A Philosophical Bum

Published April 3, 2012 by Sandee


I want my sister’s sons, my nephews, to be scientists.  Who the fuck am I to determine this?  A neurotic, self-centered, overbearing relative, passing down baggage.  This is a reflection of my ego.  Sure, it would benefit them to have these careers perhaps, but it would primarily benefit me.  I’d bloat up and tell eeeeevverybody how brilliant MY nephews are, and it would make me feel like I was the success – I could hide my insecurities behind it.  Listen, I could have been a scientist, but I chose to — well…we won’t go there…

But really I’m not that bad.  I only want them to have some advantages.  I am also full of crap as I claim not to have any bourgeoisie aspirations.  This idea for vocations for my nephews is warped – it’s my idea of what an advantage for them would be.   I could’ve had my own kids, but didn’t want any.  I didn’t want to create any more lost souls on the planet besides, I didn’t have faith in my gene pool.  Yeah, I said it!

So, I want the four year old to be a neurosurgeon, and his little one year old brother to be an astrophysicist.  Is this over-the-top or what?  Trystan is four, and Brandon is one in May.  When Trystan was two, I said, “Tell mama you’re going to be a neurosurgeon.”  He tightened up and said excitedly, “I like Vicks!”  He’d had a cold and his parents had been slathering him in it for the past few nights.  My sister says, laughing, messing with me, “He’s going to be a rapper, a break dancer.  Tell her.  Right, T?”  It could happen but I doubt it.  She and her husband are career-oriented people – but who knows.  Yes, and I know rapping and break dancing are careers too — but anyway — I persisted with my idea as T’s language skills developed — at the age of three, he’d acquired the subtlety of inflection.  “Hey Trystan, tell mama you’re going to be a neurosurgeon,” I say.  “Oo-kaaaay….I’m gon-na be, a, neurosurgeon,” he says tiredly, just to placate old aunt Sandee.  He then turned his back and loaded his dump truck up with cars.

The one year old Brandon doesn’t really speak now, but I read somewhere that they understand what you say to them.  They store it in their brains and can put it together later on.  I’ll try that theory.  I’ll go on ahead and “suggest” to Brandon that he is going to be an astrophysicist.

“I don’t really care what they are as long as they’re happy,” Debbie, my sister says.  Yeah, right, all parents say that tired-ass shit… She says that if Trystan was a bum living in the woods she would be fine with it as long as he had a philosophy for being there.  “He could be a philosophical bum,” she says.  It would make her proud that he was strong enough to reject the mainstream in support of his principles, she said.  A career can’t determine their success, she continued.  And I thought I was the deep one!


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