Asa’s on the couch watching Sesame Street right now. He’s got a bit of a cough, so I’m sure he needs the rest. Right? Surely he needs to watch Dennis Quaid doing the twist with a flock of sheep. Amy Chua, author of the new book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother would not approve of my TV-sitter this morning. Here’s a list of things her two daughters weren’t allowed to do growing up:
– attend a sleepover
– have a playdate
– be in a school play
– complain about not being in a school play
– watch TV or play computer games
– choose their own extracurricular activities
– get any grade less than an A
– not be the #1 student in every subject except gym and drama
– play any instrument other than the piano or violin
– not play the piano or violin.
The daughters are highly accomplished, of course. And Ms. Chua is a professor at Yale. Sorry, Asa; I’m already setting you up for failure, boy. But the dancing sheep are hysterical, aren’t they?
I do want to read the book eventually because of this excerpt:
“Chinese parents can do things that would seem unimaginable — even legally actionable — to Westerners. Chinese mothers can say to their daughters, “Hey fatty — lose some weight.” By contrast, Western parents have to tiptoe around the issue, talking in terms of “health” and never ever mentioning the f-word, and their kids still end up in therapy for eating disorders and negative self-image. … Western parents are concerned about their children’s psyches. Chinese parents aren’t. They assume strength, not fragility, and as a result they behave very differently.”
It’s an interesting notion: assuming strength, not fragility. No worries though, I promise not to be convinced to threaten to burn Asa’s stuffed animals if he doesn’t practice the piano four hours a day.
It’s Freetails tonight at 6:30. Join us if you’re in San Antonio. (We’re very easy to pick out.) Many stories will be told. You do not have to be a runner to come; You just need a sense of humor and a high tolerance for listening to running talk.