Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Dream Warrior...

So what is it that everyone gets but no one wants?  What is it that leaves you shaken with fear and wishing for a return to the bleakest of realities?  Well nightmares of course!  Dreams that increase our heart rates and leave us sucking our thumbs in the fetal position (Don't judge me).  Now while I can't remember the last time I've had one, I can certainly remember the last time my boy did. 

As it stood, the youngster awoke in a cold sweat uttering words incomprehensible.  He then stared at me as he incoherently made his way back to reality.  "I had a bad dream," he muttered.  Clearly he was shaken and I thought it time we had a little talk.  A talk about my theory on how dreams can be controlled.  How I, after days of being chased by the most heinous of villains, the Hamburglar and Grimace "Mcduo," I turned and executed a flawless roundhouse kick to the kisser of the husky one!  Since then, sleep has never been so sweet!

As for the boy, he looked at me in amazement as I told my story and his eyes widened in disbelief.  "No you didn't Daddy!" "Why sure I did, just give it a try next time."  I don't know, but he seemed pretty amped as he brushed his teeth that morning.  I must admit, I "man beat" my chest confident that I had empowered the youth to master his dreams - to lead a thumb sucking and fetal position free slumber for the rest of his days!

But wait, out of the blue, a scuffle ensues as his older sibling sleepily walks into the bathroom and blocks an awkwardly executed surprise roundhouse effort to his face!  Apparently his brother had been the midnight antagonist that provoked said cold sweat!  Unfortunately, the youngster must have misinterpreted my awesome advice and wanted to put an end to it immediately!   This was unexpected and of course prompted the need for even awesomer advice!  "Son, hear me and hear me good.  If you can dream it - you can do it! But rearranging the order of my advice could leave you unprepared and experiencing something you really don't want.  Something like a counter punch to YOUR kisser leaving YOU in the (yep - you guessed it) fetal position!"

Now friends, while this story has a lasting impression for me, hear my words and hear me good!  This is not about nightmares nor is it about the condoning or promoting of assaults against chubby folks in giant furry puppet suits!  What it is about however is challenging our kids to dream BIG (in reality) and confidently facing their own personal "McDuo's." Because while no one wants them, we all have them.  So...take this awesome advice and empower them with the ability to envision their futures and immediately take the steps necessary to turn their dreams into a dreamy reality!  I guarantee - their sleep will never be so sweet!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father.  Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com/. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

Monday, December 27, 2010

Beautiful...

It's Christmas morning and my daughter, whom I often refer to as simply "Pretty," has a hand full of iTunes gift cards. To her, each credit seems as an ounce of gold bullion burning the envelopes in which they came! So what piece of digital gold would she capture in her iPod on this day? What songs, videos, or movies would she choose? Well...being the blossoming musical connoisseur that she is, it wasn't long before I found out.

You see, Pretty came to me in excitement to show me her new purchase. It twas Keri Hilson's "Pretty Girl Rock" video. Needless to say, my lips were firmly pressed as I managed a smirk. See, while I wasn't particularly familiar with this song or most of her work, I had been shown her prior infamously disappointing piece of..."art" video! At this point my interest had no doubt been peeked! What kind of digital artistry was this and why had my Pretty deemed it worthy of her fathers' attention?

While watching the video, I could see her looking at my expressions in an attempt to gauge my thoughts and read my mind of sorts. This brought back memories of my own childhood when I'd covertly slip in my Fresh Prince "He's the DJ, I'm the Rapper" cassette tape as we made our way across town in the family minivan! In a way, I'd hope for my parents to pick up on what I thought mattered to me. Aware of this, I was careful in my facial expressions and comments.

In the video, Ms. Hilson began to express her vanity, blurring the lines between being pretty and beautiful. After the video I thought- what ways could I clarify those boundaries? What ways could I explain that they are not the same? How beauty is from within and being pretty is superficial. How it's prettiness that attracts but beauty that both attracts and burns a lasting impression. How pretty fades and beauty matures. How Ms. Hilson was no doubt pretty but whose beauty gave off a certain pungent "artsy" odor!

By the time our brief discussion ended, Pretty expressed her understanding while I explained that her beauty is not fleeting. How it is as gold bullion and not to be compared with something as common as the gift of being pretty. On this day - I changed my reference to her because she is simply "Beautiful!"

Join in with me all, let's get to know their interests and teach our "Beautiful's" this important difference as the Hilson's of the world teach otherwise. Teach them how to be beautiful and accent the pretty. Then they really will "rock!"...And besides, we can't have them going around saying that us "Parents Just Don't Understand!"

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Ode To My First Love...

She was much taller than I was and definitely different y’all. 
I mean the first time I stroked her hair - I got this feeling that I couldn't explain.
Maybe it was the sound she made. 

See the first time we met was after school –just her and I
but she always showed me love whenever I popped by. 

Man...I was addicted at like eight!
Totally satisfied that she would be my fate. 

I mean...I remember it like it was yesterday!  
She wore these beads and they were like neatly threaded through her locks and loops but most days she was plain and draped nothing at all - 
but my feelings didn't change cuz she had her eye on me still yall!

Then I found out that "erybody," even the big boys had the same feelings as me
and some days when I came to school she'd be battered a bruised,
and said nothing at all- my first experience with abuse. 
Some said the damage was done with their shoes???

Whatever the story though, she always seem to breakaway free,  
What kinda games these dudes play with her Geez? 

I had no idea cuz I wasn't a big boy and my momma told me don't do big boy things. 
Even still though...sometimes I saw her bound in chains
and my goal was simply to rip them off!
I daydreamed about her so much in class I nearly dropped the ball! 

Now time has past and we often still speak,
and her voice still sounds the same- still sweet!
I still even have dreams of her draped in those chains.
And now my son is dreaming of the same thing!

It's awkward...like...do I introduce her as an old friend cuz she jive did me wrong? 
I mean I ain't mad but she left me hurt,
On top of that…some of my homies even pimped her. 

For me- I really can't lie though, she taught me how to be a man in ways I never imagined-
things like never giving up and shooting for the stars-
do it right and you get all the money, clothes and cars.
Now my boy says that he wants to meet her cause…

he heard her voice once too and felt her chains,
and forever wanted to free her of that same perceived pain. 
***endless cycle I know*** Then I explained –
that this here son is not just a game. 

See…don't get it twisted, I don't want to present him as myself to her,
only that he takes the experiences she gave to me from her. 
Son---don't let her use you, you use her! 

Cuz she's one of those girls I call fast-
nothing but a tall orange hoop with nets and a big …glass.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Vitameatavegamin...

Hello friends. I'm your Vitameatavegamin girl. Are you tired, run-down, listless? Do you poop out at parties? Are you unpopular? The answer to all your problems is in this little bottle. Vitameatavegamin. Yes, Vitameatavegimin contains vitamins, meat, vegetables, and minerals. Yes, with Vitameatavegamin, you can spoon your way to health. All you do is take a great big tablespoon after every meal. Mmmmmmm.....It's so tasty too! Taste just like candy! So why don't you join all the millions of happy peppy people and get a great big bottle of Vitameatavegamin tomorrow! That's Vita-meata-vegamin! (wink)

If you didn't know, the above is a transcript from one of my favorite television scenes of all-time. In this scene, Lucy pimps a vitamin product that just so happens to be 23% alcohol and eventually ends up drunk. In the end, she slurs her words and "pops out at parties!" While no doubt hilarious, an unintended bit of wisdom can be gleaned here. Let me explain.

Having had the opportunity to grow up in the church, I was afforded the opportunity to see the lives of many play out right before my own, saved or otherwise. While certainly not all, it's my experience that a very high percentage of individuals choosing to take a different path other than Christ seem less fulfilled than others and thus, at times, "Pop out at parties!"

