My day job, if you didn’t already know, is in healthcare and during my work I am frequently struck by how fortunate we are to live in this day and age. The human race has never had better medication, and advances in surgical procedures are being made almost daily. The diagnostic tools we have at our disposal are amazing, and the minds which come up with these technologies, are to me at least, beyond comprehension. As a result of all of this, people are able to live longer and better lives.*
Whilst many would say that this is enough of a reason to grateful to be alive now, you should actually be even more thankful than you realise. You may have missed it, but we are actually currently sharing the planet with one of the most exceptional beings (human or otherwise) ever to draw breath. This person should be an inspiration to you. The people who know me, know how much I love music, and so I am delighted to be living at the same time as this man. He has been described as “the Greatest Living Rock Star in the World today”.
It probably doesn’t help that this was Kanye West describing himself, and this is not an unusual claim for him to be making. I would venture to guess that if he were to have a family motto it would be words to the effect of “If it’s true, it’s not boasting… and don’t let the truth get in the way of a good story.” This is a guy who isn’t really backward in coming forward. Still, each to their own.
There is little else I find more satisfying than watching a celebrity bask in their own awesomeness. I appreciate that these people haven’t risen to the top by pure luck, they must have some redeeming qualities, but very occasionally they get rather taken with themselves. I begin to get excited when they start telling everyone how incredible they are, and what a contribution they have made. I’m never sure if this contribution is to mankind as a whole, their art, career, or bank balance, but the cynic in me thinks that they can rather overemphasize the importance of their craft.
Unlike Mr West, I’ve always thought that pride is not an especially good thing. It’s one of the seven deadly sins, and if old adages are to be believed, it comes before a fall. As a general rule, I’m not a huge fan of the famous, but those to whom I am only indifferent, rather than possess an all consuming loathing for, have to have achieved something. They may find themselves at the dizzy heights of me “quite liking” them if they are self effacing and humble, but to progress beyond that they would have to demonstrate a superhuman level of humility.
Again, I wouldn’t say that I am an especially proud person. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again (as I think it’s a pretty good joke) I’m probably the most humble person you’re likely to meet, but there is one area of my life I will happily brag about, ad nauseum (as anyone who has ever met me will know), and that as you will have guessed, is my children.
Over the past few weeks, I have a lot to be especially happy about. Whilst Fraboo isn’t showing any signs of setting the academic world alight, she is a truly kind and loving person, and Mrs L. and I were delighted to learn that she won the Principal’s award for friendship this term at school. I appreciate that friendship is a difficult thing to quantify, but Fraboo just seems to make friends wherever she goes. Whilst I think she is one of the more popular people in her class, she tries her very hardest to include those who are less accepted, and at this stage in her learning, for me, this is far more important than any exam results.
Boy-Boy is slightly different, and socially he is best described as indifferent. He is however, starting to demonstrate quite considerable academic potential. A few months ago he chastised me for not knowing what an enneagram is. For those of you who are dense as me it is a nine pointed star. He surprised us a few weeks ago by counting to ten in Spanish, and then informed us that Uranus has 27 moons. This is all from a child for whom school is seven months away. There will come a time in the not too distant future when I will be going to him for answers. I wonder how old he has to be to take part in a pub quiz?
Then there’s Jojo. If you’ve read any of my recent posts, you will also know that he is fiercely independent. Whilst this is not always easy for us as parents to deal with, I am proud that at less than two years old he has accomplished something I had yet to achieve at 23. Knowing his own mind. He is also learning incredibly fast and his vocabulary is increasing daily. In fact, just today he uttered his first sentence. He’d just had his first swimming lesson, throughout which he was inconsolable. We’d got out of the pool gone through to the changing room, and I just taken his togs off. He then loudly announced. “Daddy, I did a wee!” He wasn’t lying, he had urinated, with great abundance and enthusiasm. All over my dry jeans!
A word from the wise then Kanye. Pride really does come before a fall.
*I understand that none of this is without cost, and in many parts of the world this level of care is simply unimaginable, but never-the-less, it is available. I am merely making an observation about how far we’ve come as a people.