Friday, September 30, 2016

Elections and Kindergarten

Elections are hard on everyone it seems. They challenge our beliefs in democratic ideals and certainly make us pay close attention to basic rules of civility. All those things we learned in kindergarten just go out the window. Sometimes in the midst of it all we forget about simply being nice and accepting that other do not share our beliefs and never will.

My 8 year old grandson evidently was paying attention in kindergarten when he was taught those 16 rules written by Robert Fulghum all those years ago because he called me on one this summer.

We have a new car and I have claimed it for my own for this one summer. My husband drives the big car back and forth to the golf course and I scoot around in the little car with grandchildren in the back seat. The big car will stay in Tucson when we return next spring.

Brayden asked me why I didn't share the new car with his grandfather. That is what his dad would do. 

I was very quiet for a few seconds as I channeled the "Finding Nemo" seagulls, then I answered "Because it's mine."

"Really Grandma! You need to share." he said very emphatically.
Brayden when he was 6 or 7.

See what I mean. But, as it turns out, sharing does not come naturally for some of us. 

Brayden would also tell you not to hit people or be mean and if you do, to say you are sorry. 

Darn, I wish we were seeing more of that during our elections. The diverse political philosophies too often overlook sharing, playing fair and not hurting people.

When you look at Robert Fulghum's list, you see that "share everything" it as the very top of the list. Right under it is "Play Fair". I invite you read this one more time. It is a good reminder. 

It is just a thought.

1. Share everything. 
2. Play fair.
3. Don't hit people.
4. Put thngs back where you found them.
6. Don't take things that aren't yours.
7. Say you're SORRY when you HURT somebody.
8. Wash your hands before you eat.
9. Flush.
10. Warm cookies and cold milk are good for you.
11. Live a balanced life - learn some and drink some and draw some and paint some and sing and dance and play and work everyday some.
12. Take a nap every afternoon.
13. When you go out into the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.
14. Be aware of wonder. Remember the little seed in the Stryrofoam cup: The roots go down and the plant goes up and nobody really knows how or why, but we are all like that.
15. Goldfish and hamster and white mice and even the little seed in the Styrofoam cup - they all die. So do we.
16. And then remember the Dick-and-Jane books and the first word you learned - the biggest word of all - LOOK.”
Robert Fulghum, All I Really Need to Know I Learned in Kindergarten


  1. I have loved that list ever since I read that book for the first time! A wonderful reminder that we can ALL benefit from! Your grandson is wise and adorable!

    1. Yes, I think so but then aren't all grandchildren?

  2. I think Donald Trump skipped kindergarten.

  3. Shared with my FB friends. Good words. It is getting a little stinky with the elections.
    PS- I got a Mustang and hubby has a truck. We don't share either!

    1. You are my kind of woman Janette. The truth is my husband doesn't fit in our little car so next summer we will need to figure it out!

  4. My mom taught kindergarten, so back in the 60s growing up, we lived by those rules even before Fulghum wrote his book.


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