6.03.2006

Working Through the Competitive Urge

Why do people constantly feel the need to pile shit on other people's heads in order for theirs not to seem so smelly? Why do I? I am sick of other people and myself. I am done with passive aggressive competitiveness. Directness and helpfulness only from this point on.

Example: Yesterday Iz's classmate's parent started telling me about her son's science interests and the camp he's doing this summer and wouldn't Iz like to go to a camp like that? I gave her the benefit of the doubt as I don't know her very well, and she might have been being truly friendly and helpful rather than fishing for points of parenting/child superiority like so many other local parents.

I told her that she was right, that Iz probably would enjoy the camp she mentioned. I did not tell her that Iz already took the camp last summer and that I thought it was kit-based crap. What would be the point? I did not mention that Iz has already signed up for an exploration-based science camp. I did not give in to my urge to brandish Iz's recent science exploits in electroplating with Ep and Merlin at their house, and then in breaking open geodes and researching fossils at our house.

Instead I told the parent about The Tek Museum in San Jose, how a friend of ours works there, and the reasons why her son would probably enjoy it. She seemed excited, and thanked me for the recommendation.

That will be my new M.O. Answer questions directly without pulling up points of comparison or rationalization, listen to what people are saying about their own children rather than thinking about how mine measures up, and try to end with a nice or helpful rather than barbed comment.

Just in case you suspect that that is how I would always hold a conversation with an acquaintance based on how I present myself on this site, rest assured that I am actually quite a bitch deep down, but that I am working on it.

Our cherry tree is covered with yummy fruit and I remembered to net the tree this year, so the birds and squirrels won't be the only ones to partake of its bounty! If I can make real progress towards being a kinder person then perhaps I will better enjoy my bowl of cherries.

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