day off. young and recklessish

 I am not one to quote movies, ever. With my memory, it is a wonder that I even remember having watched one, much less recite lines more than a decade following. However, for some strange reason, there is one movie quote I will always remember. Despite the fact that it struck me so strongly at the time, I cannot explain what it is that has kept me remembering it, and whispering it to myself from time to time.

Royal: Chas has those boys cooped up like a pair of jackrabbits, Ethel.
Ethel:He has his reasons.
Royal: Oh, I know that, but you can't raise boys to be scared of life. You gotta brew some recklessness into them.
 Ethel:I think that's terrible advice.
 Royal: No, you don't.

 Yes, of all the things I forget (and there are millions of them), I somehow remember a quote from the Royal Tenenbaums. Weird. I suppose that it isn't much a stretch to relate so strongly to a Wes Anderson movie though. The total showboating of non traditional family values, is undoubtedly the great appeal for our entire, square peg generation. Cheesy? Perhaps. However, that doesn't change the fact that these highly sensationalized casts of characters, are in fact "totally us".

I apologize if I have already paraded around this whole sentiment of "reckless youth" before. But, it just keeps popping up. So, you're just going to have to deal with it. Or maybe, if I deal with it, it will pop up less.

Whatever, let's just work it out together, shall we.

Ever since this school year started, I have been going back to a conversation I had with a good friend about what total shitheads we were when we were younger. We laughed about all of the terrible things we did, and dangerous paths we chose. It was actually a pretty hilarious conversation until the wave of consciousness washed over us......"Fuuuuuuuuck! How do we keep our kids from doing shit like that?"

It is kind of a somber moment, the first time you think of your kids as being capable of making a decision that could potentially harm them, or totally change the course of their whole lives. People talk about those things you just can't understand until you become a parent, and to be honest most of them are bullshit. This however, is definitely one of those things. In my head I could already hear that generic speech given by every dad since the dawn of time, "I want you to make better decisions than I did........". As you can probably imagine, my immediate reaction to seeing myself  perform this stale, prepackaged, and totally fictitious dad monologue was one of complete disgust. Again, not a fan of bullshit.

This is not to say that I want my boys to partake in all of the questionable forms of recreation their old man did. Certainly, I do care for them. I value their health, and well being above anything else. But at the same time, the more I  reflect on it, the less I can deny the importance of making a few bad decisions.

Without _____, I never would have found ______. Man, I remember the first time I _______, that was the same night I met my best friend ______.

Some of my most cherished friends, as well as the very things that shaped me as a person (music, art, etc.), all started with situations my parents would have flipped their shit over. Had they know about them, of course. I never would have found any of it, if I had been where I was supposed to be. So, it stands to reason that..............Aw hell, I don't know what stands to reason.

I suppose what I am getting at is, as a parent it's really important to recognize what it is that made you who you are. Where it is that you came from, and what the real influences in your life were. Were they all on the straight and narrow? I sincerely doubt it. It makes me sad to know that there are so many people out there with some really great stories they will never tell. For fear of awakening, or encouraging a behavior. Blah.

But I suppose, ultimately as a parent it is my responsibility to keep my children safe and on the right path. And this I vow to do. I will still make rules, and I will will have high expectations. But, I will also leave the light on, and try not to ask too many questions...