I tucked my boys in last night — one is big, another is bigger and one is still pretty small. The little one sleeps, as there is a big gym party and spring football for him on Friday. The big ones do their homework, listen to music, text, watch sports center, and study for tests until midnight. Is this new traditional and “dynamic” education that we pay for really going to yield the ripe fruit that they’ll need to nourish them through a complex life of joy and pain, success and failure, victory and defeat? Is the process of the new harder education giving them the linear skills that are going to translate into understanding? Is it also teaching them that hard work and discipline makes a parent proud and a teacher pleased? And is that even a variable in a successful education? Does the end justify the means or are the un-intended consequences of this grind at 12 and 14 something to be worried about? Is a kid even a kid anymore at 12? Will it teach them grit and how to solve the problems of life? I wonder…and I am certain that I can’t see all that is to be for them… and I know that their lives will be like nothing like the life I imagine for them a”s making predictions is hard to do especially when it involves the future” (Mark Twain). I believe that their lives can be better for what parent doesn’t fundamentally believe this? But will it be, or will it be worse, or will it just be different? I am not the sentimental old fool longing for the good old days…because for me — these three little boys most certainly represent my good old days. I watched a sports doc tonight and saw newspaper clippings from the 80s….they now look like the old newspaper clippings from the 20s that I used to stare at when I was young with my dad. Tonight’s 30-30 was the story of the Detroit Pistons and the “golden age” of basketball. Bird, Magic and Michael were all at their individual athletic peaks — draining 3’s and jamming dunks– all set up on grainy tv clips that reminded me of the vhs tapes found in a college apartment or frat house that were always viewed alone. Time is a trick. I tell them “boys don’t stay up to late… oh and I also prepped the turkey bacon egg burritos for the morning….and I love you” ….they shake their heads at the old man, and mumble an “I love you back” and they go back to their books, their music, their phones, their thoughts of tomorrow. I walk back to my room in my pajamas that they call “the whites” …and there is another night. They have all the time in the world now….