Springingtiger's Blog


Children Teach Your Parents Well…

Time and tiredness precludes edits today, all spelling mistakes may be blamed on the auto-correct.

There used to be a sign in a shop in Dumbarton Road that said, “Employ a teenager now while they still know everything!” Reading that back in my forties I chuckled because, of course, it rang a bell. Hadn’t we all thought we knew it all in our teens and hadn’t a couple of decades down how wrong we were.

That was then. Now another couple of decades down the road I am less smug than I was at forty and a lot less smug than in my teens because I’m learning from young people. As regular readers will be aware I am going to see Steampowered Giraffe at Asylum in August, I wouldn’t have known who they were had out not been for a kid who won the Glasgow Ubiquitous E Steampunk Society competition at Rai Con. Thanks to the same person today I discovered live streaming on Facebook and I am quite excited by it’s possibilities.

The world has moved rapidly since I was young and like most people my age I was formed in a very different world from the one in which I now live. I have brought a lot of value with me. However I would be stupid to think I knew more than the kids off today brought up in the information age. I don’t know more, nor less, I know different. My generation can inform this world’s history, philosophy and values, but only by sharing what we have with the kids do that they can apply their knowledge to it and make of it something they can use. I don’t know how my knowledge and experience can help my granddaughters’ generation and I don’t have the right to tell them how to use it. I can only hand it over and let them use it as they will and trust them to do the best they can with what they have available. In exchange I’m learning lots of cool stuff from them.

The music was generally better in my youth though, apart from previously mentioned exceptions, which brings me to this post’s title which comes from a line out of a Crosby, Stills and Nash song. It’s not just the cool stuff we need to learn and share, we also have to understand the bad stuff, the fears and anxieties we all have and stand together to help each other through it.

My wife says, “it is the job of grandparents to create happy memories for their grandchildren.” Those memories are built on what we share both good and bad. Learning and teaching and being there for each other, young and old. Whenever I look at politics and worry about the future of the world, I look at the young people and from them I learn hope.

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