Dear Grandparenting: I must be living right. It’s been my pleasure to meet America’s upcoming stars — a future president of the U.S., countless CEOs and high-tech wizards, a budding prima ballerina, leading scientists-in-waiting, one soon to be greatest hockey player ever and a fledgling Picasso.
What did I do to deserve such good fortune? It’s ridiculously easy. Just hang around with a bunch of competitive grandparents and wait for the bragging to begin.
Grandparents are famous for blowing their horn, but it’s getting out of hand. What’s wrong with these people? It’s crazy boasting about how rich and famous your grandchild will become.
This is what’s wrong in our country. Everyone and their uncle are into fame. I don’t pretend my grandchildren are headed for stardom. I pray they’ll be safe and happy, period. What do you make of this bragging nonsense? Jody Brookshear, Johnson City, TN
Dear Jody: The world is teeming with grandparents who seemingly make it their job to brag, but over-the-top boasts are rightfully enough to make listener’s eyes glaze over.
There’s no stopping some braggarts. Boasting feels good, at least according to Harvard University researchers who found that sharing information about one’s life can trigger pleasurable brain sensations, somewhat along the lines of consuming a good meal or having sex.
Be that as it may, toning down lavish praise to a more realistic level generally pleases all, grandchildren included. It lowers the risk of offending bystanders with far fetched boasts, launching another round of one-upping each other. Youngsters can become embarrassed by the attention or harbor different plans. Brag if you will, but do keep things in perspective.
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GRAND REMARK OF THE WEEK
Annie Brown from Sidney, OH took granddaughter Lisa shopping to let her pick out a gift for her 11th birthday. “Don’t rush it sweetie. Find what you really want,” said Annie.
“That’s why I love you Granny,” said Lisa. “You make me feel like you have all the time in the world for me.”
Dee and Tom, married more than 50 years, have eight grandchildren. Together with Key, they welcome questions, suggestions and Grand Remarks of the Week. Send to P.O. Box 27454, Towson, MD, 21285. Call 410-963-4426.