Hello

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by 200Meters, Apr 8, 2019.

  1. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    Well, my wife and I drove to see Youngest on Friday at the prison he is currently in. On Thursday, my wife called a very good friend, who knows what is going on, and asked if we could come for for the Friday night Sabbath dinner because we were depressed after the sentencing and didn't want to be on our own. She immediately invited us over, so we had only 1 Sabbath meal, Saturday lunch, to cook for on Friday. We weren't intending to go given that he initially wanted only me to come but he called Friday morning and said that he wanted to see us, as in the two of us. So off we went.

    We got there well ahead of 11:00, when Youngest said he had arranged the visit but we still waited a good while. We left most of stuff in the car. The car key we left in one of the coin-operated lockers at the visitors entrance. We went into the prison with absolutely nothing in our pockets except our ID cards and the locker key. We bought Youngest a phone card and two cartons of cigarettes (for him and for use as currency "inside") at the prison.

    Most of the guards there were brusque-to-surly in their attitude to the prisoners' families. I suppose I can't blame them.After all, we're the families of criminals and everybody knows that apples don't fall far from the tree, so... The guard who went through the clothes we had brought for Youngest (socks, underwear & sweatshirts) was actually very nice. (The clothes will be washed & given to Youngest when they are dry. This is in case the clothes were soaked in liquids containing drugs and then dried.) The visiting families were an interesting social mix: Religious Jews, secular Jews, Israeli Arabs (Palestinians from the "West Bank" are held in separate facilities), etc.

    When we were finally admitted (following pat-downs), we walked a circuitous route through this very large prison complex (which is actually composed of three separate prisons) until we got to the visiting room. Once again, we talked to Youngest on closed-circuit phones, through reinforced glass. That is always hard. He and my wife had a very heartfelt conversation and have reconciled. He is still temporarily being held with detainees on remand (people who are awaiting or undergoing trial). Most likely today (Monday), he will meet with a committee that will formally acknowledge him as a prisoner who has been sentenced. He will most likely be moved to another facility where he will be held with other sentenced prisoners, and not with detainees on remand. Youngest tells us that sentenced prisoners have better conditions.

    How long will he be in for? He told us yesterday that he could be in until anywhere from mid April to mid-October depending on his behavior and whether or not the Prison Service decides to release prisoners in order to ease overcrowding. The lawyer WhatsApped us last night and informed us that he will be appealing the sentence to the District Court, which is the next court up the food chain from the Magistrates Court. We have no problem with the sentence but the lawyer does not work for us.

    We then drove pack to our Jerusalem suburb, getting in about an hour and 15 minutes before the onset of the Sabbath. It is amazing how much you can get done in an hour and fifteen minutes. We made mulligatawny soup, chicken stir-fry, brown rice, a mixed salad and wholewheat cornflakes muffins. I baked 4 smallish loaves of wholewheat challa (bread) two weeks ago, so I didn't have to bake challa. Everything went into the fridge, some of it to be put on the Sabbath hotplate Saturday morning.

    Youngest just phoned me. He met this morning with the social worker; the committee will be tomorrow or Wednesday. The social worker said he will most likely be moved to a prison the remand wing of which he has been in before (see my very first post on this thread, that one, not far from the airport, much closer to where we live).

    Our love for Youngest, and for each other, along with our faith in G-d, are what are getting us through this.

    My wife & I think that Youngest would have done so well in the IDF. If only he would put his mind to it, he could have done very well, maybe even have been in an elite unit. His not having been in the army and his criminal record will be a millstone around his neck. Energy and talent he has, he must just decide to channel them in a positive direction.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HTdnGcd_yls

    :youreright:

    It's scary and very frustrating how little control we now have over their lives, as opposed to when we could hold them in one hand. Dealing with this is where our faith in G-d comes in.

    blushblushblush

    I just spoke to Mrs. 200Meters. Youngest called her too. It's always interesting to compare and contrast what he tells her & what he tells me. Apparently, he told her that he told the social worker that he is not interested in any rehab activities, that he just wants to do his time and be released. That is not good but hopefully it is just tough-guy bluster. Let's see where he is moved and if we can contact the social worker there. The rabbi of the synagogue Youngest broke into and stole from has said that he would like to meet with Youngest. Who knows? We shall see.

    I thank everyone for their sage advice and words of comfort and support. This board rocks.
     
  2. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    I am having a bad day today, and there are a few things in your post 200meters that touched my heart.