This suggests to me that we should take into account the results of our actions and chosen lifestyles and assist in identifying end results to our children. This enables them to make better choices for themselves as they mature. So as the Bible teaches, "There is nothing new under the sun." Because this is so, it gives us the advantage to utilize wisdom in our own decisions by analyzing the end results of the lives of others.

My advice- follow Christ and train these children while they're young to do the same. Have them put their confidence not in a great big bottle but the great big book whose ingredients are answers, healing, wisdom, and foresight. Not doing so could have greater consequences than slurring your words. Oh...and stay away from Vitameatavegimin too! It'll make you un"poop"ular! (wink)

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Inappropriate...

You know...some things in life are just down right inappropriate. Take for instance calling an obese person fat or whispering loudly with proclamation that the nearby smoker is going to die! Somber enough right! Well how about hearing your son respond with "C'mon Slim," when you tell him to dispose of the Push-Pop before bed. Or... on a more infamous level, "Kanyeezy" taking the microphone from Taylor Swift on that faithful night! The list goes on and on but you get the point. Inappropriateness (as sometimes combined with tactlessness) is all around us and it's up to us parents to make sure that our kids "don't end up fix'n their lips like collagen!..."

Now imagine my surprise when my six year old blurts out this word "inappropriate" as I caught the tail end of his conversation with his brother. Who did it and what's this inappropriateness you speak of? Lost in my thoughts of which obscenity they must be confused about THIS time, the boys began to bicker. "Dad," my youngest inquired, "Would it be inappropriate of me to ask my friends if they still ride in car seats?"

After chuckling and getting over the fact that he'd uttered his only five syllable word other than Nickelodeon in speech, I had to explain to the boy what it meant.
I mean...this was an important concept! Appropriateness could mean the difference between getting that huge contract he's bidding for in the future or simply standing against the wall for shooting spit balls at lunch in the very near!

"Son, something is inappropriate when it doesn't fit the social norm at the time. At some times certain activities are appropriate and at other times they aren't." It was then I realized that my own definition may have been a little shaky. I mean, it's so subjective -all this being "apropos." With that thought, I recalled a speech given at Princeton that I'd recently heard touching on a similar subject.

You see, as it was mentioned, we are all given special talents and gifts in life. Some can sing, some are academically gifted, and some can, with pinpoint accuracy fire spit balls across the lunch room! No matter the gifts or talents however, it is our choices, whether in speech or action, that's the most important. This because "it's harder to be kind than it is clever or talented."

So what's the remedy...how can we deKanye our kids??? Honestly, I guess it just takes time and taking advantage of plenty of teachable moments with them if they are going to be successful at it. Now that's one of the best pieces of advice of all-time!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Friday, October 8, 2010

Total Transformation...

So I was listening to the radio the other day and this ad went on and on about this new product called the "Total Transformation." A child behavior modification program for defiant child behavior problems like "oppositional defiance" disorder and all around disobedience. In layman's terms, a behavior system taught by some random gent that guarantees to change your kid's bad attitude in no less than six seconds!

What a concept I thought. To say the least, I was no less than intrigued! It birthed in me all kinds of marvelous thoughts. Perhaps it was simply a set of specific verbal commands that penetrated the unyielding psyche of young ones on some Jedi mind control level? The possibilities are endless! I could use it on any two year old I saw embarrassing themselves by yelling and screaming at their parents while lying prostrate in the pasta isle or, at the very least, freeze my kids right before they get into a sibling tussle! If not those abilities I thought, perhaps it was that titanium laced leather strap with custom hand grips that Santa never brought me!?! Whatever it was, why wouldn't any parent want this product for their children?!?

In an instant, as if their lives were flashing before my eyes, I began to think about the issues of our kids today, specifically my kids though. Like the time I heard one of them fail to address an adult without the preferential "no mam/sir," or the time when I swore I heard heavy footsteps up the stairs and then extra force as the door closed! Now at the risk of sounding a thousand years old...I think that the problem with kids today is that they don't have the same respect for adults anymore. A certain (how do you say...) reverence is missing. A reverence to which I personally desire from them and that had me almost picking up the phone and contemplating making a 1-800 call. Was I this desperate?!?

See, what I want is to revert back to a time where kids didn't invoke their rights to a lawyer while being questioned about who stole the cookies! A time when kids were respectful...and equally ignorant, blindly going around doing exactly what you told them to do. A time when they didn't look you in your eyes and say that they were gonna tell Grandma!

After giving it some thought though, I realized that I was given the secret a long time ago but had only failed to invoke it. See what you have to do is let them know when they're young. Young like, two seconds old young, still slippery young! What they really need is a good smack right after birth - let 'em know that no stuff will be taken! (Doctors had long prescribed to this notion but no longer perform this duty for whatever reason) Now, we're forced to do it ourselves (not recommended) or dial a 1-800 number to gain back our respect! Kids just loose to run wild in the streets, disrespecting the timeout and the street light! This is why, America, ***In my Obama voice*** that I've proposed a plan, now on the floor of the Senate, that calls for a nationwide crackdown on newborns all across this great nation of ours!

To be serious though, we as parents must do our due diligence and "train our children the way they should go," and it's gonna take more than six seconds to do it. It's long painstaking (this is gonna hurt me more than it is you) diligent work. In all reality, while there is a "Total Transformation" that needs to take place in the attitudes of our kids, the real transformation starts with us, the parents. See, what I really want is for us to go back to a time when parents disciplined their kids and didn't rely on teachers and the media! So with this, I lay two fingers on my temple, squint, and command you to transform your own thinking...and pick that two year old up out of the isle! You're embarrassing US!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Friday, September 3, 2010

School Daze...

Well friends, school is back in session and the routine begins once more. The early morning hygiene roll calls, the "I have nothing to wear" rants, and the "Can I sleep a little longer" pleadings! So with my oldest going into the 8th grade this year, I recalled a story from my 8th grade days as I walked her to the bus stop. It was one that brought to my remembrance how it might feel for my daughter on her first day. For me, my first day of 8th grade was a day that I'll never forget and hopefully for her, a much better ending.

To begin, I headed to the bus stop that day ready for school! With Digable Planets blasting in my Walkman, my hair was freshly faded (with a Mike Tyson part of course), my DDTP shirt was properly over sized and my Guess jeans were well...baggy! All seemed well right? Wrong! Why? My shoes were busted! Long story short, I'd went along with my neighborhood friends and bought a pair of fake Bo Jackson's only weeks before. They were supposed to be play shoes and that's what they were. By the time back to school shopping began, my parents chalked it up as a cost accounted for. "We just bought you new shoes," they said. The look on my face said it all. What was I to do?

Now while this scenario may seem trivial to you, to my 8th grade mind in the 90's, it was catastrophic! So what happened? As soon as I stepped off the bus and met up with my friends, the jokes began. "You got dem new Joe Jackson's?!?- cuz your shoes are beat!" Are those Kangaroos man?!? Those must be the new Cranks (An old "In Living Color" reference)! Needless to say, I did not find their attempts at humor funny! The problem was that everyone else did and my chances of going into the yearbook as best dressed was over on day one!

In the end, that situation made me realize the pressures my daughter must surely be going though as it pertained to acceptance with her peers. It was at that moment I slowed my pace to a stop. "Maybe you should go on to the bus stop by yourself," I said. "I'm sure you don't want to be seen with your Dad at the bus stop." What did she do? She continued her walk in her fresh Nike's and said "No, I want you to," and gave me a hug before getting on the bus. The look on my face said it all! With that, she made it a day that I'd never forget and started for her, a rather forgettable one. Now that's a routine that I could get used to.

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Monday, August 2, 2010

Playground naiveté...

