Thursday, January 10, 2008

Three for Thursday: Poor Little Rich Kids, Freezing at PeeWee Hockey and Angry Women

Item #1: Poor Little Rich Kids

New York Magazine’s issue this week poses an interesting question: How do you raise your child to be a productive member of society when you’re filthy rich? The article focuses on wealthy parents who are struggling with how to help their children grow up to become normal, well-adjusted adults:

“. . . [T]he newly rich inevitably discover that it’s very hard to have your cake and eat it while raising healthy, hardworking children. ‘I just met this morning with a very sharp 48-year-old,’ says Charles Collier, author of Wealth in Families and senior philanthropic adviser at Harvard University. ‘And he said to me, ‘I don’t want my children to be entitled, but I want to have a jet. I came from nothing. Haven’t I earned my jet?’”

If only I had their problems . . .

Item #2: Freezing at PeeWee Hockey

As if Dunkin’ Donuts needed to give me another justification for my frequent visits to their establishments for my favorite, non-controlled substance . . . now the coffee purveyors have released a new TV ad that warms the cockles of my heart.

It shows parents and siblings of grade school-aged kids, shivering in the stands at a hockey rink while watching small people attempt to play hockey. Over the images you hear the catchy little jingle: “I can’t feel my hands. I’m freezing at PeeWee hockey. Freezing at PeeWee hockey.” Then, as the camera shows us an image of a dad toting a four-pack of steaming hot beverages, the song strikes a hopeful note, “But wait, there’s help on the way.”

Given that, in a couple of weeks, my youngest child will resume his learn-to-skate/hockey lessons very early on Saturday mornings, I too will be freezing at PeeWee hockey and will only find comfort with my scalding cuppa java and ugly, yet warm boots.

Item #3: Angry Women

Is that what made up the difference between Illinois Senator Barack Obama’s double-digit, pre-New Hampshire primary lead in the polls and New York Senator Hillary Clinton’s eventual come-from-behind win? Angry women? Were women upset that the other candidates appeared to be picking on her in the debates? Were they bothered that Clinton was told in front of a national audience that she was unlikeable? Were they moved by Clinton’s display of emotion in a New Hampshire diner on Monday?

While the much-shamed political punditry class tries in vain to figure out how they could’ve been so wrong as to almost unanimously predict a massive Obama win in the Granite State, others are offering their own pet theories, including New York Times columnist Gail Collins who suggested this:

“My own favorite theory is that this week, Hillary was a stand-in for every woman who’s overdosed on multitasking. They grabbed at the opportunity to have kids/go back to school/start a business/become a lawyer. But there are days when they can’t meet everybody’s needs and the men in their lives — loved ones and otherwise — make them feel like failures or towers of self-involvement. And the deal is that they can either suck it up or look like a baby.”

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