    I think that I have dealt badly with the shame of my son's situation. That it shows me up for what I am, deep inside. I have tried and tried to live an exemplary life, to show that I have worth. And then, because my son can't thrive, I am shown up for what I am, a deeply defective person. Thank goodness I have been studying my faith, that teaches we are all broken...and with the potential to manifest the Divine at the same time.
    This made me tear up. How do religious Jews such as yourself bear this? The stigma, the shame, the shattering vulnerability....
    I was able to spend an hour here, looking for recipes for cornflakes muffins. A refuge from reality. Why cornflake muffins?
    Look. I feel differently. I shop at Costco. I live in a medium sized town remote from where I feel comfortable, where I feel a fish out of water, but Costco feels like home, because whether in metropolitan areas or in remote areas such as where I live, they are the same.

    There is a cashier at my Costco. He's been there years and years. He treats every single person like they are the most important person. He tries to make a relationship with every customer that comes through his line. He connects. He's real. He focuses his attention on each person, and he cares. For the minute or so you are near him, he does whatever in the world he can to make you feel seen, and known.

    When he's not doing that, he is as if dancing, there with the products and his cash register. It is a kind of choreography of spirit. I have a kind of love for this man. And the deepest respect.

    Which is to say that I feel we have the capacity each of us to become wonderful and powerful by just manifesting it, from one second to the next. Abracadabra.

    I spent my whole life making myself into somebody that had value. believing that a title, some change in me, would render me "somebody." Clueless that infinite value already existed within me, if I claimed it. This man understands this about himself and about every other person who comes through his line and his life.

    As I finish this diatribe I realize we are saying the same thing, 200meters. What you say here is
    I apologize. I thought I had to be a thing, a profession, to have value. What I did not understand was that it was to be. You are saying the same thing. The channeling of good, the choice to do this can happen in an instant, and requires not one thing to change, except the choice and the desire to do so.

    I think a large part of my despair is that in relation to my son I become somebody I don't recognize. Rather than calling upon the best I can be, my interactions with my son become degraded. I become defined by anger, by fear, by cynicism, by a kind of shame, by reactivity, by despair and blame, and by hopelessness. And I can't seem to get myself out of this, in relation to him. I am at the point where I can't tolerate any contact at all because I lose myself.

    Thank you for the opportunity to get in touch with these feelings here on this thread. I feel tiny tears welling up. And I feel the pain behind the words. If I can feel the pain, the toxicity will drain, and I will be back to myself.

    200meters, I don't know what to do. I am lost. When I feel this way I want to die. When I begin to feel this way and I write this here, I scare people. But I don't know what else to do.

    You give and give to your boy. I don't have anything left.
     
    Last edited: Jan 20, 2020
  3. Acacia

    Acacia Active Member

    You seem to be looking through a clear lens at your son's behavior and perspective. It is so difficult to have insight and to be powerless to make those we love take steps in their own best interest. Your son is lucky to have parents who have done so much to help him change his course positively. Whether he uses those opportunities or not is out of your hands. I also hear the effect his choices have had on you, but that somehow you have managed to keep a sense of irony and humor, and love for your son intact.

    My DS has (now 34), unfortunately, spent the last twenty years defying authority - both ours and the law - and the continued legal, personal, physical, and emotional consequences make his future more and more difficult. I pray that your son chooses a better way. I also know what it's like to sit in a courtroom and watch a son in prison garb and shackles be escorted in. It hurts.

    My heart goes out to you.
     
  4. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    200Meters

    Your son is still very young as it relates to many others on this board.

    As Copa had mentioned, I recently posted a thread about my son's "evil twin" taking over from about age 15 to age 22.

    There was nothing we could do to stop him from the quick twirl down the drain. Thankfully he did not die during his drug use and complete disregard for his life. He also did not get any felonies which would follow him the rest of his life. He definitely had a guardian angel watching over him.

    We honestly think it was the Devil himself that took a hold of our son. My husband actually slept in his room on son's bed (which we later found out the mattress had molded due to throwing up many times and not cleaning it up) while we were transitioning a move to the Gulf Coast and house sale fell through, and SWEARS he saw the Devil's face in the doorway of son's room while trying to sleep. He till gets chills when he tells the story and my husband is not the type to make up stories like that. Ever.