So... I often hear of all this talk about how time flies.  How one day you're changing diapers and the next you’re giving your little girl away to some knight in shining armor.  Well, while taking a mental snapshot of where I am in this process, I wondered if I had time.  Time before teenage boys would begin calling my house, disguised as giddy school girls, to speak to my "precious." Time before she went on her first date, and then time before she resents me for telling her that she won't be wearing that outfit out of my house - not today!" These things I wondered and it is the following story that gave me my answer.

I’d just returned from a function of some kind when I myself was told this most wonderful story about what happened in my absence.  It's a story filled with all kinds of wonder and mirth – all wrapped up in a little bundle of naiveté!  You see, this story is that of a young suitor attempting to introduce himself to a most beautiful young lady, and from my point of view, it was marvelously told and one to which I shall forever hold dear to my heart.  In fact, I often beg to have it repeated as it brings me so much joy!

Ok, so as I imagine it, a young and beautiful girl was eyed swinging on the swings at the park one sunny evening.  Naturally, the wind began to blow through her long silky hair, gliding across her face, perhaps, reacting in her a beautiful smile.  Noticing this, after a happenstance glance across the park, the young suitor began to summon up his confidence in an attempt to inquire of her.  Sweating and nervous, he makes his way past the monkey bars, under the slide, and over the rock wall (obviously to show some sort of romantic agility).  I imagine his heart beating furiously!  Next to her, swinging just the same, sits the slightly older and equally beautiful narrator of this story.  She takes in the encounter with anticipation.  

Next, the young suitor slides his feet through the mulched covered surface, making his way closer and he stops just a few feet from her that has compelled him.

"Excuse me," he said.
"Huh?" she replied softly.

At this point, all attention was on him as both beauties turned theirs to him.  He must have been wondering if she had a boyfriend as he mustered up his confidence to speak once more.  She must have been thinking, "Boy, you're too close...don't get kicked!"

"Do you go with anybody?" He stuttered out.

"Why what do you mean?" The young dame inquired.

"You know, do you “GO” with anybody?"

Wonderfully confused and naive, the beautiful young girl continued in her swinging aspirations as the narrator interjected:

"Boy, she doesn't even know what you’re talking about. Go on somewhere!"  (Exit stage left goes boy in dusty shoes!)

Without any further questioning, the story ends there and the young dame, my daughter, along with the narrator, my sister, keep swinging and live to tell this story to me many times over.  It's brought me so much joy to know that my daughter is SO not into boys.  Isn't it great to know that there's still time for me my friends?  ***whispering*** There's still time!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Tears in the outfield...

He sat hunched over Indian style on a small dirt mound just outside of the dugout. His arms sat folded on his dusted baseball jersey and the lid of his hat sat covering his eyes. They were tear stained. I stood only a few feet away acknowledging his feelings and thought of how to best approach. You see, the events of the past few minutes had changed the course of his "what-was-to-be." Knowing this, I could only think of what shouldn't.

His "what-should-have-been" consisted of a win taking his team to the championship game. What shouldn't have been was a team of eight and nine year old trembling youths standing snot nosed before me. Sure they'd lost the game but so what, there would be other games next year. Sure their season had ended and their expectations failed to meet fruition, but I say verily unto you...so what again! The lesson all of my kids learned that day was not about winning and loosing, nor was it about dusting yourself off after a loss. The lesson they learned that day had in fact nothing to do with baseball at all.

Friends, what those kids witnessed that day was nothing short of a travesty. It was a day filled with an assorted display of what-not-to-do's by their own coaching staff. It was what caused my son's reaction and that of his teammates. It was watching one of their assistant coaches curse and threaten the umpire after a bad call. A mistake of drastic proportions that then followed suit with head coach being dismissed as well. This left another coach and myself there to lift the chins and wipe the noses (not in my job description) of the lifeless players. Talk about a son watching his dad converse with the police across the field while at bat... then talk about tears in the outfield. Wait...there's no crying in baseball! Well I guess it is when it's not about baseball and it's not a game anymore.

As we headed home that evening and my son lay prostrate in the back seat of the car, they learned that lesson. Every minute of it was spent explaining that in life bad calls happen all the time but...so what! Your reaction and the way in which you conduct yourselves after said "bad call" is what keeps all the "what-should-be's" away! And as my son learned, those "be's" sting worst than the real ones!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.
Miracles and Blessings
Tron

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Friday, April 30, 2010

Diligence...

With a smile on his face my son introduced me to his joy, his project...his seedling. It was a cabbage plant I think, and he seemed to cherish it as his gaze focused on its budding leaves. He then went on to explain to me how he had planted the seed, how he had watered it, and how he had fought for the perfect window position at school for maximum light. I thought great, but why all the enthusiasm? He'd had the opportunity to do this several times in the past with each seedling ending up withered and dry. This time, he beamed, "Whoever can grow the largest plant gets a thousand dollars!"

Ah...a bit of motivation always does the trick and this dude was bent on what he could do with one thousand dollars. He went on..."I could buy one thousand pieces of candy, a dirt bike, and oh...a house! The boy must have envisioned himself as Prince Hakeem! He was sadly mistaken of course but I thought the enthusiasm was healthy.

For the next two weeks he strategically moved his seedling to different widows based on the position of the sun during morning and evening hours. He fed it plant food, and even sat me down to explain how important it was that I water it while he was away. I understood. He then raised his shoulders while rubbing his hands together. He was ready!

Friends, that seedling never had a chance! Last I saw it, the leaves were crumpled on the office floor and the plant, well...it had long dried up taking with it our efforts and his house! The death of the seedling was an interesting event, I thought to myself as I glanced at the cabbage corpse. It's just like life and symbolic in a way. It is, in essence, the reality of life with the truth being that no matter what you have done, it's the actions of today that determine your tomorrows. That we must be diligent in our efforts and keep focused if we are to succeed. It's the difference between those who succeed and those who don't - whether your fruit will be dried leaves or one thousand dollars! What a valuable lesson the seedling sacrificed its life for. Make it count people - and pick your fruit...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Surprise...

So…it was a cool winter’s evening and my family and I had plans to attend a play.
Near intermission, my twelve year old daughter began to whisper in my ear that she didn't feel well. 

"What's the matter?" I said.

"My stomach hurts.  I need to go," she replied.

"Ok, do you need to go to the restroom?”

"No, I need to go home.  I'm really not feeling well," she sulked.

It was then that I silently thought to myself...Was this it? Was this women's day sick?!?  Was this a… I need to stop by CVS on the way home - stomach hurt sick?  I was horrified...and crying on the inside!  I was not prepared for this.  I mean, I hadn't lifted nearly enough weights or even brought a gun to at least pretend to know how to clean one in front of her teenage suitors!  In addition to being horrified, I looked over at the boys and they were just plain restless and had long lost interest in the play.  They had simply resorted to arguing over who would play the PSP. 

As intermission wound down, I'd made up my mind.  It was obviously time to leave and to confiscate the PSP!  We then made our way to the car and magically it seemed as if my daughter felt better but the boys were still fighting.  In fact, they were near having me act out that scene on Good Times with Penny and the iron! (Only joking)

So, we arrived home and I pulled into the garage and everyone exited the car including my sister who rode with us.  When I opened the door, my only thoughts were "Don't beat em' while you're angry...don't beat em' while you're angry!  My face was tight! It was then that my youngest went sprinting back to the corner of the garage crying and my oldest boy later tells me that his knees went weak! 

I'd been GOT!  It seems that my daughter’s sickness was all a part of the plan to get me home.  Imagine my surprise when I walked through the door.  Lights were flashing and folks yelled surprise!  It was all unexpected and my mouth was left agape.  As I took it all in and retrieved the youngin shivering in the corner of the garage, I was filled with joy like never before.  My house had never seen so many people and not once had I ever been thrown a surprise birthday party.  There was food, balloons, and even decorations, but most importantly, those who desired to share that moment with me….way down in Timbuktu land!  This was, if it ever had a face…LOVE…

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father.  Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

Friday, April 23, 2010

Preclusion...

