December 16, 2004
Blogger dads

I've only just spotted this, from Alan Little's blog, about son Jack:

Sunday Family Life Vignette: Maria and I are having dinner in the kitchen. Jack has finished his dinner and is watching Jungle Book in the living room. Or so we think. Jack comes running into the kitchen, grabs a wooden spoon from the sink and runs back out. I decide I should go and see what he's doing with it. What he's doing with it is trying to spoon spilt soil back into one of his mum's plant pots. For which he clearly deserves a big hug.

I figure this is well above a chimpanzee level of reasoning, both in terms of understanding cause and effect (soil spilt -> mum not pleased) and premeditated tool use.

So there it is, in case you didn't spot it.

Not having any kids of my own I have no real idea, but this seems like fine parenting to me. Jack clearly knew he had done something bad, so no lecture to that effect was needed. On the contrary, well done for realising it, and well done for doing something intelligent about it.

I know what you're thinking. What the hell business is this of mine and who the hell am I to be judging Alan's skills as a parent? Answer: if you blog things like that, the whole world is then entitled to discuss it.

See also Gnat, daughter of another doting (and blogging – Lileks is a blogger in all but software) father. Here's the most recent Gnat reference that I could find:

A lazy day at home – well, for the kid, anyway. After all the hurly-burly and excitement of the big trip to Chicago, a day spent with Play-Doh and Spongebob is just the ticket. I love to hear her laugh – not just the babbling laugh of a kid delighting in something infantile, but that short single-syllable Ha! that sounds very adult, and suggests she gets the joke on a higher level.

What happens when Gnat and Bob get old enough to be reading such stuff? That's not a sarky complaint disguised as a question, I'm really looking forward to that, especially if they – I don't know – want to join in the conversation, perhaps with blogs of their own. (Question: who is the world's youngest Real Blogger?)

Or maybe there will be Conversations, after which Feelings will be Respected, and then a great Jack silence, and a great Gnat silence. Hope not.

My guess is that having a blogger dad who blogs about you will be like growing up in the Royal Family. It will be years before you realise there's anything unusual going on, and many more before you get how very unusual it actually was. In this case it'll be: Wow, you mean your dad doesn't blog about you? How very peculiar.

Posted by Brian Micklethwait at 10:01 PM
Category: BloggingParents and children