    You and the Mrs. are doing everything you can do. You are being supportive parents and taking care of yourselves too. I am hoping that your son will "see the light" and turn things around. We never know what makes the brain trigger. For our son I think it was maturity and wanting to get his family back. He is doing so much better although not perfect and I still worry. He is in college now and holding a job and stable. He was never stable before so having him stable now means the world to us. I never have asked him what really happened during those dark days. Someday I will but we are not ready to discuss it yet.

    Hang in there and keep doing what you are doing. Tough love is still love.
     
  5. Estherfromjerusalem

    Estherfromjerusalem Well-Known Member

    Copa, I feel your pain so so strongly, and I wanted to send you a hug. Just for the sake of giving you a hug.

    But I want to share with you one thought that occasionally comforts me (I also feel like a failure, our problems with our son are ongoing but I haven't got the strength to write about them at the moment). When I look at everything that has happened and blame myself, I try and remember that all of us parents, we do the best that we can. If we have done the best we could, then we couldn't have done more, and that is all that can be expected of us, to do the best we can with and for our children.

    Love, Esther
     
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  6. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    Hey folks...

    I apologize for doing the incommunicado thing for the last week+ but I am getting over a rather nasty bout of sinusitis. I was home from the office Tuesday-Thursday last week with an on-and-off fever (up to 38.5C/101.3F) at one point. (Notice how I'm not saying that I was home from work. I put in three full days of work, all while sitting up in bed.) I went to see the doctor last Wednesday evening. I am now (back at the office, as of Sunday) on Augmentin. Those damned horse pills are taking care of my sinuses very nicely but are also using my digestive tract as their personal punching bag. I'm on probiotics, which are countering some of the untoward side effects of the Augmentin. I didn't go to synagogue last Friday night/Saturday; Mrs. 200Meters refused to let me out of the house.

    Let's see...

    Youngest is still at the prison where has been, the one we visited him at two weeks ago. He has, however, been moved to the wing for post-trial prisoners who have already been sentenced. He is in a cell with 5 other such prisoners. We will go see him again this Friday. He seems to be in good enough spirits.

    You would thing that the bits of cloth that we cover our heads with (I'm currently wearing a big, round, brightly-colored knitted kippa; Mrs. 200Meters usually wears some kind of beret when we are out & about) should mean something, that said bit of cloth should indicate that the Jewish person wearing it is more morally and ethically minded, more spiritual, more conscious of G-d and His presence in our lives. Those bits of cloth should mean those things but all too often they're just rags to mop up the moral/spiritual/ethical detritus of our lives. When Mrs. 200Meters & I first started visiting Youngest in the hoosegow, I would look at the other visiting families and think how we weren't like them. But I realize that's just my being a snob. That's a rationalizing lie that I tell myself. We are exactly like them.

    'Cause we had leftover cornflakes that nobody seemed to be eating.

    The muffins came out really good.

    Youngest certainly has infinite value within him,of that I have no doubt. He just has to recognize it and claim it. Ditto for Oldest.

    Cape Town, South Africa, is a spectacularly beautiful city. But when the Portuguese navigator Bartolomeu Dias first sailed around the the southwest corner of Africa in 1488 and discovered the sea route to India, he was actually blown around the cape in a storm. When he eventually got to back to Lisbon, he told King John II that he had taken the liberty of naming the cape, the Cape of Storms. The king vetoed that and being the king, renamed it the Cape of Good Hope. Dias saw the present storms. But the king could look past the gloomy present toward the good hope of a bright future. Mrs. 200Meters & I keep praying (literally!) that like the king, Youngest will look past his gloomy present and understand that he can have a bright future.

    I don't know that you are lost at all. You are wandering. But as J.R.R. Tolkien writes: "Not all those who wander are lost / The old that is strong does not wither / Deep roots are not reached by the frost." Do not allow your present wandering to mislead you into thinking that you are lost. You are not. The passing frost cannot reach your deep roots.

    You will be surprised how much you have left.

    I couldn't do this without Mrs. 200Meters. We couldn't do this without each other. Our marriage is the axis, the center, around which everything else in my life revolves. We have been married for over 31 years. She is the blessing of my life.

    Good for him, and for you. May G-d bless him that he continues to grow.

    That is all we can do. The rest is up to G-d.
     
  7. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Thank you for this 200Meters.

    Thank you for the update. I am glad you're feeling somewhat better and back to work.

    Is news about the US impeachment reaching you there?
     
