Dr. Ganzfield’s Baby and Child Care
(originally posted 12/10/2012)
First off, I can’t really come out and call this some inquiry into the grey area between fate and morality because it could also be looked at as so many other things. Secondly, and most importantly, it’s my actual life so the best you could call it is an interesting work in progress. Depending on your opinion of the topics discussed you might have some strong feelings about my circumstances but believe me … no stronger than I have.
It’s all a bit confusing at times.
My father was a well known psychic and my mother was an only slightly lesser renown fortune teller. That might sound odd but when you’re a kid whatever you grow up around seems the norm. I remember playing poker with my mom with tarot cards and the only difference I could tell was that even if you won there was always a little good news/bad news to it. Other than that my childhood was pretty much identical to most of my other friends.
Well, there was this one thing.
Being psychic my dad would punish me for things I hadn’t done yet. Things I was going to do. It was especially difficult leading up to events I was looking forward to because invariably I would be grounded at the last minute due to some upcoming transgression.
That wasn’t even the hard part, although sitting home while I wanted to be somewhere else was difficult, I won’t lie. But it wasn’t the hardest part. The hardest part was then doing the thing that got me in trouble in the first place. Sometimes weeks later. Sometimes things I didn’t even want to do but I felt I had to. It wasn’t that I believed if I didn’t I would upset the time/space continuum, it was more like I didn’t want to make my dad angry.
By not doing something bad.
That was pretty weird sometimes.
So you can see where the whole fate versus morality thing comes into play… but only if you believe in things like divination, clairvoyants and ESP. Otherwise you’re likely to write my entire childhood off as either abusive or a cruel joke. I try not to leap to any conclusions myself. Too much skin in the game, if you know what I mean.
Take, for instance, when I was not allowed in go to prom because I stole a car two months later. It all seemed so unfair. I had a car, why would I steal one? For two months I was trying to figure out not only why I was going to steal one but how to steal a car. I had no idea. In movies they pry off something on the steering wheel and thrust two wires at one another until the car roars to life, but I didn’t have the faintest clue how to approach it. Or where to approach it. My dad was always very vague on the details and when I pressed him for additional information he usually got quite testy. He would say that there were enough skeptics in the world without him having to come home and find one living comfortably under his own roof. Invariably my mother’s attempts at providing further clarity using her crystal ball came up empty.
When I was younger and I would be sent to my room without dessert because I was going to sneak some cookies the next day, at least I had the cookies to look forward to. I never really felt bad when I took them because I’d already done my time. It was like a pre-paid sin. I know how it sounds, now but you have to remember I was a kid. I would gauge the boundaries of my upcoming transgression on the severity of the punishment I received. For instance, if I knew it was the day I was rude to my teacher I had to figure out in my head just how rude I could be.
But the car thing was really out there. On the day I was supposed to commit the crime I remember trying to injure myself to get out of it. I jumped out of a tree and broke my ankle. My neighbor saw what went on and called an ambulance, so in a moment of complete clarity I ended up jumping off the stretcher and stealing the ambulance and driving myself to the hospital. Two birds, one stone. My parents told me they were proud of my composure, but were still glad I missed prom so I would learn something from the experience. I guess in retrospect that without discipline you’d never learn anything. Even if it ends up being what you don’t learn … which in this case was how to steal a car.