April's Real Blog

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Paper conservation

Miked stopped by this blog last nite 2 share sum more of what happed recently when he was lookin' @ foto albums w/Merrie:

Formerly little sis. Sometimes it is difficult to get the ideas of conservation across to the very young. Mom does her bit with putting her potato peelings in her Compost Queen, recycling, low energy light bulbs and putting up "This House Saves Water" signs. Dad does his part by going to landfills and complaining about what people throw away. For some reason, these sterling examples from mom and dad just do not sink in with the younger generation.

Just the other day, as I sat my daughter in my lap and we looked at mom's old photographs albums and I was trying to explain to my daughter how incredibly poor I was at measuring things, especially the height of dogs when I was little, my daughter said to me, "You have lots of pictures of Robin an' me, right?" I could tell my daughter had been around her Auntie April quite a bit with the tell-tale sign of her unpronounced final "d" in "an'". However, I opted not to correct her pronunciation, even though I was sorely tempted to do so. Instead I decided to inspire my daughter with the knowledge that her father was much better about paper conservation in this modern age. I said, "Yes, but most of them are stored on discs." I said "most" because, as you know, there was that roll of film Deanna and I had early on in our marriage, which was accidentally put on regular photo paper instead of on disc. Deanna wanted to try putting our photos on a different medium but decided to let the old medium leave her system before going to the new medium, and we ended up with some photos on paper. Since then, the only time we put photos on paper was planned, for Christmas presents and things like that.

My daughter seemed to be surprised to learn about her father's paper conservation efforts and she said, "No books like this, daddy?" I decided to go for the full explanation to her, and really for any person (like my son) who might be looking in on my life and might be completely confused by the idea of digital storage of pictures. As I was explaining it to my daughter and my son, I had this feeling that I was explaining this concept to a whole generation of mentally feeble people, who used examples from my life to learn about their world. I said, "We don't need photograph albums any more, Meredith. Technology now allows us to put all this paper into tiny computer files, which we can access easily by clicking a few keys."

My daughter retorted in the way only the very young and paper conservationally ignorant can. She said, "Well, I like photographs 'cause you can pick them up an' hold them." I could tell it was going to take awhile to teach my daughter about conservation, just as it was going to take awhile to get her to stop saying "an'". So, I gave her a "Right", as if to say, "I'm tired of this argument and we will get back to it later, when you are older and wiser."

Just at that moment, my son made a motion either that he wanted to be picked up, or that he was going to try to strangle me to death. To prevent possible murder attempts, I picked him up and realized (in a thought balloon and not using the word "an'", I will have you know) just like photographs, I can pick up and hold my children. Of course the advantage to photographs is that they are not going to get so big you can't pick them up and hold them anymore; and that photographs don't sit in your lap looking at photographs until they get tired, close their eyes and fall asleep; and that photographs won't cry when you try to pick them up and move them to more comfortable positions because your arms are getting numb from holding them so long.

It's going to take awhile to teach my kids about conservation.

Michael Patterson
Mike, this all reminds me of when I was eight, and U were abt 2 gradu8 from uni. U and Weed had just learned that U were up 4 an award 4 an article U'd worked on 2gether abt that Irish fam the O'Connors in Quebec, and also that Portrait mag wanted 2 send U both 2 Ireland 2 interview and photograph more fam members 2 expand the article in2 a book. I remember that when U got this news, U wrote abt it in an e-mail 2 the 'rents and Liz, so this of course meant that Mom didn't find out until Liz read her own e-mail and told Mom. And Mom had a giant hissy fit that U shared the news in e-mail instead of in a fone call. She was all, "I want a fone call! U pick up a fone, U dial a number, U talk, what's so hard abt that!" And Liz kinda glared @ her, until it occurred 2 Mom 2 call U herself. And when she did, she was all congratul8ey, but she also managed 2 have U apologizing by the end of the convo, 4 not calling. And the crazy thing is that Mom is STILL like this, eight years l8er. And what MOST of us wanna know is what is so hard about sitting down @ yr 'puter and checking yr friggin' e-mail?!?!? Gah, I so hope Merrie and Robin don't grow up 2 B Luddites, like Mom.

And speaking of how they grow up, if U wanna know how they got the habit of using "an'," U mite wanna look closer 2 how--like @ yrself, eh?


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  • At 7:28 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    mom's all xxcited cuz liz phoned her an' sed that she (liz), anthony, and fran├žoise had a special "day at the park" date today.

    mom's totally humming "here comes the bride."



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