So I'm in a box.
Everything that I've learned about my myself and the world,
I've learned within this box.
Light seeps in it, and I can see.
Cool breezes blow, and it cools me.
My belly is full, because THEY feed me,
I am content here because I can't see thee.

Another looks up to a blue sky and the sun shines on him.
It looks down on him.
He can see that it makes things grow around him.
He can point to it - the sun,
knowing the place from where the light comes.
He feels the winds blow also,
but he can see its effect on the trees.
They sway to it and it stirs the seas.
He eats and his appetite too is full.
He's much better off now because from the same box he was pulled.

You see, the thought of escape from the box eludes me,
because my comfort level within it precludes me.
I don't really care what goes on outside and to thee,
because no one has ever told me that it's not just about me.


Friends, one of the greatest gifts that you can give your children is to show them the world and where they stand within it. Let them experience different cultures, ways of life and what others before them have accomplished. I believe that it really sets them free. It's the universal key to unlocking slavery.

Take them to a wide open area and see if they won't take off running! It's their nature. Open up the world for them and they'll run just because. Motivate them...open up their box!...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Remember...

The dust rose from the catchers mitt signaling the end for him.  His sixth swing of the bat was a clean whiff.  I saw it from the first base line.  I also saw the batter's face as he removed his helmet.  It was sheer disappointment.  It was the first time he had struck out all season.  Immediately, our eyes met and the glances between us confirmed an understanding of sorts.  It was simply that no one was perfect.

As we made our way to the game earlier that evening, his confidence turned into boasting as he relived the triumphs of previous games and practices.  "Baseball is easy," he said.  "I always get at least a base hit."  In truth, he was correct, in reality however, he was sadly mistaken. While he continued in his boastful banter, I brought into the conversation as many sports stars as I could.  "Jordan missed more than 9,000 times. The great “Bambino, the Sultan of Swat,” Babe Ruth himself struck out 1,330 times!"  The difference, I said, was that they kept trying - that's the secret - remember.  "Dad," he proclaimed, "I'm different." My reply was repeated- remember!

When the inning had ended and we met in the dugout after his strikeout, you could see in his face the embarrassment.  His head was down as he whispered the words… "I don't want to play anymore."  With a stiff tug on his baseball cap, I lifted his head and whispered back – remember!  He then reluctantly trotted out to cover third base.

What would he do I thought.  How would he react when it's his turn to bat again?  With the common knowledge that everyone faces this in life at some point or another, I was more concerned with his reaction than anything else.  Would he keep trying?  My stomach turned inside.

"TJ, you're up," the manager yelled out the following inning.  I looked away.  His first swing resembled his last and so did the following four.  With a maximum of six pitches to each batter, this would be it.  I focused to catch his eye and didn't give any advice.  Frankly, he'd been given all he needed. 

He hit the ball into the outfield and sprinted to first base!  Inside I wanted to sprint with him but I didn't.  Inside I wanted to run up and tell him some Earl and Tiger Woods type stuff like, “Let the legend grow,” but I didn’t do that either.  I simply smiled and pointed to my head indicating our "remember" conversation.  He nodded back while high fiving the opposing team’s first base coach.

Wouldn't you know it though, the boy waited until the last pitch to make a hit on his subsequent tries.  I nearly passed out every time! It's an odd thing, baseball and life, I mean.  The secret of both of is to remember to just keep trying and that no one is perfect…

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father.  Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

Friday, April 16, 2010

Foresight...

As we walked in, the place was abuzz with joy unable to be contained. The proof was found in the numerous children found running snaggletoothed in various vectors. Silence was not welcome here. In fact, it must have been prohibited. The surrounding area looked to be as wide open as a Texas plain. It was filled with attractions and contraptions sure to capture the attention of the young.

Here, the colors alone put one into overload and I slowly felt their hands slip from mine. It was obvious that they favored the busy experience of this new play place called "LOL Station." Immediately, my mind drifted to my younger days. Me running through Chuck-E-Cheese's, tugging on his tail, climbing through the crawl spaces. Man those were the days!

So with a tug from my youngest to relive those days, I found my knees and back resenting those days! In fact, I felt like I should have been prohibited! Obviously, I slowly gravitated to the parent (Can you see me Daddy?) section.

While sitting there though, I realized a change. First my knees stopped hurting and then my mind began to wander to possible scenarios of future events. I kinda felt like that guy in that 80's show "Quantum Leap." You know, where the guy was always given an impossible mission, that when complete, would change the future. My mission...to allow my kids to have as much fun as possible on these attraction contraptions without having to visit the emergency room!

It was then I realized that my entire way of thinking had changed. That if I was to survive my tenure as a parent successfully, I would need super powers just like the "Leap" guy. What I needed was foresight, and that mysterious "Ziggy" fellow provided it for him. Without it, Leap guy was doomed, with it, he always came through.

I mean, since they day my kids were born, I've saved them exactly 1,276 times....wait 1,277 (I forgot to add the impromptu heimlich maneuver I performed down at the local Applebee's the other night). Bottom line is...Keep that cautious eye open. From the time they learn to walk, they just find ways to hurt themselves - Pretty inventive these little people are!

Makes you think though. I'm glad my father has foresight and cares for me. I can rest in knowing that his will for me is perfect. Now that's real joy unable to be contained. I just have to remember to not let my hand slip from his...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Success...

For those of you that didn't know, I recently had the pleasure of teaching a group of third graders the art of computer programming. For nearly five months, these select group of kids that included my son, stayed after school for the purpose of competing against other county third graders. Their mission was to create a project about "Going Green." You know, saving energy.

Now being as though I'd never actually worked with any other kids besides my own academically, I learned two things early on. The first was that the public school system really needs to do a better job screening their instructors, and secondly, that the same methods of teaching I used on my kids would not fly.

See in sports and coaching, if the kids get out of hand, you can just make them run laps or sit the pine. In a computer lab, running laps really aren't conducive and... there is no pine! At home, if they get out of hand, well...they might meet "Sensei." He's a "black belt" I own that holds nteenth degrees in attitude alignment. In fact, often times, only a mere mentioning of Sensei brings about a whole new attitude. Sensai was not conducive to the computer lab either!

With this being the case, finding ways to motivate their genius minds was nothing short of a task. Some wanted to play games, some wanted attention, but most just wanted to eat snacks while recording fart sounds on the microphone! Nevertheless, I wanted them to understand that they had the power to create their own dreams. That "IF" they grasped these concepts "THEN" anything was possible. That "WHILE" they did their best, their future was sure to be a success!

What I found by the end was that it was extremely rewarding. That the kids rose to the occasion. That even though they didn't place in the competition, most of them had gotten the point. They understood what success was; that their reward would be more than a mere plastic trophy. Their experience would be "Forever" looped within them.

After the competition, I looked on the faces of those robot kids who took home the first place trophy. It was sad. They didn't seem to have fun at all. I'd bet what they really wanted to do was to make fart sounds!...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Friday, March 19, 2010

Mistakes...

I once found a blender blade drying on the kitchen counter and thought it a good idea to bring it to my mother - I fell on it and ended up with 8 stitches!  That was a mistake!  I twice brought houses at the height of the real estate boom - the boom busted thereafter.  Those were mistakes too!   Then, I thrice had to be sent to the hospital for swallowing a penny, plum seed, and a hot dog.  All mistakes!  Man I've made plenty of mistakes in my life.  Some of which I choose not to expound on today, all of which I've learned from, and none of them will I repeat again- God willing!