  8. Beta

    Beta Active Member

    Copa, I'm sorry you're having a bad day.
    This resonates with me. I'm sorry that you feel this.
     
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  9. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    Very much so. Israel is the 51st state.:rolleyes:

    I was only 11 when Nixon resigned. I remember coming home from school, doing my homework and then wanting to watch cartoons or baseball or wrestling and all there was on all three channels were these old men talking and talking and talking and talking and ...

    Is the news about our prime minister, who has just been indicted for a slew of corruption-related charges in 3 separate cases reaching you there?

    There was a point when I was desperately holding onto my anger, vis-a-vis Youngest because it was the only emotion I felt toward him and if I let it go I would have nothing to bind me to him.

    We will not be going to see Youngest tomorrow. We will go at 08:30 Monday morning. Since getting from our Jerusalem 'burb to the prison complex where Youngest is by 08:30 will be a pain in the backside, we are going to crash Sunday night with Oldest (who lives much closer) and then take Monday off.
     
  10. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Have a good trip and visit, 200Meters. I'm travelling today. So brief. Yes. Netanyahu's problems are a story here. It's hard to believe how he keeps his grasp on power. And now with the new plan....is he holding onto the support of the majority of the people? Does this even matter anymore? In my country it seems like power is no longer tethered to public will. Or that's my sense.
     
  11. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    We saw Youngest yesterday morning. I will not get used to seeing him in an orange jumpsuit & as often as we visit him, speaking to him via a closed-circuit phone, through reinforced glass, I won't get used to that either. But he seemed in good enough spirits and said that he's managing. Oldest & his ladyfriend joined us. Afterwards we went for brunch at this cafe/restaurant.

    Youngest said the police in our Jerusalem suburb want to talk to him about something and wanted him to come to the police station in our 'burb today, which means that the Prison Service would have to allocate the personnel and their time, and a vehicle to schlep him there. Youngest told me (over the phone) this morning that the guards suggested that he refuse, which would oblige the police (Israel has one integrated, national police force) to go to the prison. (Don't you just love these little bureaucratic power games?) Youngest claims not to know what this is about. A colleague suggested that the police want to talk to him about his cutting off the ankle thinggie and running away from house arrest, which would be an offense in their own right and thus subject to police investigation. I suppose we'll just have to wait & see.
     
  12. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    My colleague was quite wrong about why the police want to talk to Youngest. He was brought to the local police station in our Jerusalem 'burb yesterday. The police told the Prison Service that they had a judge's order that Youngest be brought hither and that was that. I posted this on January 14:

    Regarding those "threats of violence", Youngest apparently threatened to do violence to / kill his ex-girlfriend & her brother. He was extremely upset and in a very stormy emotional state, and was running off at the mouth. Remember, he went to a party and never went anywhere even remotely near his ex-girlfriend or her family. But his ex-girlfriend filed a complaint against him with the police. That is why the police wanted to question him. He told them that he was in a highly emotional state and never, at any time, intended, or sought, to commit any act of violence. Hopefully, this won't go anywhere.

    Yes, Youngest has got to learn to control his mouth & his temper and stop being his own worst enemy and he deserves what he gets; however, the ex-girlfriend didn't need to file a complaint against him. She had to have known that by breaking his house arrest, Youngest was in a heap of trouble and was going to jail. In American football terms, this was piling on. I think it was gratuitous and vindictive. That being said, Youngest has got to learn to control his mouth & his temper...

    It's never boring.

    Actually, boring would be nice...
     
  13. Beta

    Beta Active Member

    200 Meters, I've kept up with your posts about your son, and I wanted to say I'm really sorry for what you and your wife are going through. I do appreciate your humor and irony though, I must say.

    My husband and I will be making our second trip to Israel at the end of April and will spend several days in Jerusalem, near the Mahane Yehuda market area. Really looking forward to it. I chuckled to see your link for the restaurant; that's one of the things I'm looking forward to--the food!!
     
  14. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Dear 200Meters: In my state this might be called a "terrorist threat" and as a felony result in prison time. I agree with this:
    Regardless of her motivations, I think the girl did youngest a favor, that he has consequences for this, and the ability to learn. It may have been vindictive of her, but I believe this is besides the point. The point is that youngest learn to curb himself and learn that there is a price to be paid for acting out, sometimes, disproportionately so. Sometimes unwarranted. Sometimes the consequences are completely beyond what is justified. So. We have to learn to curb ourselves, because life is out of control. We can only control our own piece. And even then, we have so little control.

