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Electronic obsession

Written by: Suzanna Palmer August 22 2012 Dear Jacob, I have a bone to pick with you, and since it’s about your infatuation with all-things-electronic, I figured that this would be the best way to get my message across. For the last few months, you and I have been battling over every energy-powered item in...

Written by: Suzanna Palmer

Dear Jacob,

I have a bone to pick with you, and since it’s about your infatuation with all-things-electronic, I figured that this would be the best way to get my message across.

For the last few months, you and I have been battling over every energy-powered item in the house, and I think it’s about time we got some things straight. If you’re going to be the next Thomas Edison or Steve Jobs, then I am one hundred percent behind your electronic obsession. If click-click-clicking every button in a 25-foot radius is going to get you ahead in the field of electrical engineering or some other lucrative career someday, then more power (badum-ching!) to you.

However, if you’re just trying to make mommy’s life difficult, then I would appreciate you shifting your attention to the billions of age-appropriate playthings tucked into every nook and cranny of the house. Your obsession with our household gadgets is getting pretty pricey.

At first, it was the stereo system in the living room. I would turn on something I liked, and you would quickly let your disapproval be known, changing the station, turning down the volume, or ejecting the CD. Then, when we failed to reach a compromise, you simply broke off one of the essential buttons, making it inoperable. Baby: 1; Momma: 0.

The next battle was over my phone. Anytime I took it out of my pocket to make work calls, call daddy at work or talk to your Gramsie, you would reach for it, crying and sputtering so loudly that I couldn’t hear anything on the other end of the line. Don’t act like you don’t remember. Sometimes, in a moment of motherly weakness, I would tire of the noise and give in, letting you gleefully press the buttons and call whoknowswhere in celebration of your triumph. Baby: 2; Momma: 0.

But then, you made a mistake and crossed the line. I didn’t mind you calling random strangers or running down my battery by pressing keys, but when you crawled to the toilet and dropped my phone into the water last week, well, that was the last straw. You have been since cut off from the world of cell phone communication, and you’ll be lucky if I let you back in before you’re 21. Baby: 3; Momma: 3. (You get one point for your little stunt, and I get three points for imposing a ban—and because I said so.)

Now, our latest battle is over the grand-daddy of them all: my new Mac. If it hadn’t been obnoxiously expensive and didn’t threaten my job security, I might not mind you using the screen for a chew toy, a seat and a drum. Of course, if it wasn’t worth a thousand dollars and wasn’t essential for keeping me gainfully employed, you probably wouldn’t want to use it for those things anyway. (Case in point: I don’t see you trying to destroy the ice cream maker, crock pot, or panini press.)

I thought that letting you play with not one but two of my old laptops would keep you entertained and away from mommy’s computer, but alas, it wasn’t so.

Then, I thought that buying you your very own handy-dandy Bob the Builder laptop would keep you away from the real thing. Instead, you laughed at my feeble attempt to refocus you. Now, it seems we have a standoff.

Fortunately, I’m a lot bigger than you are, and will be for at least the next 12 years or so. So, until then, I’m going to declare this one a point for mommy. Maybe someday when you’re a wealthy electrical engineer, we can revisit the score. But only if you buy me a new stereo and phone first.

Love,

Your Mom

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