I worked from home today.
The highlight of the day was not the two-hour conference call I listened in on. It was getting my edit schedule request sent out to all of the writers for whom I edit.
I walked again for an hour around my neighborhood, this time listening to this This American Life episode:
|Episode: How to Talk to Kids|
Host Ira Glass asks fifth-grade kids to explain what adults do wrong when talking to children. (5 minutes)
|Act One. So, Kids: A Priest, a Rabbi, and a Hooker Walk into a Bar...|
Sean O'Connor and Nick Maritato are professional comedians, and their job usually involves saying things that kids aren't supposed to hear. But last summer they got booked on a tour of kids' summer camps. TAL producer Jane Feltes tells us what happened. (18 minutes)
Song: "Kids Don't Follow," The Replacements
|Act Two. Age of Consent.|
Ira talks to the teen editors of Sex, Etc., a national magazine for teenagers, about the mistakes parents make when talking—or not talking—to their kids about sex.
Sex, Etc. is published by Answer, a sex education organization based at Rutgers University. (8 minutes)
Then, the story of what happened when one anonymous mother learned that her daughter was having sex. All the names in this essay have been changed, and it's read on the air by TAL senior producer Julie Snyder. (11 minutes)
Song: "Trust Your Child," Patrizia & Jimmy
|Act Three. Use Your Words.|
TAL contributor Dan Savage makes the case for yelling at children. He also reflects on how his views on how to talk to kids have changed over the years.
Dan is the host of the "Savage Love" Podcast. (10 minutes)
Song: "Teach Me Tonight," Stevie Wonder with Levi Stubbs
The best part of this podcast to me was the first five minutes—listening to these effervescent kids say what's goofy about what adults say to them, and then telling what adults should say to them.
This one totally adorable little girl (I think it's a girl) says, "Um, 'How was school?' is, like, the, um, typical adult question. So you have to answer it like 6,000 times a year. So, like, if they, um, say like, 'How is school,' you kind of know they like have nothing else to say or they don't know what to say. "
My bet is that not one of you could listen to the first five minutes (the prologue) of this episode and not smile. Go ahead. Listen. And smile. (At the link, click on "Full Episode"—just under the picture—and just listen to the first five minutes.)
I met Joe at Helios, where he introduced me to his new laptop and returned the one I had loaned him until his new one arrived today.
Since that's the one of my three laptops that has my iTunes library on it, I updated my podcast subscriptions, picking up about 80 new podcasts, and deleting the bunch I've listened to over the last three weeks or so.
Back home, I worked on a (too hard!) crossword puzzle for a while, and then read a little before drifting off into la-la land.