    I know you know this, 200. But truly, I believe the right thing happened. She may have done wrong, but the right thing happened. I want youngest to learn NOW. Not later when it could be worse.

    I told you before how I think he sounds like a natural born leader. He's got so many strengths. He just needs to mature. G-d willing, he learns.
    Lucky you, Beta. How I envy you. I have never gone to Israel, but want to, so, so bad.
    Me too! 200Meters told us about another restaurant too, that sounded marvelous. I think he and Mrs. 200Meters went for their anniversary. Maybe he'll remind us of the name.

    Beta, I found it: shloshet akaztavim Restaurant in Netanya. They went for eldest son's birthday. This restaurant sounds so good.
     
    Last edited: Feb 6, 2020
  15. Beta

    Beta Active Member

    Copa, We went in 2014 when the church my husband was pastoring gave the trip to us as a gift; otherwise, we would have never been able to go. This time, instead of going with a tour group, we're just going on our own and making up our own itinerary. We've got probably half a dozen national parks we're going to see. Looking forward to it but also a little scared. I only know a few words of Hebrew and Israel isn't always the most stable place on earth.
     
  16. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    I think you may be right. Yeah, you're right.

    Good point.

    Yep.

    That restaurant in Netanya was pretty good. A typical Israeli grill house. They offer rather unsophisticated fare but they do it very well.

    We probably will not be going back there though next time we are up that way. Mrs. 200Meters have been thinking for quite a while about becoming vegetarians. I want to go ovo-lacto for the reason that I'm becoming more and more unkeen on animals being killed just so I can eat. Mrs. 200Meters would like to move more in a vegan direction as she thinks it is healthier. What I will not do is be a zealot. If we are invited out for a Sabbath or holiday meal, I will not risk offending our host by not eating what they serve. We're still in the figuring-stuff-out and feeling-our-way-along stage. But we are not buying meat, fish or chicken and do not want to eat in meat restaurants.

    Send me a private message & let's see if we can meet to eat though not for meat (that will be a feat that can't be beat). Seriously!

    Which ones??!! I volunteer to play tour guide for any in the general Jerusalem-ish area!

    Don't be scared! You don't need to know a word of Hebrew and Israel is stable enough. Potentially unstable areas (such as near the Gaza Strip) or deep in Judea or Samaria (the later is generally OK in daylight) are avoided easily enough. The Times of Israel is my go-to site for English news here.

    Actually, Mrs. 200Meters and I were in the area adjacent to the Gaza Strip this past Friday. We went to see the fields and fields of red anemones there.

    Back to business...

    Youngest told us yesterday that he is being moved to another prison, closer to the Jerusalem area but with a reputation for housing tough & problematic prisoners.

    He also told us that some folks whom he owes money to have contacted him at the prison where he is now. He says that they said if he coughs up NIS 2000 (about $584) they will view their business with him as closed. Youngest has asked us for the money. On the one hand, even if we use Israel's domestic equivalent of sending money via Western Union (done through the post office here), in which they won't know our names, ID numbers or phone numbers, they'll know that it was us, Youngest's parents, who coughed up the moolah. What's to prevent them from "asking" us for more money, or they'll hurt Youngest? Youngest says that they're not those kind of folks. Mrs. 200Meters are NOT thrilled about the matter. However, if we refuse and Youngest is hurt / beaten, we'll never forgive ourselves and Youngest will never speak to us again. We can spare the $584; that is not the issue. We told Youngest that after this transaction, the Bank of Parents will be closed no matter what he says or what he says they say. We told him that if we ever hear from these folks, we will go straight to the police. Youngest has promised to pay us back when he is able to do so. I'll keep everyone posted.
     
  17. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    Dear 200Meters

    What a tough spot about the money. I think I would have done the same as you. One time only. I am not sure that youngest is NOT involved in this shakedown. Because that is what it is. The sooner youngest gets that his messes, are his, the better. That time seems to be NOW. If he keeps heading down this path, he is choosing it. I would urge you to start posting here during the decision making process, not after. I have found that even though I CHOOSE differently than the prevailing "advice" I receive, in the long run it is very helpful to me to hear the panoply of views. We are the most vulnerable when our kids come to us in peril. But this is when the learning seems to be greatest, in my experience.

