1 Thing That Makes for a Good Father

 

SLOW TO ANGER

This remedy could be misinterpreted.

Someone reading “slow to anger” may think that fatherhood is being kind and nice.

Being a good father has little to do with being nice. Being a good father demands you be precise.

Make clear to your children how life works

Give them their options, and then hold them to their decisions without adding the angry heat of you feeling betrayed.

To achieve this, a father must keep in mind three important procedures:

1. Don’t show up to discipline your children already pissed about something else.

2. Let them explain and trap them in their own inconsistencies.

3. Let the punishment fit the crime.

Taking away a phone is not the correct judgment for being a bully. Any child who’s a bully needs to understand what it feels like to be bullied.

Being grounded is not sufficient for refusing to do the chores. Having the garbage set on top of their bed if they don’t take it out is more apt.

If you have creative solutions to dealing with your children instead of feeling disappointed and therefore angry, your results will be much more enlightening and lasting.


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Sit Down Comedy …March 22nd, 2019

Jonathots Daily Blog

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I bought a loaf of bread. I didn’t eat it all.

So on the eighth or ninth day, I visited the cupboard to see if I could get another slice of life and discovered that the bread had been overtaken by mold.

I paused.

I considered removing the wrapper, cutting the mold off and eating the rest, but the mold also came with a smell—actually, similar to beer. So reluctantly—maybe even a little aggravated—I took my last five or six slices, now moldy, and tossed them into the garbage.

I was a little surprised how fussy I was about it. I don’t know if I just had my heart set on a sandwich or if I felt cheated because my bread gave up.

But I knew this: mold does not get better. I couldn’t do some “treatment” to my bread and return the next day and find it unmoldy. Once mold arrives it takes over. Quite aggressive. And it isn’t pretty—grayish-green with little hairy arms.

It’s a nasty substance and it turns bread into shit. (You can hear by my words that I was really put off.)

Welcome to America.

I’ve heard us called “the breadbasket of the world.” I was told as a youngster that our farmlands could feed the nations. Not much talk about that of late—nowadays farmers are trying to survive and make their beans and corn cover their budgets. No one trying to feed the four corners.

But we once were the breadbasket. Then one day, we reached into our souls, our mind, our heart and into our principles and pulled out moldy bread. Really bad mold.

And as I told you earlier, mold doesn’t get better. You can’t reform mold. You can’t try to find a way to accept it and develop a taste for it. You have to throw the whole damn thing out.

That’s unfortunate. It’s unfortunate but it’s necessary.

Truth is, one apple does not spoil the whole bushel—but one little piece of mold does spoil the whole loaf, because the climate necessary to breed that mold permeates all the way to the crust.

Likewise, the insolence, selfishness and meanness that have brought about the present American way of dealing with each other has spoiled many of the treasures we used to hold dear.

Some things have just got to be thrown out. There isn’t a choice. It’s because the mold has taken over the “bread of life” in America and the mold is a simple poison. Here it is:

  • “My ideas are more important than you.”
  • “My faith is more valuable than your freedom.”
  • “My politics are divinely inspired, while yours are evil.”
  • “My lifestyle is superior.”
  • “Even my dog is more human than any of you.”

And,

  • “I and those who came out of my orgasm of procreation are much higher in quality, and it’s difficult to tolerate you anymore.”

There’s the mold. It’s gotta go.

You can try to save some of the stuff, but the arguing that we call politics has to be thrown in the trash, even if we lose some “debate.”

The beliefs we call religion have to be dumped even if we ignore a verse or two of holy writ.

And the definition of family needs to expand to include everybody twenty-five thousand miles in any direction throughout the entire Earth.

If we don’t do this, we’re going to start believing that the worst parts of the bread can be cut off, and the rest will be just fine, even though it tastes a little pukey.

We are permeated with the mold of those who are too old, too bold and too cold. Some things must be thrown away.

I, for one, am going to go into my cabinet, where I keep my soul, and start clearing out the nastiness. Anything that makes me believe that I’m better than you, or that my ideas are more God-like, or that my politics have the touch of grace while yours are imbedded with the sinister, will be dumped into the trash.

Buy fresh bread. Don’t get more than you need.

Matter of fact, start thinking of it this way:

“Give us this day our daily bread.”

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G-Poppers … October 16th, 2015

 Jonathots Daily Blog

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Jon close up

Grandson and Granddaughter came running into the room under a great cloud of bickering.

