Three Things on Thursday

Three Things on Thursday May 30, 2019

The First Thing 

Today is Ascension Day, if you were anxiously waiting. I wrote this about it a couple of years ago. I was thinking about Star Wars, about which I know almost nothing, and so was probably needlessly insulting. And there’s a typo which I don’t really feel like trying to fix. And also I think I must have been feeling bitter. Other than that it’s great! Or something.

The Second Thing

I just need to mention that my favorite thing on Facebook—have I already said this?—is a page called Victorians, Ville Victorians. Almost every day, whoever it is who is doing this important work, takes a painting and writes a hilarious but historically insightful backstory, so that you learn something strange about the Victorians. My favorite was of the twins in pink being fed sweets and then being sick all over their mother. I have devoted myself to trying to keep up, which is taking up a lot of time which I feel could not be spent any better, at least if I am going to be on the internet, which I shouldn’t be, so whatever.

The Third Thing

I was on the Ride Home with John and Kathy last night (looks like there’s no link yet), in my usual last Wednesday of the month way, and they asked me about good things I’ve done as a parent. I said the best thing I did, not knowing it was important at the time, was to make my children go to bed and go to sleep. And the second thing was to invest in their humor. Children are by nature humorless, I said, and need help to become more funny. I myself went to later bed (so important to do this if you want to survive parenthood) wondering if this was actually true because children can, of course, on their own, be very funny. I watched a little girl dancing around two days ago, hamming it up to the enjoyment of all. But I think I am right, because thirty seconds later, in the grip of a deep moral seriousness that came over her like a malign shadow, she lost all her capacity to distance herself emotionally and see the humor of the thing, which is that it is very hard to put your foot into the wrong shoe the wrong way round. This, I feel, is a central feature of public discourse, and can only be cured by everyone stopping to see how ridiculous it all is. Unfortunately, when you try to point out to someone how funny they are being, when they are not intending to be so, but are, in fact gripped by the desperate apocalyptic seriousness of the thing, it doesn’t go well. In other words, I’m right. It’s not enough to just occasionally be funny. It is a lifelong habit of stepping back and deliberately laughing that children need to be taught, otherwise they, like everybody, will grow up to be insufferable.

Sorry about these short little posts. I’m beat. I’m probably not going to make it through 7 quick takes tomorrow but will certainly be back on Sunday as usual, reminding you to go to church. Have a great weekend!

Browse Our Archives

Follow Us!

What Are Your Thoughts?leave a comment