 

With all my mistakes though, with all OUR mistakes as parents even, I think it important to explain to our children our mistakes.  This because to hide your children from your mistakes serves only to booby-trap their very destiny.  It also serves to illegitimize your own struggles in the process.  Now I've come across several detractors of this thinking.  It is to them I rebut...“Those that do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it." So I ask, if this rings true, then it is our responsibility to illuminate our history –all of it.  Not doing so would leave them just as vulnerable to your mistakes as you were...and doomed! 

 

You know, I’ve learned in life that while it’s true that there is nothing in life more powerful than experiencing a lesson first hand, there is also nothing more beneficial than being able to avoid those lessons through wisdom.  So parents, what wisdom will you impart? Show them your scars and stitches, illuminate your history to solidify theirs.  Share your story and use wisdom in doing so.  I do.  My kids have to hear my story every time they even think about eating a plum...

 

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father.  Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

 

 

 

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Discovery...

So "It takes two" had just dropped and I was in music heaven! I'd saved up all my report card money and was about to make it rain down at the local Discount Mart! (SE stand up!) So, with money in hand, I walked over to the cassette tape section which just happened to be right past the vinyl section. (Old heads stand up!) Finally, I had found what I was looking for. It was there leaning up against the wall encased in mummified armored plastic! I walked out of the store with 4 things that day...Rob Base's and Easy Rock's single, the Prince's "Parent's Just don't understand" tape, The Temptation's Christmas" tape, and a love for music.
Later that evening, I popped the tapes in my laptop sized - level 10 school fund-raiser issued Walkman and memorized nearly every song off those tapes. It was that day I decided that I would be an artist. This after singing "Silent Night" to myself for hours. I had come to discover that I sounded exactly like David Ruffin!

The next day at school, sometime before word got out about the mandatory Glee club tryouts, I was sure I wanted to sing...but just as sure I didn't want to be singing with Glee in the club! "It wouldn't make sense," I told myself. I was a 3rd grade basketball prodigy at the time and... I was scared. So I tanked my audition...but my teacher loved it!!! I thought I sounded horrible. She didn't. My head was pumped up. I then sung for real. She didn't love it or like it anymore! My Glee club offer was retracted. I was embarrassed - long story short.

See "what had happened" was that I'd been singing to myself without anyone to comment for so long that I actually thought I sounded decent. Well time has revealed that I'm not a singer nor will I have the opportunity to rock a baby blue cummerbunn and bow tie in front of thousands! It's ok though, I still have a love for music and can (with my inside voice) sound just like Maxwell!

So, as parents, I say spend as much time with your kids as possible. Discover what it is that they like to do, what they're good at, and help them cultivate their gifts and talents. This means that you may or may not have to encourage them to possibly sing with their "inside voice!" (Parents stand up!) Save them from my Glee club embarrassment...because, "It Takes Two!"

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.
Miracles and Blessings
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Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Friends...

A great rapper once posed the following question about friends..."How many of us have them - ones we can depend on?" A few days ago I had a rare opportunity to which I took full advantage regarding this subject. This after I was pulled aside by my daughter's karate instructor. Well "Mr. Mason, she said, it seems your daughter is being influenced by a certain individual. An individual causing trouble. An individual that may no longer be attending the institution. As wonderful and well behaved as she is, I've noticed a change when the two get together." So I stand there blank faced and take it all in before pulling my daughter to the side.

"So what happened?,"I asked. "Well...my friend made fun of the instructor and I was made to run five laps," she exclaimed. She also added the infamous...wait for it..."I didn't even do anything" line. After confirming her story with the teacher, I thought five laps a pretty cheap price to pay to learn such a lesson. The lesson that punishment by association is alive and well...so choose your friends wisely!

What famous last words those are. "I didn't even do anything." It has been screamed by hardened criminals from the rooftops of Alcatraz, whiny five year olds in the bowels of the time-out corner, and of course Whodini concerts! For Kids, choosing friends can be difficult so as parents we need to teach them to make good decisions and to know the real meaning of friendship. As for that individual influencing my daughter...I'm not sayn' karate chop her in the kisser...Nah!...just that my daughter should try and be a positive influence for her...before she leaves.

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Irregardless...

So this morning my son wakes up on the "wrong side of the bed," figuratively speaking. His attitude totally passed the sheet kicking level. He even had the nerve to withhold the sanctioned "Yes Dad" response required for all instruction - A Mason family law enacted, I'm sure, in accordance with the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. Its purpose is two-fold. One, to rule out the old "I didn't hear what you said hence I didn't do anything" excuse, and two, so I don't have to repeat myself. A win-win I think...it calls for swift comprehension while opening the door for expedited corrective action. Action that could include but is not limited to "attitude adjustment by leather strap rearrangement," and time-out...I'm not a complete savage!

Now why this mornings attitude was elevated I have no clue but it had become a pattern that I was beginning to notice. A pattern that I didn't like and a pattern way above my apportioned pre-six o'clock grace level. I mean, I calmly explained that in my house he had no choice but to wake up happy. This simply because if one wakes up to see the sun rise, breathe the air, and sees fit to take off one's favorite high water PJ's to put on one's favorite high water (washed once too many times) skinny jeans while "tuding out," he is deemed disrespectful. And...as outlined during the time of the Proclamation, disrespect across the board carries a sentence of 5-10 and I don't mean minutes in the corner!

Long story short, by mornings end the boy sung and hollered and it didn't come out sounding like those boys singing "Fair Eastside" in "Lean on Me!" Afterward, we sat and had a little talk and I think he understood that he should control himself and act accordingly "irregardless" to how he felt. To recognize that life is a gift and should be honored, especially if he wanted to be, thenceforward free to see the sun rise, breathe the air, and wear those jeans again!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Monday, March 8, 2010

Separation...

Separation- It's an act or instance of separating or the state of being separated. In other words, "A ripping or tearing apart of something that was once whole." For me, the feeling equates to loneliness. This because being a single Dad in my situation can oftentimes leave me just plain lonely. So lonely in fact that I sometimes find myself strumming away my loneliness in single player mode of Guitar Hero, bending the whammy bar with such emotion as to drown out my sorrows. No one to teach, no one to body slam, and no one to say no to when they wake me up at 5:30 am wanting an ice cream samitch and/or assistance finding a random toy no one has seen for weeks.

Ok, ok...being separated from my kids from time to time isn't exactly that bad. Actually their absence gives me time to catch up on some things like household chores, working out, and spending time with family and friends. I've found that maintaining the proper balance of all aspects of life is the only way to go.
With my experiences though, I've pondered what my life would be like if I had PKS syndrome, also known as "Permanent Kid Separation." Besides the certainty that I'd no doubt find myself in some kind of serious trouble, I'd be distraught. The thought of it terrifies me leaving me baffled on how fathers could walk away from such a responsibility. I guess I understand the whole "out of sight-out of mind" scenario when it comes to...let's say...delicious turtle brownies, but not kids!

Now far be it from me to judge anyone but fathers need to step up if you've stepped off. Leaving them out in this cold world powerless to influences like the Jonas brothers, gender confusion, and that horrible show "Suite life on Deck" is just plain negligent...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.
Miracles and Blessings
Tron

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Friday, March 5, 2010

The Climb...

So the other day the kids and I were riding in the car singing Miley Cyrus' "The Climb" when the melody starts to fade and I actually listened to the words. I'm thinking - Pretty good song young Cyrus wrote! If you hadn't heard it, just take my word for it, if you have, then I'm a little embarrassed! It's kind of a teeny-bopper song but the message is much more mature. She's talking about the road to getting where you're going in life. How it's not about the end, meaning the fame and fortune, the "cars and the clothes" but the climb in how you got there.

Before I caught myself saying "Real talk," I turned to the kids and muted the radio. They all had that look on their faces like, "ahh...here he goes again!" So I turned it back up and held my thoughts until it was over. They knew full well what was coming next- "What do the lyrics mean?" I asked. After a pause, my youngest finally said something. He asked, "What's a lear-wick and why do I only have seven letters in my name?"

