Many Are Cold, but Few Are Frozen

David Lawrence's personal blog

I'm a Bad Daddy

Last night I went to my kids' Winter Concert. I hated it. Does that mean I'm a bad daddy? Maybe so. But my suffering was real.

Just think about it. I had to watch performances from preschool through Grade 5 in a gym with horrible acoustics. The theme? Peace! Hello? Mongolia is not exactly at war with anyone, and hasn't been for generations. The theme ought to have been "let's improve the business environment so that investors don't leave" or something else relevant to the country.

And the performances? The horror, the horror! Imagine the technical skills of small children—mostly out-of-tune screeches and wails. Preschool was only bearable because of their absolute cuteness.The 5th graders were also OK, since at that age they're starting to show the very beginnings of talent.

But  there is a huge gap between the cuteness and talent. Grade 3, my son's class, is right in the middle. These poor kids performed  "The Hora," a traditional Jewish folk dance. The entire class stumbled clumsily in circles, like the zombies in "Night of the Living Dead."  An insult to Jewish history and culture, in my opinion.

I know that school concerts are good for children's development, and that it is my duty as a parent to watch them and praise them. I will do that. But I will continue to suffer at school concerts, at least until my kids are in 5th grade. When I think that this dark scenario is being repeated all over the world, year after year after year, I feel the collective pain of parents everywhere.