“Everybody has to learn sometime”

A while back I was trying to help Alaric make a ginger bread house.  He mixed up the icing and put it in the bag with the plastic nozzle, and cut off the tip.  I was then trying to use the icing as cement for the walls with little success.  Eventually I broke a wall, at which point I explained to Alaric that I did not have the skills to build his ginger bread house and he would have to wait for his talented mother to have time to do it.  We cemented the broken piece together and double bagged the icing with a wet papertowel and put it all away.

see how the walls are angled?  very tricky construction problem

a ginger bread house

Several days later my lovely wife was building the gingerbread house and taking pot shots at me when Alaric said “that’s OK.  Everybody has to learn sometime.”  I don’t think these are my words, so it’s probably someone from school, but I agree wholeheartedly.  He’s learned a valuable lesson about the incremental view of intelligence.  Lacking knowledge or ability doesn’t mean there’s something wrong with you, just get on with the business of learning it.  After the house was built, he requested my help decorating it because he was worried that my witty wife’s japes might have hurt my feelings.

I Love that boy.

Yesterday we’re riding in the car, and I’m complaining about one of my co-workers… (must tread carefully here as my real life identity is not secret at all).  After a short and viscous rant which gave no identifiable details as to who the person was…

  • My son asked “why you mad?”
  • And I calmly said “because he doesn’t deserve to work where I work and make the kind of money we make.”
  • “Papa, everybody has to learn sometime.”
  • “True, but he’s had plenty of time to learn.  He either can’t do it, or he’s too lazy to do it.”
  • “Oh”
  • “If he worked hard and tried to learn everyday I might get frustrated with him, but I wouldn’t get mad.”

Am I wrong?

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4 thoughts on ““Everybody has to learn sometime”

  1. Anger versus frustration. Rather than saying whether you are justified or not, allow me to expound upon another aspect of the situation…one which we as Americans tend to take for granted – mental health.

    Anger is a very strong emotion which needs a release. If it is continues to fester and is bottled up inside it turns to rage. Anger is very unhealthy.

    Frustration is a much more complex emotion, but requires a lesser outlet for complete release. With frustration you are simply venting your disappointment that your coworkers competency has not increased as quickly as you would like it too, but you are still giving them the benefit of the doubt that they can attain a fell level of competency in time. With anger, you are assuming they cannot and will not ever attain this level.

    If you are truly angry, you need to complain to management so they can take action, for your own peace of mind. Let them take the necessary action needed to bring your co-worker into compliance. This is a higher level management problem, not yours.

    If you search yourself and think you are being rash, then try again.

    I very seldom get angry…just because I find it just isn’t worth it to me. It is much easier for me to forgive and forget. I just can’t handle that kind of negativity in my life.

    • I don’t feel anger as a burden that is bottled up. I feel it as a flare-up which is pretty much instantly over.
      Anger is to Hate as Lust it to Love?

      I don’t often get angry either, but I don’t really think about it in terms of “worth it to me”. Rather it’s mostly a matter of disposition, and some knowledge that it makes it harder to see the other person’s point of view or convince them that yours is the better way.

  2. Not wrong at all. He clearly has a handle on allowing people due process in understanding a new concept, you were simply rounding out his understanding with an example that isn’t so black-and-white. He’s obviously a sharp kid, he’ll understand.

    • The line that felt wrong after I said it was “He doesn’t deserve to make the kind of money we make.” I’m kind of wired with a since of fairness which leans more towards socialist concepts than capitalist ones… Who am I to say what this other guy deserves?

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