Friday, June 28, 2013

An Interesting Life

I've led an interesting life. Sometimes it was just a bit more interesting than I wanted it to be, and there were times my life bordered on fulfilling the famous Chinese curse "May you live in interesting times." Surprises are good, but let's not overdo it. In any event, most of my life has been enjoyable aside from the extra interesting parts.

One of the bits of sage advice I laid on my sons was that they should live interesting lives too. I meant this in the best way (see above) because I didn't want them to end up being old and bitter because they never did anything risky or fun. Part of my parenting plan was to encourage my boys to go away for school because I knew staying home with me wouldn't be very interesting for any of us.

Each took his own path.

The eldest wanted to be Ivy League andthanks to being interesting from an early age and having waded into the internet when it was just a pool called the world wide webhe opted to go to Cornell, got advanced degrees in engineering and business, and now his job is so interesting I cannot adequately describe it to my friends. It has to do with clouds. Everyone who buys things with a cell phone uses it. Or something like that. He and his wife are about to head off to Italy, which is high on the list of interesting places.

My middle son had his heart closer to home and went to the University of Wisconsin in Madison, where he became a Badger and chased tornadoes across the lower Midwest. He also became a sports fan, something his brothers never truly did. He's settled in Wisconsin, married, and has a child, which is right up there on the scale of interesting things. And I understand it! Every year, he and his wife and friends take part in the world largest trivia contest, held in Stevens Point. To paraphrase Vizzini: Plato? Aristotle? Socrates? ... Morons.

My youngest, though, seems to embrace every interesting thing that crosses his path. He went to Ringling School of the Arts, where he made interesting friends, and now he does interesting work for a news organization. I'd never be able to keep up with his life if it were not for Facebook, Instagram, and any other social network site I can navigate well enough to stalk him. I have to do this, you see. He's too busy leading an interesting life to call his mother. I never know if he'll be at the World Beard and Mustache Championship in Alaska, or the World Wife Carrying Championship in Finland. He's rumored to live in Atlanta, and on any given week he will run around the city twice, eat a strange new food, catch a performance by some hot new band (or perform himselfhe's a drummer), have ringside seats at a roller derby, or hold an outdoor movie night in his backyard that half the cool crowd in the city will attend. He knows people I've heard of, which I think is interesting, though he probably considers it ordinary.

All three boys consider me interesting because I write fiction and, not inconsequentially, because I gave birth to them. They're still trying to figure out how that quite happened but it's a fait accompli. Here I am. There they are. And to this day they are the three most interesting things I ever did.


  1. Oh, God, Tali, you had me grinning from one ear to another. What a wonderful description of your sons!

    1. I guess all mothers think their kids are great. :) Thanks!