"I am saving for college, or a good attorney."

February 20, 2015

Notable Stats

Shadiness Index (SI) – The degree by which the action of your child borders on illegal in 50 states. A "1" is a white lie, a "10" offends Darth Vader.
Honest Dishonesty Quotient (HDQ) – The ratio between the fact that you want your child to tell you the truth and your desire to not know that your child “borrowed” your wedding ring to pay for a video game.

I love being a parent. I wouldn’t trade it for the world, nor would I trade the person I have the blessing of co-parenting with, but we have to accept that our children are born criminals.

Yes, I wrote that. Think about it. At young ages they bite people, they scratch, they push siblings down the stairs, they take what is not rightfully theirs, they trespass, they ignore authority, they even try and drive your car at age 4. Since I did that numerous times at 3, I know grand theft when I hear it. (besides the property damage I did on both occasions)

But we expect it all to change when they become aware of responsibility and risk. We expect them to grow up and know what they do, and most times this is the case, but it is a slow understanding and while they learn, the crime potential only becomes more ominous.

Case in point, during a vacation, we were talking about allowances and money with our son. The usual talk about chores and work, contributing to help the family and understanding value. He seemed to understand the idea that some work earns money and money allows you to buy things, like Lego sets and things from the app store. Since he turns everything into a game and is a fierce competitor, not only does he like the idea, he wants to win it (Whatever winning an idea means… but to him, it makes perfect sense).

So he decides one day to work on what we thought was an “art project.” He grabs a number of colors from his marker bin and gets to work. Orange, yellow, red, a rainbow of beauty. At the end result, we expected a work of art since he is prolific, but on this day we realized he was actually printing money.

Now I doubt the Feds would take issue with his rainbow currency even though his intent was to make a replica of what apparently is completely out of circulation, an $80 bill. That is right, an 80 dollar bill. Given we were in Puerto Rico and I am highly confident that Puerto Rico uses the US dollar, I didn’t think they were granted an exemption to use $80 bills, but maybe I should check out Commonwealth law.
However, counterfeiting was not the real issue. It was his desire to exchange his $80 bill for real money. That was the concern. (I will have to look up what crime that could be – exchanging false goods?) He drafted up a jolly rancher $80 to exchange for REAL money. Now I wasn’t clear if he thought we were paying for his art and therefore buying it to frame for some reason, or if he thought he was somehow leader of Cloud Cuckoo Land and as prime minister he is declaring an exchange rate of 4 to 1 US. 
As his father, I also get concerned that he theoretically is running a country that is weak against the dollar and that his country’s currency is not backed by anything unless you count cavities or dirty laundry as “goods.”
I also realized that his sole export is money. Probably not a good business model.
After we called him out on trying to earn money by selling fake money, he eventually got the message that this venture was dead in the water. 
Hopefully that realization will take him another step closer to earning money the good-ole-fashioned way, working hard, being honest, and these days, posting your efforts on Facebook. 
A list of crimes my kids (and dare I say, all kids) committed between the ages of 0 and 18 months (not exhaustive)
  • Open Lewdness
  • Defiant Trespassing
  • Attempted Murder
  • Assault
  • Theft
  • Disturbing the Peace
  • Indecent Exposure
  • Impersonating a Government Official
  • Extortion (through tears)
  • Littering
  • Destruction of Property
  • Jaywalking
  • Rioting
  • Smuggling
  • Vampirism
  • Treason
  • Sedition 
And now, apparently, counterfeiting. 
- Doug Glanville
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