1.ON THE RELIEF OF NOT BEING A KNOW-IT-ALL
(I see that I have previously written on this topic--DIFFERENT TEACHING STYLES AND ON BEING THE #1 CHILD--in a post from August 2011,
I’m not sure about the significance of my returning to it just prior to heading back to yet another school year, my 30th at this particular institution, but here goes, anyway.)
As every eldest child knows, it can be exhausting to be a know-it-all. No one got that more right than J.D. Salinger in his "Raise High the Roof Beam, Carpenters, " where #1 son, Seymour Glass's suicide remains unexplained. I'm thinking that the responsibility of being the first of these excessively wise Glass children might have gotten to be too much for him.
If he had moved to middle-of-nowhere Italy, things might have turned out differently.
When you move to a new country, especially at an advanced age, all the know-it-all years vanish, leaving you with the illusion of being almost as fresh as your newborn granddaughter--that is, with everything to learn.
(Whatever I just wrote also resonates with a post from December 2012, TOUCHING HOME BASE FOR THE 5TH AND 66th TIME:DECEM...
I like that in that piece I refer to getting ready for the grandparent stage of the life cycle, and now there is a new little person in our family who did not exist before. Amazing!)