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5.09.2011

Would it better to have obsessive kids or lazy kids?

It looks like Kit is taking an interest in gardening. He's digging up weeds and planting carrots and radishes with Grammo and brought home sunflowers from school. A couple of nights ago he spent a solid hour pulling up some dead shrubs and has been watering every night. I know it's just a start but a Grampy can dream.

It's been really tough getting either of the boys to take an interest in anything that requires both some effort and working alone. Come to think of it, Kit has been spending some serious time drawing pictures without constantly needing attention. This is great and I'd love to have it spill over to Tio. I've tried a bunch of different outlets and unless it's video games, he doesn't want to touch it. Even practicing baseball alone is a real chore for him.

It is amazing what a person will spark to when the inspiration hits them. It can happen at any age but once it happens there's no stopping them. I remember being blown over by the flute and playing for 3 to 6 hours a day through my teen years. Right now, I'm helping a 14 year old girl write her first novel. I met her a couple of years ago during a creative writing course I taught and even at 12 she was a dynamo with words and description. She's wanted to be a novelist since she was 9 and she'll make it.

Not that I think it's necessary to have a passion that drives you but it doesn't hurt. It helps you learn to focus, to train and to believe in yourself. Tio feels that way about baseball but only up to a point. He plays a great game, loves it, and attends all the practices. He just doesn't go the extra mile by himself.

I remember at age 8 I had my dad mimeograph 50 maps of Australia so I could mark them all with topography, plant and animal and climate and all the attending geography. That was way over the top. I wonder if there is a sweet spot somewhere between mild interest and unhealthy obsession?