Leave It to Kids for Insights on Parenting

Jim Martin, who teaches fifth and sixth grade at Miller Elementary School in Escondido, thought a good way to get to know his students at the beginning of the school year would be for them to compose stories on, “If I were a Parent.”

Most of the kids wanted to raise families in two-story houses, have their boys play in sports and the girls learn to dance. As adults, these kids would drive Corvettes and Mercedes and, in the case of one boy, “a lamburginy.”

Some kids want to be popular with their children. “If I was a Mom I would not send my kids to school,” wrote Michelle. And Paul wrote, “I would be nice but strick and always give back scraches.”

On matters of discipline, Ken wrote, “I would punish my kids by taking away his motorcyucle if it were a boy, but if she were a girl I would take away her jewelry, brush, makeup and last but not least her new fashion neon clothes.”


And Jason wrote, “If I was a dad I would be very nice unless he was a pain then I would be very mean.” Fair enough.

From the sounds of their letters, seems that some kids want to duplicate their own life experiences. Wrote Brian, “If I were a dad I would boss the kids around and make them do work through the whole day. I would make them do their homework when they got home, before they went outside to play. I would only let them play for two hours then they have to come in and read a book.” And Zachary wrote, “I would have glasses. I would grow a mustash. I would always ware old stuff. I would have one kid.”

Some kids sounded downright pragmatic. “I’d want a big car that could fit six people and they wouldn’t be squished. I’d also want a car that would only fit two people in it,” Katie wrote. “The last thing I’d want is to live near my parents,” she added.

For Michelle, there was another matter before worrying about motherhood. “First I have to find a husband.”

Samantha was one step ahead of her. “I’d marry a nice smart handsome guy with a job that pays a lot like an orthadontist or a neuro surgion.”

Pity Joel’s children. “I would make the boys mow the lawn. My girls would be maids for my house.”

And pity Billy’s parents. “I would spoil my kids and then take them to my parents house and have them tear up their furniture.”

Convalescing Skyline

Poway’s sharp, full-color marketing brochure, titled “Opportunities Abound in the City in the Country,” includes a handsome photograph of what looks like a modern, concrete-and-reflective-glass industrial building.

Well, not quite.

It’s an exterior view of a brand new convalescent home in town.

“It’s hard to show people what a modern industrial building in Poway looks like because we don’t have any modern industrial buildings yet,” remarked City Manage Jim Bowersox. “But we were able to photograph the convalescent hospital from just the right kind of an angle to make it look like what a modern industrial building would look like if we did have one.”

Soothing Anxieties

Our mailbag has produced these related items:

- At Southwestern College, a series of workshops beginning Nov. 13 is designed to “reduce math anxiety” experienced by people who turn faint at the thought of balancing a checkbook, preparing a budget or otherwise working with numbers.

A counselor will show students how to use stress-reducing exercises, and a math teacher will relate math to less-threatening games and puzzles.

- At Pomerado Hospital in Poway, audio tapes are being offered to anxious patients to help them relax before surgery. One tape leads the patient on a 30-minute narrative rich with quieting imagery. The other tape is 45 minutes of soft instrumental music and sounds of nature, such as ocean waves.

Don’t worry, you still get anesthesia for surgery. And when you start to add up the hospital bills, you may want to take the course on reducing math anxiety.

Gambling on Marriage

In our Now-You’ve-Heard-It-All Department we bring you the love story of Saundra Jacome and David (Doc) Morgan. She works at the Sycuan Indian bingo palace near El Cajon; he’s a bingo customer, and they met at the first bingo game back in ’83.

They’re getting married Saturday.

Yep, in a public ceremony at the Sycuan bingo palace.

“We think there’s just no place like the bingo hall for a wedding ceremony,” she said. “Just think how great it will be when we tell our children and grandchildren we were married in a bingo hall.”

License Plate Messages

The woman driving the Oldsmobile in Oceanside obviously wants to leave no doubt about her place in the work force. Her license plate frame carries the inscription, “I Make Policy, Not Coffee.”

Then there’s the woman driver in Escondido who seems to have found a different vocation. The personalized license plates on her Volvo station wagon proclaim, “SHOW FIR.”