Note: This post is long and rambling. I have nothing really to say. So I will bore you with a story about my children to provide fodder for my blog. Read on at your discretion.
I just gave my 11 year old daughter, Asha Ming, The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene.
Well here goes.
Last night my wife told me she had received a call from the Northeast guidance counselor earlier that day.
Even though three of our children attend Northeast, I knew immediately who it was.
What did she do now?
Apparently she had called a boy an ‘idiot’ and…
He ratted to the teacher’s aide…
Who notified the teacher…
Who brought in the guidance counselor…
Who called Chanel…
Who is now telling me.
When questioned further, Asha Ming claimed it was in retaliation for said boy attempting to trip her.
You trip me, I call you idiot.
Sounds about right.
All rather tame stuff.
Kids will be kids after all.
But then, the wife told me about how Asha Ming flipped the script.
The counselor (in an attempt to determine Asha’s motivations), asked how things were at home.
Realizing that she might really be in trouble, she saw her opportunity to turn things in her favor.
Imagine my surprise to hear that Asha Ming broke down crying.
Revealing (to the counselor) how sad she was because mommy and daddy work too much.
And how we’re never home.
That daddy doesn’t come home until 10 o’clock at night.
Now the counselor is all in.
The concern for Asha’s mean-spirited behavior, turned to concern for Asha Ming’s mental health (and the conditions in the Chukumba household).
She was a guidance counselor, after all.
But I knew, immediately, as wifey recounted the story, that old girl was being played.
Those were elephant tears.
The whole event was orchestrated.
For maximum effect.
Yes. My wife and I both work.
But Chanel sees the kids off in the morning (we both do actually).
And is home to pick them up off the bus after school.
I get home, routinely, at 6:15.
On occasion, a business obligation will keep me out late.
But I regularly tuck the kids in at night.
We take family trips, eat out, go to the movies, eat dinner together at the dining room table, etc.
We both agree that Asha Ming will receive a talking to.
Last night, we pulled Asha Ming aside and asked her about her day.
Whenever there’s a tag team, these kids know the jig is up.
And last night was no exception.
Me: Why are we here?
Child: Because I got in trouble at school.
Me: What did you do?
Child: I called Taj a name.
Me: What have we told you about being mean or insulting other people.
Child: Not to do it.
Me: So why did you?
Child: Because he tripped me.
The wife wasn’t down with this linear line of questioning.
It all sounded a tad…rehearsed.
So she changed it up.
Wifey: Tell me about Taj.
Wifey: Does he bother you often?
Child: Uh huh.
Wifey: What does he do?
Child: He’s always trying to trip me.
Is this a crush?
Wifey: Well what was he doing that you called him an idiot?
Child: He was catching snowflakes.
Child: And I didn’t call him an idiot. I said he was idiotic.
I had heard enough.
Apparently, Taj had been Asha Ming’s target for some time.
She had been waging a steady psychological campaign.
And yesterday was the straw that broke the camel’s back.
She broke poor Taj down to the point that he was crying – CRYING!
Trying to catch snowflakes with his mouth was all that it took to draw Asha Ming’s ire and condemnation.
I imagined this innocent child frolicking in the newly fallen snow, mouth agape, skyward, waiting for the gentle flakes to land upon his tongue…
And Asha Ming cooly (cruelly?) sizing him up, waiting for the precise moment to let her caustic barb fly.
In a moment of profound realization, I knew that Asha Ming was not to be trifled with.
So why did I give an 11 year old the 48 Law of Power?
Because she manipulates people with such deft and skill…
That I must cultivate this talent.
And hone her skills of manipulation.
I know some may read this and recoil.
My daughter is a trip.
Her behavior (at times) is buck wild dingo-ish.
But know this.
Asha Ming will rule the world.
And you’ll all have me to thank.
And Robert Greene.