Inspection…

Yeah I think I’ve found your problem right here… It’s a basshole.

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Two year olds are awesome. I’d love to be that inquisitive again.

If the feeling takes you that you should like to inspect the basset hounds… eh… rusty sheriffs badge, you should likely do so.

My first reaction, sitting nearby on the lip of the sandpit, was ‘no, that’s gross’. But I caught myself just in time. I don’t really want to stifle that natural curiosity and interest. Besides it’s not really gross, she’s just having a gander… and he keeps his chocolate starfish pretty damn sparkly*

*annoyingly, that… eh… maintenance, is done with loud slurping noises every night just before bed time. Nothing like that melodic sound to lull you to sleep.

Josh Waitzkin (chess guy – ju-jitsu guy I like) has a great parenting theory. He’s particularly careful about his use of adjectives when he’s talking to his progeny.

He uses the example of the weather. If his kid wants to play outside and it’s stormy out, he doesn’t say the weather is ‘bad’. It’s just weather. In any event I’m trying to live that philosophy. It’s not a disgusting spider that you need to be scared of… It’s just a spider. Let’s have a look at it. And then put it outside. (Admittedly this was a little more challenging with a black widow the other day)

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This sort of language is harder than it sounds. We are very conditioned in our responses, describing things on autopilot, ascribing adverbs and adjectives with almost no consideration. I only realised how broadly negative my language was until I paused to take cognisance of what I was saying.

I still mess it up quite regularly. But I am trying to get better at this.

Frozen

As the father of a two year old daughter I’ve now watched Frozen enough times* to know most of the words to the songs… and make some observations…

*so, so, so, so, so, many times…

Elsa’s and Anna’s parents were kinda rubbish. Their daughter has magical powers… and their solution is to socially isolate her and her sibling? And then they go and die… without planning for that eventuality.

Their lasting legacy is the crappy advice they give to their daughter ‘conceal don’t feel’. Clearly this were things start to go wrong for Elsa….

Their crap parenting also lies at the core of poor Anna wanting to marry the first guy she meets. If you’ve been locked in a castle your whole childhood for no reason anyone can explain to you… you’re bound to end up a bit kooky.

Elsa’s reaction to this event is super authoritarian, ‘I said no, because I said so’. Which leads me to believe she would not have been a good monarch. Not really into Socratic debate and reasoned discussion.

I really like a good redemption tale. But does Elsa ever really have a ‘moment’ where she realizes this is all her fault. Not really.

Anna is WAY less morally ambiguous. And a much more interesting character. She remains cheerful and optimistic despite her abusive upbringing. And then despite Elsa trying to kill her on more than one occasion.

Sure the first time was by accident… but then when she freezes Anna’s heart? And then creates an ice golem who ‘loses his shit’ when Anna throws a snowball at him? That golem had no reasonable expectation that kicking Olaf off a 200ft cliff wouldn’t end him. Plus Christof and Anna were already leaving… what would have happened if Anna hadn’t cut the rope? Clearly she considered falling off a cliff preferable to dealing with the homicidal creature of Elsa’s creation.

Also I don’t understand the prince Hans story arc. He was a sociopath the whole time? Is this story full of crazies? This seems reasonable. After all… If you read any Scandinavian crime Noir you soon realize that the Danes, Swedes and Norwegians are all actually crazy. (And alcoholic)

Mostly I don’t understand why Elsa is peddled as the heroine (she’s in the foreground of every poster) and the goto figurehead for empowerment… when clearly its Anna.

This post was typed on my iPhone while watching Frozen. Sven and Christof are busy rushing back to Arendale to save Anna. This is my Saturday morning now… yay me.