I’ve noticed something startling about children due to being around my three little in-house barbarian sons. Their initial goals in terms of gainful employment revolve around traditionally manly jobs such as firefighters, policemen, astronauts, assassins, etc. These sorts of jobs are the modern equivalent of the tough, resourceful hunter-gatherer. However, as they age (and here I’m projecting via older cousins and other post-teenage friends and relatives), their ideas about work change. They discard the idea of the brutish firefighter (complete with axe, helmet and license to bash in doors and windows) and contemplate the dapper consultant.
The consultant, of course, can earn a lot more than the firefighter (unless you’re in California, where the firefighter can scoop up tremendous amounts of overtime and retire young with 90% pay in pension for the rest of his life), despite the fact that it’s a twitty sort of job, spent in offices and boardrooms and slowly losing skin color due to so much time spent in front of computers and beneath fluorescent lights.
It seems as if children’s ideas about work evolve from toughness to wimpiness. I suppose that’s a reflection on society. Of course, when the zombies invade or things collapse, the consultants (and the lawyers, politicians, community organizers, etc) will be the first to fall by the wayside. The interesting thing about this is that children seem to have an innate sense of what’s more stable and down to earth in terms of jobs. It’s only after they’ve watched a lot of Barney and gone to school that they get messed up.
So, what’s the takeaway from all this? Er… down with skool!