Saturday, February 21, 2009

Shiny shoes, messy beds

The goings-on at Kimmel have turned me into even more of a staid reactionary, aesthetically at least, than I already was. This has had an immeasurable impact - temporary, I hope - on my taste in shoes. For reasons beyond my control, I now find these the height of perfection, although my aversion to buying shoes online (and, post-paying for driving lessons, buying shoes, period, even if they are shoes stylistically associated with driving) means there's a good chance I will not go down this road. I can imagine thinking they were a huge mistake, should I go through with it, but, shiny! And with weird soles that are bumps instead of soles! Still, any purchase that would contribute to GOOP, however indirectly, is probably an immoral one.

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In other news, and with the knowledge that mentioning the Obama girls and fashion in one post might bring on the torch-bearing commenters, what do we think of the Obamas' attempts to keep the girls grounded? I want to say, sensible and admirable, and further proof that the First Family is without flaw. (OK, one flaw: 8pm is way to early to make a 10-year-old go to bed.)

While telling the housekeepers not to make the girls' beds in the morning seems reasonable, bed-making is something I've never understood altogether--why must a bed be made, except on the occasion of sheet-change/laundry day? Can't a person (child or adult) OK with a messy bed have it messy in the morning and return to it messy each night? I get how having a maid clean a room could spoil a kid, but I tend to think parents who make their children make their beds (as opposed to saying, your bed will be as you leave it) do so to make a point, a point that could just as easily be made by having children help out with chores that actually must get done, such as dishes, laundry, vacuuming, cooking, etc.

For the Obamas, whose goal is providing normalcy, I can understand why such a rule might make up, character-building-wise, for chores the kids simply wouldn't get a chance to do, it being the White House and all. But what of the rest of American families, where normalcy is the default? (I do not speak of families raising American Jewish daughters, where the underlying fear that the girl will grow up into a 'JAP' is so pervasive that an Obamas-like fear of raising brats who covet - and receive - shiny pink shoes can often be found, particularly if one parent or both are Israeli but living in the States.)

As a non-parent, I can only speculate, but maybe enforced bed-making is a way of telling your children that they don't make the rules, that this isn't their property, and that they must not only pull their weight around the house and lack grown-up privileges - both reasonable requests - but also submit to constant reminders of their inferior status. And I'm not sure I see the point of taking things that far.

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

"...but also submit to constant reminders of their inferior status."
Quite an interesting theory--probably standing up to military analogies--but, as with buying used clothing, people (parents) have have different ideas of what constitutes freedom and what is simply a matter of hygiene. I wouldn't categorize daily bed-making with, say, tooth brushing, but some people might, and would feel they were doing a bad job as parents not to instill the habit in their children.

Petey said...

"The goings-on at Kimmel have turned me into even more of a staid reactionary, aesthetically at least, than I already was."

If you would just learn how to hunt moose, we could elect you the Governor of Long Island...

(If there are no moose available, you could hunt dachshunds or drum circle members.)