martes, 22 de enero de 2013

"It's the Water!" -- on sale in Amazon Kindle Store

My latest bookThis is the story of Zane, a Peace Corps volunteer in Panama and Martin, a Canadian-born Californian. Both walk through different paths of life trying to solve lifelong issues. In the novel, the reader will join both youngsters through their journey, as their roads come together during graduate school in Northern California. The novel has many threads that touch on love, loss, self-discovery, travel, politics, identity, and an unexpected climax.
The manuscript was edited by Vickie Johnstone, a Book Junkies colleage from the U.K.
If you read it, I would appreciate a review on Amazon.

jueves, 3 de enero de 2013

Negative Premonitory Messages / Mensajes Premonitorios Negativos

I have already reached the wonderful number of 5 -- five -- grandchildren.  There is always something to be learned when listening to the messages they get concerning their childish, spontaneous and sometimes erratic behaviour.  In our Panamanian society some families can still afford a maid -- in some instances, a nanny.  But what I have heard concerns messages by grownups, regardless of their employment status.
The next-to-the-youngest may be jumping up and down on a chair... "You're going to fall down."  I would have said, "Keep your legs straight so you don't fall down."  End result, the kid falls on his head.
Kids are eating spaghetti in a restaurant:  "You're going to splash sauce on your clean shirt."  I would have placed a big napkin to work as a bib and said "... so you don't get your shirt dirty."  End result, kid gets blasted for spilling spaghetti sauce on his shirt.
Why is is so difficult to stop sending out  negative premonitory messages?
Oh, the king of all messages: "You're a klutz... You'll never get anything right."  End result, bad behaviour in school, low grades.... The child's reasoning:  "Well, this is the way I'm supposed to be, if my grownups keep telling  me so."
Did I do the same when I was a father?  It's great that I don't remember.  But from my kid's turn out, I guess not.

"Ráscalo en la cabeza porque le gusta y no te morderá".

Tengo 5 --cinco-- nietos.  Siempre hay algo que aprender de escuchar los mensajes que reciben de los adultos alrededor cuando efectúan comportamientos infantiles, espontáneos y en ocasiones erráticos.  En nuestra sociedad panameña algunas familias aún pueden costear una empleada -- ahora las llaman colaboradoras familiares -- y, en ocasiones, una nana.  Pero quiero referirme a los mensajes que los niños reciben de los adultos, independientemente del status laboral.
El penúltimo nieto puede estar brincando sobre una slla... "Te vas a caer."  Yo hubiera dicho, "Mantén tus piernas firmes para que no te caigas".  Resultado final, el chiquillo aterriza sobre su cabeza.
Los niños comen spaghetti en un restaurante.  "Te vas a echar salsa en tu camisa limpia".  Yo le hubiera colocado una tremenda servilleta o babero sobre la camisa mientas le digo... "para que no se te ensucie tu camisa limpia".  Resultado final, el chiquillo termina cascoteado por manchar su camisa con salsa de macarrones.
¿Por qué será tan difícil no enviar mensanes premonitorios negativos?
El rey de los mensajes: "Eres torpe... Nunca harás nada bien."  Resultado final, mal comportamiento escolar, bajo rendimiento general....  El razonamiento del niño:  "Debo ser así porque los adultos me lo han asegurado."
¿Hice lo mismo cuando fui padre?  Me alegro de no recordarlo.  Pero si veo el resultado final en mis hijos ya adultos y ya padres, creo que no.