    I am not too far behind you with the Vegan business. My only issue is I'm a milk user in my coffee and tea. I have tried milk alternatives (almond, cashew, etc.--the only ones I've not tried are oat and coconut, and this is my only stumbling block). Cheese I love, but I think I could move beyond.

    Maybe the thing to do is what you're considering. What is that called, lacto-ovo or something, when you eat eggs and dairy? Maybe I don't need to be an extremist.

    Good to hear from you 200Meters.

    I am worried about Youngest in that he seems to be gang-oriented at this point. He seems not to be vulnerable. Rather, his choices seem to be driving this, I fear. He's too full of himself as a "bad boy." That would be more the reason for you and Mrs.200Meters to get tough. To not feed this.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2020
  18. Copabanana

    Copabanana Well-Known Member

    What's to prevent them from "asking" us for more money, or they'll hurt Youngest? Youngest says that they're not those kind of folks.

    My quote thing is not working. OK. This is fishy to the extreme. How is Youngest so sure of these so called perpetrators who are supposedly strong-arming him? If he's so sure that they would do no harm, then why pay them anything? 200Meters. I wish I didn't think this but I fear youngest is in on this extortion plot; maybe he hatched it entirely. And that would mean that he's making you, his parents, into his marks.
     
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2020
  19. RN0441

    RN0441 100% better than I was but not at 100% yet

    That sounds shady!!

    Are you sure he won't use the money for drugs in prison? Do you feel he can be trusted?

    My son was a Devil at that age. He had NO compassion for us and no love. We have moved past that but he was a big liar in those days. So hard to even think about now!! I will never forget that.
     
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  20. 200Meters

    200Meters A real bustard

    Thanks.

    I went to a post office this morning & transferred the moolah to whoever. We made it very clear to Youngest that this is a one-off.

    We are not sure either. But I can certainly believe that Youngest, whom I do not credit for mature, sagacious thinking, might have made an error in judgement and borrowed money from people that he shouldn't have. He could also simply be playing us.

    This reminds me of a poem by Stephen Crane (my favorite poet). The poem is "The sage lectured brilliantly":
    _____

    The sage lectured brilliantly.
    Before him, two images:
    "Now this one is a devil,
    And this one is me."
    He turned away.
    Then a cunning pupil
    Changed the positions.

    Turned the sage again:
    "Now this one is a devil,
    And this one is me."
    The pupils sat, all grinning,
    And rejoiced in the game.
    But the sage was a sage.
    _____

    We try to be the sage here.

    Deal. I will try my best.

    Mrs. 200Meters is the one drawn to veganism. I am quite content to be ovo-lacto and eat dairy products and eggs.

    We made a pot of mushroom-and-barley soup yesterday except that we used wheat berries instead of barley and it came out very good. We have never cooked with wheat berries before and this was an experiment that worked.

    I don't know about gang involvement. He has to survive in prison. About the getting tough thing. I will repeat that we have made it clear as can be to Youngest that the Bank of Mom and Dad is now closed and that this was a one-off. If he asks for more, we will politely tell him to eff off (well, not in those exact words but that's what we will mean).

    He is full of himself as a ne'er-do-well. In Israel first-time, non-violent offenders routinely have one-third of their sentence wiped away. Youngest told me this morning that he will decline this because it would entail a night curfew and him going to treatment/therapy of some kind. He said he wants to do his time and be released with minimal strings attached. A Saul-on-the-road-to-Damascus moment he has not had.

    Of course it sounds shady, because it is shady.

    Beats us and beats us.

    But if he got assaulted and beaten over this, we would never forgive ourselves. I'm willing to take a chance and pony up $584, this one time. Only.

    Ouch.

    An ad on an American news show that I like (I watch it on my laptop) keeps running a line from Jefferson Airplane's phenomenal "White Rabbit" sung by the amazingly phenomenal Grace Slick. Click here to listen to the song (not the ad.) Look at the underlined lines.

    When logic and proportion have fallen sloppy dead
    And the white knight is talking backwards
    And the red queen's off with her head
    Remember what the Dormouse said

    In the world in which we live, in which logic and proportion have long since fallen sloppy dead, we would do well to remember what the Dormouse says in "Alice in Wonderland".

    [​IMG]

    What does the Dormouse say?

    Gibberish! He speaks utterly absurd gibberish!

    Because life is, fundamentally, absurd. The only meaning it has is the meaning that we give it. This means that we have an awesome challenge and responsibility. It's up to us, entirely.

    Rant over.

    Carry on.