So obviously no one had an answer so obviously...my dissertation began! I thought I explained it rather well. I went into how all the struggles they're sure to face in this life are there to make them stronger. That there can be no progress without struggle, and that generally, happiness comes in a package deal with hard work and determination. In the end I hope they got the message and realized that obtaining happiness through this "hard work and determination" is a much higher seed than anything material.

I thought this message to be relatively profound since the more predominant Hip-Hop culture advertises otherwise - "WORD!" Now whether or not they received young Cyrus' or my message has yet to be determined. I guess...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.
Miracles and Blessings
Tron

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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Opportunity...

As we all know, doors open and close really fast when it comes to opportunity. One thing I've learned is that when it comes aknocking it doesn't knock long and if you're not in the right position to open the door, you miss out. It's really that simple. The trick is to position the "best you" to understand what the opportunity is you want and strategically prepare yourself to obtain it. If you want extra desert, I tell my kids, position the items in your room in such a way as to increase the probability!

This weekend I had the opportunity to watch a show on lottery winners. It documented the winners lives after the millions came. It was then that you could clearly see how the love of money and being unprepared for opportunity nearly destroyed all of their lives. Some considered it a curse they wouldn't wish on anyone, some became recluses, and some watched their lives wither away staring at the walls. I say all that to say that it further proves my point. These people obtained their opportunities via the luck of the draw and not from self preparation. I really do think that there's something to be said about that. It's kinda like rewarding your kid when they've done nothing. They develop an absurd since of entitlement setting them up for utter failure. They are either unable to handle opportunity when presented, unable to grasps it, or sad faced because I won't let them have Pudding pops!

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Blindness...

I've been roaming around always looking down at all I see. Painted faces fill the places I can't reach. You know that I could use somebody. Someone like you and all you know, and how you speak.
​Countless lovers undercover of the street. You know that I could use somebody. Someone like you. Off in the night while you live it up, I'm off to sleep- waging war to shake the poet and the beat. I hope it's going to make you notice someone like me. Go and let it out -someone like you, somebody. I've been roaming around always looking down at all I see...

For those of you choosing not to live under a rock, you'd recognize that these words put to music earned for many weeks the top spot on nearly all music charts. In addition, it also grabbed the attention of countless youths and adults alike. It's a song written by a band calling themselves the "Kings of Leon." It was this song that I found my kids and I repeating as we made our way home one evening. "Play it again," they said. "I can't," I replied, "it's the radio." Maybe it was the beat? Maybe the melody? Maybe the words? Whatever it was, like many of its listeners, I was pulled in and we repeated the catchy tune in unison.

You see, my assumption was that it was God they were referring to in the song. That it was Him looking down. In the end it was not...and I was blind in my thinking. I was blind because of the beat and my assumptions and it wasn't until I became curious of these lyrics that I discovered its meaning. Who is this being always roaming around, I thought. Well we know that when God asked "Where have you come from?" Someone answered, "From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it." Who is this being looking down? We also know that this same being is described as the "prince of the power of the air." Who wages wars? Who could shake the poet and the beat? Need I say more? Need I say that I was captivated by what appeared to be good at first glance?

Now whether you believe as I believe or not, I urge us all to open our eyes and ears in an attempt to analyze the words we let flow from our own lips, not to mention sing in unison with our children. I say teach them to not only be on the look out for the "Angel of light," but for ideals for which you do not support. It could be...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Friday, February 26, 2010

TAG...

I remember it like it was yesterday. My father had come home with a piece of machinery that blew my mind. I was about ten at the time and had never seen the insides of one. I had asked on several occasions at school but for some reason my computer teachers proved both apprehensive and defensive when asked to gut one. The day that chassis opened was as if the expanse of my mind grew. He had made a profound difference in my world blazing a path to which I would always continue. I saw circuits, tiny batteries and the geekiest word of all-time, the motherboard!

I was enamored, and even more so when I found that the DOS prompt had been bypassed. It was the Windows era and was as if the floodgates of heaven had been opened. Needles to say, one of my passions is no doubt computers and has long stood the test of time unlike previous flings like basketball or card collecting.

Now while I've found my love in computers, it is true that my concubine is writing. Aside from those though, I actually find it rather difficult naming my actual gifts and talents when asked as most people do. So difficult that at first all I could come up with was Kite flying. I mean, I don't like to brag but in a parallel universe somewhere where Golf ceases to exist and Kite Flying is king, there I stand, the superstar figure of Kite Flying. You know, sometimes I feel as if were born in the wrong era? Take for instance this Tiger Woods fellow, the world renown billionaire sports figure. Sure we know him today as the "Cheating Cablanasian" jokingly referred to as "Slyger," but what if he'd lived before golf was invented. He'd be a pauper! This because his uncanny ability to use a stick to place a ball within a foot of a hole five hundred yards away would be useless. So here I stand, a would be billionaire Kite runner forced to showcase my talents on empty soccer fields but I digress.

In reality though, I think it best that we sit down with our kids and help them find where they are talented and gifted. If they excel in learning, push them harder! If they excel in art, encourage them more! If they have an uncanny ability to get in and out of their shoes without untying them, tie them tighter...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Humor me...

They act as if I was born yesterday - asking me all these questions! Yes I know why the chicken crossed the road...all 428 variations of it! Yes I know why six is afraid of seven and for the last time, yes I'm glad you didn't say banana! You know these kids nowadays think themselves the next Dave Chappelle because they make squeaky sounds with their arm pits and whisper to each other about what happened to the little boy named Booty-itch! Don't they know I've told those same jokes and pulled those same pranks? I mean I still have the contorted arms to prove it and could probably still play a mean arm-fiddle if I chose to!

So here they are walking around entertaining themselves as if they've just invented walking around with their shoes on their knees! But, on occasion, I must admit I am caught off guard. Like the time my daughter walked into my room complaining of a sore neck. She then proceeds to forcefully jerk her head and fall lifelessly to the floor. The sound of the concealed plastic cup smashing under her sweater as she fell nearly caused me to faint! While she got me that time, she must know that ole Dad has a few more tricks left up his sleeve - and I'm saving the best for last!

Well friends, it seems my kids are growing up and doing a pretty good job acclimating themselves into society. They are all doing well in school while excelling at home in fun and games, inventing new ways (so they think) to enjoy life. Wait, I don't believe I've ever requested an invite to a Kumate for my 9th birthday or even a Golden ticket for my 6th but you know what I mean. And yes, they couldn't be more serious!

I say all this to say that life is just as full of opportunities to laugh as there are to be serious. It's a balance I think. I mean, remember how we grew up...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.
Miracles and Blessings
Tron


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Friday, February 19, 2010

Caution...

The kid was awesome. No doubt one of the brightest I'd come across and for some reason he thought Computer Science interesting. "Is it time to begin," he asked eagerly. "No we have a few minutes, I'm still setting up," I said. As the kid walked away I noticed an object dangling from the adjustable strap on the back of his baseball cap. "Hey buddy, what's that, I asked" "Oh, this? It's my invention!" He then proceeded to unstrap the scrungi from the hat loop and open the contents of the old school plastic film roll case. Inside was a latex glove, two band-aids, alki swabs, hand sanitizer, and a defibrillator. Ok, I was joking about the latter. "It's my first-aid kit...Duh" he tells me. By that point I was sorry I'd asked.

Now on my way home later that evening my son began his endless question session. "Why do birds fly?" "What does the yellow light mean?" Now I paused when he asked this, but being as though this was pre-red light-green light period in school," I gave the lad a break. "Well son, the yellow light means to take caution and slow down." "Well how come you "take closet" when it's a green light too?

In pondering this thought, he was correct. I'd noticed that on many occasions I'd slow down at an intersection no matter the light color. Not only would I slow down but I'd look around to make sure no other cars were coming and then proceed. "Because son, you can't just rely on signals, you have to look for other signs too."

