Thursday, January 24, 2008

Campaign Songs for Everyone

The recent discussion about the 2008 presidential candidates' selections for campaign songs makes me wonder if each of us might benefit from selecting a campaign song, so to speak, for our own lives: a song that would reflect our vision and speak to our values. It would be interesting to see if song choices divide out by generations. Could I find a title from the 21st century, or would I stick to the classic oldies? Would my kids go back to the Beatles or find a better fit with a song from a current artist? This discussion has the makings for a good party game.

And what if, like some candidates, we changed songs as our life circumstances changed? Would we be considered fickle or shallow for giving up on the values by which we hoped to be defined? Or even more interesting, would we be considered fickle or shallow for selecting new songs that reflect what others want us to be?

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Is There an Age Limit for Parental Imprinting?

Recently my daughter-in-law called to tell me our eight week old grandson had begun sleeping through the night. She added that her pediatrician indicated there is some speculation that infants adopt the sleep habits of their parents. My son, daughter-in-law and their older son all go to bed early and sleep well, so it makes sense that the new little guy will do the same. After all, what else is there to do when everyone else is in bed and the house is quiet?

The concept of imprinting is interesting. My own writing career has now expanded to include both sons in overlapping projects. Is it possible there is no age limit on parental imprinting? That's an unsettling thought. Or even worse, do imprinted traits lie dormant until some triggering event calls them out in one big family wave?