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Looking for financial advice, life coaching or a new mantra? Good luck finding it elsewhere. Drinks Before Dinner is the one-stop shopper’s site for small talk. If you're a fiction reader, please visit my author website at www.bwknister.com



Monday, March 8, 2010

GRUMPY MONDAY: SIGNAGE AND SELF-ESTEEM

--I saw a “Baby On Board” sign today.
--What was notable about that?
--I don’t know. Nothing, really. I used to see them all the time, but not lately.
--Well, no, that’s true. I haven’t seen them, either.
--Maybe people are revisiting the baby-on-board mystique.
--Is that what it is?
--You tell me, you’re the mom. I assume way back when you had your own babies on board. Before I came on board.
--I most certainly did, but signs didn’t figure.
--Old signs could be a green thing. An effect of the recycling movement. It’s strange, don’t you think? This need to declare every allegiance? Every loyalty? I mean, who the hell doesn’t support Our Troops? It’s a challenge, isn’t it? “I demand you put a ribbon decal on your car, because if you don’t, that means you don’t support Our Troops.”
--I suppose it’s harmless.
--What that did was leverage people who hated George Bush and opposed his war to support them both.
--By creating social pressure to put a yellow ribbon on their cars.
--Cars, boats. Golf carts, shopping carts.
-- I thought of getting a pink ribbon, for breast cancer.
--Whatever you want, but please, no bumper sticker that says “I love my dog.”
--Why not? I do love my dog.
--I love my dog, I love my truck. All the messages say the same thing. “I’m not really confident about my identity, but I know I admire wolves.” Am I supposed to slow down, knowing the car ahead of me includes a baby?
--I don’t think that’s it.
--Cancel my plan to rear-end someone’s Buick?
--People are proud of their babies, that’s all. The way they’re proud of their student-of-the-month at Blodgett Middle School.
--These are the same people who want total strangers to know they dream in chocolate and brake for unicorns.
--Come on, honey, lighten up.
--It all has to do with the self-esteem movement.
--Here we go. How so?
--Reproduction is a serious claim to fame for most people.
--Ahh. I think I see where this is going. “I just want you to know I have a baby in the car with me, my own actual infant, not some rent-a-baby, so there!”
--Exactly.
--Do you remember the certificates given out at the grandkids’school? You called it the No Child Left Behind at The Academy Awards Ceremony.
--He didn’t get a trophy, but I remember ______’s citation was printed in Old English lettering. It acknowledged him for being cheerful.
--It’s no longer acceptable to hand out prizes to only the best students.
--That’s because we’re all unique and special.
--There’s nothing wrong with it, is there? Cheerfulness matters.
--I didn’t say it didn’t.
--No, but you’re being sarcastic.
--I’m sorry. Forty-one percent of U.S. college grads test as “proficient” in the use of their native tongue. Do you know what you need to be able to do in order to test as proficient? You need to be able to understand a newspaper editorial, or read the labels on prescription drugs.
--These are college seniors, not high school grads?
--Forty-one percent.
--Not good.
--Don’t worry, it’s OK. Every one of them feels good about himself. Or herself.

5 comments:

  1. We have no bumper stickers on our cars...we share your reasoning on them. But I recently accepted a humorous challenge to create the "ultimate bumper sticker" on a friend's blog. My entry: I don't care about your kid, your politics, your religion, or your dog. I care about your driving skills.

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  2. Nance,
    Your bumper sticker offers excellent content, but is a dangerous message. At least in our area, which is full of people on whom time has leaned heavily. So heavily in fact that many of them while driving are not visible through the back window. Those in this group peer through spokes in the steering wheel, floaters dancing in their optic fluid,flitting in and out of the hole produced in the field of vision by macular degeneration. Such people will never read to the crux of your message before the airbag deploys.

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  3. Thank you for visiting me.

    Thank me for visiting you.

    I've never understood the fear of hurting feelings when it has to do with proficiency. Some achieve quickly and deserve reward, others may need time and help. But certainly one shouldn't be rewarded for not achieving the goal. This is a disastrous lesson for our kids.

    Enjoyed this.

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  4. Hello Jerry.
    I do thank you for visiting DBD. In my view,there's a "gotcha!" aspect to political correctness that has little or nothing to do with the declared intent of making people more sensitive to others. It's just one-upsmanship in a game where the rules are in a constant state of rolling realignment. You might enjoy the DBD post for Feb.2, "Retardation Nation," having to do with Rahm Emanual being pilloried for using what I suppose will now be known as the R word.

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  5. Love the post AND your response to Nance. I'm far enough away from your characterization of the drivers in your area to laugh, but close enough to understand all too well. Thanks for hitting a nerve with wit.

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