As in life, I've found this to be a top 10 rule for living. This because you must be careful not to believe anything everyone says. Now don't get me wrong, I think it great to have faith in people but the bottom line is to "take closet" to protect yourself. There are wolves in sheep clothing everywhere you turn. "Don't get eaten," I said. "Why not?" he asked...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Thursday, February 18, 2010

Changes...

So we said our goodbyes and no one shed a tear for their dear brother. We had discussed what the plan would be. We would gather up all his things and just drop him off - simple as that. It needed to be done I think. I had no choice. I'd hate to say it but this dude, to me, was the cause of the single greatest pain in my side ever! Look don't judge me...the constant whining, his constant lack of disrespect, his outright gall... all of it had me within seconds of writing up his eulogy. I didn't want that! What I wanted was for the pain and suffering to end -positively!

You see, as we all gathered in the car with the four of them in the back seat, they all seemed happy enough. The littlest one was without a seat belt and a clue that he would soon be betrayed. His life as he knew it would cease to exist. I mean, I tried to explain it to him but it was like it went right in one ear and out the other. I said, "Son, I've tried, your siblings have tried, but we can't go on like this. It's not you it's me!" He just looked up at me and begged for my food. We went on a walk that day. That was the last father-son time we had together before I kissed him on his cheek to be handed over.

The next day was different though. I woke up with a renewed attitude. It seems the previous day had birthed in me this song. I found myself humming..."Just waking up in the morning gotta thank God. I don't know but today seems kind of odd. No barking from the DOG-DOG-DOG... Then the weight of what I had done hit me like a brick! What had I done!?! In my distress I had promised my kids a kitten...

To read more please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Monday, February 15, 2010

Revenge...

It was there I found myself... I was sitting silently engulfed in darkness as the sounds of those screaming in terror were growing increasingly horrific. The gore was more than anything I had ever experienced before and by that point it was hard for me to tell the difference between make believe and reality. If it wasn't real, like they kept telling me, I thought, then why are they jumping? Why are they screaming, and why did I just mess my corduroys?

For me, peeking through my fingers that day proved a total shock and was not at all what I was expecting. What I had expected was the fruition of my daydreams. Daydreams conjured by my time waiting in suspended anticipation for nearly two weeks. The reason for my excitement you ask? Why it was the big screen debut of my favorite childhood character and it was going to be bumpin', I told myself.

Before entering the theatre, I remember glaring at the marquee poster with the giant letters staring back at me. It read "Rainbow Brite and the Star Stealer!" Finally the day had come I thought as I stared at it with amazement. This until I was abruptly whisked away into the adjacent theatre by my older cousins and their friends.

That's where my nightmare would soon begin and where I'd find myself sitting soiled in the darkness. You see upon taking our seats, everyone seemed just as jovial as I and I for one was ready to have unveiled before me the secrets of Rainbow Brite! However, it would not be so that day. Here there was no mention of the colorful superstar character. Only of some guy they affectionately referred to as Freddy! They also kept going on and on about how he would get his revenge??? At five years old, I sat there with my endless bucket of popcorn imagining this thing called revenge. Maybe I'll get some, I'd hoped - it sounded delicious!

To read more and to find out what happened, please be sure to purchase a copy of my soon to be published book chronicling my life as a single father. Also, feel free to donate toward its costs if you so choose by clicking the donate button @ http://chroniclesofasinglefather.blogspot.com. Thanks for taking this journey with me.

Miracles and Blessings

Tron

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Friday, February 12, 2010

Vigilance...

I could not believe my eyes. There I sat in total disbelief. Why hadn't my eyes been opened before? Was I really that innocent back then? With a click of the mouse I had to pause the YouTube session. I was torn on whether or not I should continue. The images of blind construction workers being enslaved by these cave dwelling puppet like creatures may be too much for the kids I thought. Furthermore, why the creepy dirty old man whose only companion was a dingy mutt in desperate need of a bath. I mean, I wouldn't let my kids come within 10 feet of this guy. He was so dirty in fact that he didn't have roaches, no no, he didn't have mice, or rats even. It was far worse!  This characters' crib had been infested by free running "Fraggles!"

So in my old age it seems my tolerance for this sort of thing was near zero and the kids groove to the opening credits of Fraggle Rock was temporarily interrupted.  All I wanted was for them to experience some of my fond childhood shows because theirs are so creepy. I mean who could forget the controversy about those weird looking Teletubbies? Or perhaps the creepy face of the Blue's Clues host? So here we have a grown man with a baby butt smooth face, dressed up in colorful long sleeve shirts (obviously to cover his heroine marked arms) attempting to engage in dialogue with your kids! I'm no dummy, I saw where that was going from the very beginning. It was a setup and only a matter of time before he's caught wearing his rapist glasses rolling up on some unsuspecting five year old in an elementary school parking lot while holding his...Blue's Clues doll!

I know what I'll do, I thought. You can't go wrong with ole Paddington Bear! He had this awesome accent and he never did anything wrong. No harm in that right? So wrong! It seemed he was the inspiration for all the aforementioned. So a bear walks around town mid day going commando in a half opened duffel coat and a hat nearly covering his eyes.  Need I say more?

Parents, all I'm saying is that the good ole days may not have necessarily been so good and we need to heighten our vigilance levels. I say keep an eye on these new shows being pushed into your kids heads by these freaks! It seems our only option is the TBN Network. It's the only station bringing joy and comfort to our kids with a Christian message. We'll...decide for yourself. I found my kids glaring without blink at this one show. To my distress, I also found a pair of rapist glasses looking back! Don't believe me??? Check it out for yourself @ http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qQ77D9JXJSc.  Possibly the creepiest thing I've ever seen!  I couldn't click away fast enough!  Stay vigilant!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Freedom...

Once upon a time in the land Far Far Away stood a mansion with many rooms and each room boasted many windows. As it stood on this particular day, each window was closed all for this one which sat a beautiful yellow canary in its cage. The caged bird tweeted the most wonderful songs and his master adored him. Often, to encourage song, he would place the cage near the windowsill as other birds would join in with the canary. The bird, always with hopes of being released, imagined his master doing just that and so freedom became his inspiration for singing.

As the canary sat on the windowsill one evening a robin began to question why he sang so grand. "Why to be released," the canary tweeted. "The more I sing, the closer I get to gaining my freedom." The robin was saddened by the canary's since of delusion. This as the canary asked, "Can you tell my family of my plight and return to me the secret of freedom? In wondrous pity, the robin was off in the direction the canary had explained.  When the robin arrived to his destination he informed the first of their relatives' circumstance. Then, swiftly upon hearing the news of his capture, the kin canary fell dead to the ground. The robin quickly left both confused and in mourning having taken regret of his involvement.

Very shortly after, the robin made his way back to the windowsill and observed the canary singing as if the cage door would be opened any second. "Canary, I must inform you that upon hearing the news of your imprisonment, a kin of yours fell dead to the ground, "I am truly sorry," the robin chirped. Following this news the canary's song heightened to such a point as to captivate its owner. Then, at climax captivation, the canary fell both silent and dead to the ground as well. The robin, in total disbelief flew away confused and perched himself in observance until putting two and two together. He was the carrier of a fatal disease that killed anyone he contacted. Sadly, the robin spent the rest of his days in solitude.

Friends, as you are well aware, becoming a parent brings with it a whole heap of responsibility, new decisions we are forced to make, and in addition, new freedoms to which we never expected. This freedom being to love those who are made in your image, your children. You know, sometimes as a single father I forget this and bring myself to believe my freedoms would multiply if my circumstances were different but the fact is that I'd just end up like that robin spending the rest of my days diseased and in solitude. See what the robin failed to realize was that upon seeing the canary in distress, his master opened the cage door and the canary quickly grasped its freedom. In the end, the robin wasn't diseased at all but was in fact carrying the secret of freedom. It is that same freedom we hold deep within us as parents but can only be revealed to us when we make the decision to stick around.