Grandson had obviously had a tiff with a friend because he was proclaiming, “People are bad,” while Granddaughter was defending the race, saying that “people are good.”

G-Pop sat quietly listening, allowing the smoke to clear from their battle.

At length, Granddaughter asked, “What do you think, G-Pop? Are people bad? Or good?”

G-Pop smiled and said, “People are like really smart, well-trained dogs. They have learned that if they don’t pee on the carpet, they get more treats. If they stay out of the closet and refrain from chewing shoes, they receive more freedom on the leash. And if they learn when to bark, and certainly never bite, they are considered a treasure.”

“But when they’re not smart, and they’re poorly trained, they tend to run in packs, attacking anyone who’s weak. But let me tell you–it does not matter if the dog is smart or well-trained. You still must keep it away from cats and garbage cans–because every dog, when it gets around its enemy–the cat–turns into a scrapper. And every canine becomes nothing less than an animal when it hangs around the garbage.”

When G-Pop finished his little comparative narrative, he realized he was dealing with a split audience.

His grandson seemed delighted, having his faith restored that new tricks were possible from a “dogged” populace. But G-Pop’s granddaughter–well, she seemed disgusted, displaying a “screw the pooch” face.

“People aren’t dogs,” she snarled as she scampered out of the room.

G-Pop giggled. Turning to his grandson, he concluded, “She’s right, you know. People aren’t really dogs. Yet getting smarter and better trained may still be our best path to guarding our houses, while still remaining man’s best friend.”

 

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The Power of Nothing… October 14, 2012

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Live from October 1st filming

Little Brian had not yet learned the power of becoming invisible. He was only seven years old, and that particular piece of youthful wisdom normally arrives around ten or eleven. So he made the mistake one hot summer day of coming into the house, shuffling his feet in the carpet, collapsing on the couch, sprouting a frown, and communicating to his mother that he was bored and devoid of any ideas of how to entertain himself.

This was a big mistake. The young lad was about to lose all of his freedom. Because Mom, wanting to be a good exhorter for her young offspring, began to come up with suggestions about what bored Brian could do to stimulate his mind and body–and at the same time, perform some useful chores around the house. Before he knew it, he had gone from being a liberty-loving youngster to being a room cleaner, a garbage carrier, a dog walker and even, for some ridiculous reason, raking up the dried-up grass his father had mowed the night before. Now he was exhausted and bored. He had failed to understand the power of nothing.

There are days when progress is not made nor is there any particular inclination that devastation and defeat is waiting in the wings to leap on our carcass. People who become dismayed, discouraged, frustrated or pass on the impression that they are without needful activity always get roped into the dumbest jobs possible.

For instance, how would I describe this Saturday in the discovery of my miracle and the restitution of my legs, so I can walk about instead of utilizing the power of the wheel?

Nothing much happened.

I feel a little better; I can straighten up without having a catch in the back of my legs and hips. I told a friend of mine that from the waist up, I’m twenty-five years old and from the belly-button down, I’m about ninety-one. I guess if you average those two numbers, you get my actual age.

So what have I got to complain about? I was trying to remember that old saying. Is it “a watched pot never boils?” Something like that. Sometimes things slow down and they do so in order for us to celebrate, evaluate and appreciate.

If life whirled by at the speed of light, we would not only fail to see it, but we would never get a chance to giggle at the silly moments and revel in the victories.

Celebrate. Just take a few moments of nothingness to celebrate all the goodness that has come thus far. For six decades I’ve been able to live, and in most of those years, be productive, humorous, creative and loved. How remarkable.

Evaluate. Yes, evaluate why, at this point, certain blessings are eluding me, and exercise my good common sense and desire to bring these gifts to me.

Appreciate. Appreciate the fact that no one is running my life, that God has given me choice, and if I am willing to adapt and grow, very likely the best things are yet to come.

Thus the power of nothing.

So when I call someone on the phone and I say, “What’s going on?” and they say, “Nothing,” I think, “You are so lucky.”

I was lucky today. I didn’t get worse. I didn’t get much better. I got a chance to celebrate my past blessings, evaluate some things that I’ve been doing wrong and appreciate a breath of air to insert new opportunity.

Don’t be like Brian. Don’t tell God, Mother Nature or the world around you that you have run out of interest in your own life. People will think they’re helping you by making up really crappy jobs.

I never allow myself to look bored. Instead, I praise God for the power of nothing–just a few minutes every once in a while that plop in my lap–where I have nothing to prove … and everything to gain.

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