The rather annoying thing about having me as a mother:
Flora: Mom? I made my bed yesterday.
Flora: And what?
Jane: Is that the whole story? Did you find something, break something, think something, learn something?
Flora: No. That’s it. I made my bed.
Jane: That totally doesn’t work as story.
Flora: Does everything I tell you have to have a plot or a climax? And character development?
What? I’m busy. And I like to be entertained.
The kinda awesome thing about having me as a mother:
My 10 year-old can define plot or climax. And character development.
So can the five-year-old.
The really annoying thing about having me as a mother:
Flora: Ok, let me do this again. Mom? I made my bed yesterday.
Jane: I’m waiting…
Flora: Did you know that studies show that people who make their beds are happier than people who don’t make their beds?
Jane: What studies?
Flora: You know. Studies.
Jane: Where did you hear about these studies?
Jane: Did you know that most people who say “studies show” or “research says” are just making shit up? Whenever someone says, “Studies show” without referencing the specific study, what they’re actually saying, “I read this article on the Internet once and I’m now passing it on to you as proven truth, assuming you’re just as lazy as I am and will not track this information to its source.”
Flora: Does everything I tell you have to be supported by evidence?
Jane: Yes. Except when we’re talking about unicorns. Where are you going?
Flora: I’m going to Google the fucking bed-making study.
The really awesome thing about having me as a mother is that I’m going to loom over her shoulder as she scrolls and tell her: “Not a real source. Not real science. This is a blog—this is a blog post, and that is not research. Yes, this looks like a journal article, but what does it say, right here? See? ‘Research shows…’ What research? Yeah, this one’s not worth anything either. Keep on going… OK, now that one’s better, but what institution is he professor at, exactly? Let’s check that out… ”
My kids are going to know that typing search terms into Google is not research.
Research shows that children whose parents take the time to explain this sort of thing to them make better researchers. ;P
PS My original headline was “Research shows people who make their beds in the morning don’t understand climax is necessary to good story” but apparently it had subtext.