Iíve been dissed. Iíve been assigned an oppressive label by the evil forces of materialism. I shall foreveróor at least until the end of baseball seasonóbe defined as a second class citizen in the eyes of at least one of the Momís on Carterís baseball team.
Oddly enough, I donít feel all that bad about it.
Hereís the story: Yesterday was Carterís first baseball practice. I was walking toward the parking lot when I noticed that one of the Moms was eye-balling me. My first thought was, ďShe thinks Iím hot.Ē Considering that most soccer moms react this way to my dashing good looks, suave personality, and obvious virile masculinity, it is a natural reaction on my part.
However, there was a look in her eye that didnít say, ďwhy canít my husband be more like him.Ē The look said, ďwho let scum like that in here with all us good people?Ē I puzzled over this look before realizing that I was standing at the trunk of my only slightly beat up 2000 Chevy Cavalier and she was standing at her 2007 2007 Lexus RX 350. Iím rolling through this exclusive, gated community in my approximately $1000 vehicle and sheís in her ultra-luxury SUV at approximately 50 times the price of mine,.
Now forget for a moment that she was probably correct in her assessment of me as scum. The point here is that she was apparently judging me based on the appearance of my car.
Well, we do live in Oklahomaís wealthiest suburb so I supposed some class conscious materialism is par for this environ. Furthermore, I am not without my prejudices. When I see the Larry-The-Cable-Guy look-alike with his wife, Bovina, and there coterie of filthy children and toothless, snuff dipping, friends, relatives, and hangers on out for a big night at the Super Wal-mart, I make certain assumptions about them none of which, Iím ashamed to admit, are particularly open minded or kind.
The thing is, Iím just not that materialistic. I could afford a nicer car but this one is: 1. Paid for; 2. fuel efficient; 3. small enough to park anywhere 4; old and beat up enough that I donít care if the kids do any of the hideous things they do regardless of how much I try to keep them from doing them. I wouldnít mind a car that was quieter, smoother driving and, most of all, had a better stereo. However, Iím fine and really donít mind that some stranger turned their nose up at me based on my car.
In fact, I kinda like it. My strategy throughout life has been to exceed peopleís low expectations of me. If people expect nothing of you, they are impressed by everything. Right?
To get to the point here, I hope I can impart on my children a sense of value that transcends material things. How can this be done? I donít know. What Jill and I try to do, however, is entourage generosity, loyalty, forgiveness, and a realization that we have an amazingly blessed life that isnít shared by most of the world. They get it often enough that I know theyíll get at least part of this lesson.
Speaking of amazing blessingsÖWe got the results of Carter, Sara, and Zaneís IQ tests yesterday. They all scored within a point or less of each other and all on the far right side of the statistical curve. Iím not surprised by this. They frequently amaze me and I try to figure out which side of the family this comes from. Actually, our family is full of really smart people so it shouldnít be any surprise. It is only because I tend to view myself as subordinate to most of the world while at the same time understanding that this assessment is undeserved. I suppose I like, most of all, to exceed my own low expectations of myself.
When I think of all the things that could have gone wrong with any of our four children and all the ways they have been imbued by the creator with an abundance of natural resources, I have to pause to give thanks. It is a selfish prayer, however, I give thanks because Iíve got enough stress in my life with triplets +1 without having to deal with anything moreÖ..EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.