Schoolchildren, Workers And Downtime

The father comes home from a hard day at work and enjoys his well-earned “downtime”. He is, however, distracted from his enjoyment by indignation that his son has come home from an equally hard day at school and is not doing his four hours of homework. Moreover, the son has school six days a week, while the father works five; not to mention the schoolboy’s often longer commute. Whatever the son wants to do, it is axiomatic that he should be doing his homework instead; unless the parents want to take him somewhere to demonstrate their parenthood and thereby their human worth; in which case his claim that he needs to stay at home to finish his homework becomes a source of opposite but equally righteous indignation.

Everyone agrees that taking your work home with you is not good for your mental health – provided only that you are an employee and not at school. In what other occupation other than that of schoolchild do we expect people to work both all day and all evening? A factory that tried such a thing would face a strike, and executives who live like this rapidly succumb to burnout and yuppie flu. Moreover, adult wage-earners are allowed to knock back the gin and tonic as a way of coping, whereas schoolchildren are expected to be teetotal. They’re not supposed to have sex either. How many adults would tolerate such a regime?

Posted on February 3, 2011 at 10:11 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink
In: PARENTAL STATUS TECHNOLOGY, Hugo Grinebiter's Schooldays

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