Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Immodest Mouse


If you just tuned in, those are my sons. They're homeschooled.

It's very important that the viewer understand that I'm their music teacher, but I had absofarginlutely  nothing to do with the production of this video. I did not teach them any part of this song. I was not present when it was chosen, or arranged, or overdubbed, or mixed, or compiled, or uploaded. They did it all themselves yesterday afternoon. I saw it in the same manner that you did -- finished product. I'm told that the parts they played together were done in one take.

The older one is seventeen. I have been harsh with him in the past. Brusque. Demanding. He is very even-tempered, or more likely, has learned to project even-temperament, which is better and the same thing at the same time. I can't remember the last time I raised my voice to him, or that he required any form of external discipline from me. The little one is only nine, and could wear out a stone with his relentless nature, but you can never be angry with him, because he seems incapable of malice of any kind.

If I had one wish, I know what it would be. I'm not a beauty pageant contestant, so whirled peas isn't on my list, never mind near the top of it. Let the world sort out its own problems; I've got my own. Here's my one wish: I wish I'd never raised my voice, even once, to those little children, or their mother. There had to be a better way.

I can still die a happy, if defective, man, though. If the approach was not perfect, you can at least see perfection from the top floor window of our house.

(Update: Thanks to Kathleen from CT for your continuing generosity! And many thanks go out to jolie Julie, too!)

(Higher-Update: Melissa K's continuing generosity is marvelous. Many thanks!)

(Still Further Update: Thanks, Lorraine; you're a peach)

19 comments:

Expat(ish) said...

Why do you think that raising your voice was not part of the process that produced what you have? Gnu knows that I'm the product of all sorts of things my parents did that I would never do. I'm sure I'm doing the same.

I had a dad want to talk to me about how his kid could be more like mine - I have three very different but notably great kids - and all I could say is: I got nothing.

Really, it's like figuring out global warming or hurricanes - the project to understand the causality is too difficult.

I am just enjoying mine while I have them.

-XC

Ruth Anne Adams said...

Any self-recriminations belong in the Confessional.

You are a modern-day St. Joseph in my view.

Leslie said...

In love.

Hank said...

Sipp - the strides your boys have made musically is simply amazing. I have enjoyed watching this progression. As for fatherhood - we are not and will never be perfect. My wife and I had ideals about raising our children - ideals very different from our own parents. We missed the mark more than I care to admit, but children, those resilient creatures, have continued to surprise us in wonderful ways. Being a father defines me and I am so very proud of my children.

You and your wife have done a tremendous job - enjoy the moments as they float by.

dadofhomeschoolers said...

I'm certainly enjoying my teenagers more than I was told I would, especially now that the older one is no longer a teenager.

I like how the drummer has all the emotion of a metronome, while keeping the time of one.
DoHS

julie said...

Yes, what everyone else said, especially Hank.

And re. the little one, I love how at the end he pulls his glasses down to smile, so that you can only tell by the expression in his eyes, and when the glasses go back up he is stony again.

Well played, gentlemen.

Thud said...

I know what you mean, it hurts but needs must.

Joan of Argghh! said...

As parents we're merely imperfect tools in the hand of perfect God. But it is so sweet when we can admit our shortcomings in our parental care and feeding of such amazing creatures, and be doubly blessed to see who they become in spite of us.

Bilejones said...

Well Mr Sippican, My income has taken a huge and unexpected hit.
I expect it to revive within six months.
I'll buy the dwarfish son a new cymbal then.
Remind me, if you can't find me, the revival never happened.

Anonymous said...

Cancer...and my name is Larry...

Ruth Anne Adams said...

If the spare is a Metro-Gnome, shouldn't he have a hat that depicts such?

And also, isn't Rumford more rural? A Rural-Gnome.

It's fun to see how all the upgrades make the music experience even better.

Sam L. said...

Well, regardless, ya done good wit' da boyz. Surprised, I am, to hear the Heir's 17. Haven't been hearing the solid adult voice, so was thinking 14-15. Maybe my ears don't work so good no more. On t'other hand, they do keep sounding better to me. So there's that.

Nice smile hide by the Spare at the end!

vanderleun said...

You and your wife.... win.

SippicanCottage said...

Hi Expat- Thanks for reading and commenting.

I am of the opinion that I'm probably a lousy father. But I vociferously aver that I am a father, which is kind of a pass/fail title. Just a passing grade will suit me just fine.

Ruth Anne! I am a tekton, but if I'm a saint, it's a Bernard.

"Metro-gnome" is awesome. I hereby pledge to call him that forevermore. And don't be fooled by Rumford's bucolic nature. We're the county seat! The metrop! We have a Dunkin' Donuts and everything!

Leslie- It's the hat.

Hi Hank- Many thanks.

Dad of H- I, like you, have no experience with the rotten teenage thing. I like mine fine.

The little one is so active he's spastic half the time, but sit him behind the drums and he's all business. I'm at a loss to explain it.

Hi Julie- He has his mother's laughing eyes.

Thud has beautiful children! I've seen pitchas.

Hi Joan- Thanks for reading and commenting.

I figure everyone will figure that I'm the man behind the curtain at all times, and I tried to stress that the kids really are doing it themselves. It's a good thing they don't need perfect parents, because they like living with us.

Bilejones- I hope that you are OK.

Hi Sam- He has his father's baby face, but some of the timbre of his voice you're picking up is just that the pop songs he picks are in very high registers. My wife and I refer to him as "Barry White" when we hear him (through the floor) when he's talking to his friends on Skype.

Vanderleun- Thanks for linking to the boys' vid. I'm just their dad, but you have cred.

twolaneflash said...

Thank you for caring enough to homeschool your sons. The fruits of your labors are evident. The video was amazing. You should worship at their mother's feet.

TmjUtah said...

Bravo, those men.

All of them, on camera and off.

Good job.

dadofhomeschoolers said...

I've seen the busy until he gets behind whatever thing before. I used to work with a fella who had a nervous tic and tourettes, until he sat behind a keyboard. Anything from a toy piano to a pipe organ, it all went away, and you were left agape at the music coming out.

Sam L. said...

Speaking of Barry White, Mr. Sippi, I saw a flyer for a product called Biogra. The sales line was "When Barry White and Candlelight don't work any more."

Thud said...

Leaps and bounds, just how good are they!