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Monday, February 8, 2010

History...

In a palatial estate on a vast sea of land sits a little boy on a white porch. The sun rays beam down seeing fit to illuminate that which it cultivates. Rolling hills of green grass, blooming dog woods and crepe myrtles stand erect in the distance. With his legs dangling from the porch swing, his eyes concentrate on the words being taught to him. Some words he is unable to sound out, and some meanings he is unable to comprehend, but he will one day.

The boys' father sits with him steadying the swing as the motion of it lulls him to remember a time when he sat with his own father sounding out these very words. Pausing, he takes a sip of his wife's lemonade and looks up and takes in both the scenery and perspective. The land the estate stands - purchased hundreds of years ago, the porch on which they sit- built in latter years, but the words they are reading proving more ancient than either. These are a people who know their history, who know the struggles of their ancestors. The direction in which they are to go proves illuminated by a blazing path set straight before them. It speaks to them and its voice is "The Chronicles."

For those of you that are unaware, my purpose for creating "The Chronicles" is to provide some form of a lasting legacy for future generations. To eventually provide a window into their past and be that forceful wind pushing them toward excellence birthed from the very breath of life breathed in me. I ask you, is my dream too far fetched?

Friends, together we've seen a man who once would have been considered three-fifths of a man become President of these United States. We've also, through outlets such as writing, can experience the lives of such great persons as Frederick Douglass or Booker T. Washington. All of these gentleman I admire. All to which I hope to be held in the same esteem, and all whose books I hope mine to adjacent on the bookshelves within the library of that palatial estate hundreds of years from now.

So you are aware, "The Chronicles" is now in the late stages of editing and having the first edition published and it is this that I would like you to be of support. If you've read my writings and appreciate its purpose, I ask for a donation toward its publishing cost. I've added a "Donate" button to my blog to assist in making this a reality. As for me, I say our dreams are not too far fetched! After all, I breathe the same air as all the greats before us and am warmed by the same sun as they.

I thank you for taking this journey with me and hopefully receiving your very own copy of the published product with a $50 donation. Know that I appreciate any support whether it be verbal or monetary. Play a part and donate to "History..." Oh - and remember...Like the Princess of Zamunda once quoted..."We like the kind that jingles, but we prefer the money that folds."


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Friday, February 5, 2010

Keep Pedaling...

There he was. This little guy standing in the middle of the driveway dressed as a warrior. His helmet decorated with the illusion of fire, his armor shining steel blue in color and tightened around his elbows and arms. He was ready! Oh wait... "Tighten up your chin strap." Ok now he was ready! With this however, it seemed his enemy was just as prepared if not more so. His enemy sat in its own corner displaying its menacing frame and snaring back at him as the young warrior trembled with fear. The armor on his knees knocked almost rhythmically. The beat sounded eerily like Queen's 1980 hit "Another one bites the dust." "Dad, he called out shaken, Do we have to take the training wheels off today? I don't have to learn today, I'm ok - really." It was clear the boy was nerve stricken. Apparently he'd gotten wind of the epic battles his older siblings had with the great two wheeled beast. They had triumphed but not without a battle mark or band aid. These stories, now clearly exaggerated were messing with his psyche...and his stomach. Thinking fast I gave the warrior a pep talk of sorts as he stood on the hot concrete terrain. With his eyes darting constantly and his legs week, what he needed was a dose of courage I thought. "My stomach hurts Daddy" "Keep your wits about you son and take this elixir! It's sure to give you all the energy you need to defeat the beast. It's basically liquid courage - drink up!" I passed him the Chuck E Cheese goblet and he drank boldly from it. When he'd finished he looked different. His knees quieted and he emphatically proclaimed "That's Pepto Bismol Daddy!" I simply proclaimed with a stiff pat on his back, that today...it's the stuff dreams are made out of!

As we made our way down to the asphalt lined battlefield, the suburban warrior continually posed questions to his giggling siblings of how long it would take. My daughter shouted out "Five minutes!" In actuality it had taken her three days, a box of band aids, and two pair of gloves. I remember it like it was yesterday. The child pedaled right into the woods and hit a tree! She sat out the next day. Look, don't judge me - I take full blame! "Lesson one son - "Braking."

I must say people, that was no doubt the hottest day of the year and pushing dead weight in limp armor with a bike up and down the street was exhausting. "Can we take a break?, he said" "Keep pedaling," I replied. "Can you pour water over my head?" "Keep pedaling!" "Will you..." "Keep pedaling!!!" Now about our tenth time up and down the street my own knees were knocking and he could keep his balance when I let go for a second or two. The smile across his face was priceless. The kids snapped pictures and he was on his way. Then he hit "bit the dust!" It seems a quick jerk of the wheel provided him with a taste of the unforgiving terrain. His left knee pad had absorbed much of the enemy blow. I took my time getting there as the beast lay on top of his tangled body and he yelled out. I reached the boy and loosened him from the enemy's "Full Nelson" and "Figure Four" grip. He then looks up at me as if to say...I know - Keep pedaling! Now there you have it friends...That's the stuff dreams are really made of!


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Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Four Letters...

Dear Mr. MacGyver,

I've watched all your episodes on TV and have been amazed at your engineering prowess. Actually that's what started me toward my path in engineering. That time you disarmed a missile with a paperclip was "nothing but the truth!" You're like a one man A-team without a lame torch or a Mohawk. Those guys were idiots and you are awesome! Can you please send me your autograph and the instructions on how to repair a busted brake line while in a moving car?

Sincerely, Your biggest fan!


Dear MacGyver,

I recently wrote you a letter to which I have yet to receive a response. For your reading enjoyment I have attached it with this one. I understand how busy things can get. I would have thought things would have slowed down for you with the advent of Jack Bower. Anyways, this time I need help with my sons science fair project. With it being a recession and all, my only materials consist of those contents within my kitchen cabinet. The hypothesis... "If we follow the instructions in your episode entitled "The Black Corsage," then we will make a better fire extinguisher than currently on the market!"

Sincerely, Grooming the next Generation

Dear Mac,

This is my third letter and I've received no responses. I feel as though you do not care about my son or I. He received an F on his science fair project and you're a fraud! I don't even know who you are anymore or whether you could even power a radio with a cactus. You know I believed in you but I see it's true what my kids said! You are lame! All those times I went to bat for you when Knight Rider came into the discussion! Please send that autograph ASAP as we've run out of toiletries. P.S. You're the reason terrorist exist!

Sinceley, Walker Texas Ranger Fan!


Dear Friends,

Do not let this happen to you! Do not look to fictional characters when in need. I had to learn the hard way and am putting myself out there as an example. Take for instance just yesterday. I nearly bet a friend that I could construct an arcwelder from a car battery and pocket change! I could have lost an eye! Seriously though, take my advice as there is only one guy that can perform miracles and allow for an escape from a burning incinerator. (Even without the use of a fire extinguisher) Only one set of instructions that can give you the guidance and wisdom necessary for a life worth living. He'll never fail and leave you disappointed like that geeky fraud did to me! I know because a great multitude of witnesses stand before you having already succeeded in proving that hypothesis correct. So, if you ever find yourself like me with three children in the back seat simultaneously screaming "Tow truck! -Tow truck!" because your transmission just blew, just take a breath and put away your pocket change. Simply thank God for providing for a miraculous escape and let him change you. Appreciate that escape to which you were totally unbeknownst. This because we never really have any idea what's waiting for us around that corner we never made it to! Now that's "nothing but the Truth!" Hopefully a truth that starts you toward a path to that truth named Christ.

Sincerely, One of the multitude!

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