Cats in the Cradle

Phone.jpgDo you remember the song Cats in the Cradle by Harry Chapin? It tells the story of a father who is too busy to spend time with his son and when his son gets older he becomes just like his dad. He becomes too busy to spend time with his father.

I was reminded of that song while I was at the movies with Emily and James on the weekend. We went to see Monsters vs Aliens. A great animated flick.

A guy with a son aged around 6 or 7 sat next to us. While it was nice to see that he was taking him to the movies on a Saturday morning it was disheartening to see that he was on the phone at least three times during the movie. Admittedly he kept his voice very low and wasn’t really disturbing those around him but it made me so sad to think that he couldn’t switch his phone off for just a couple of hours to totally enter into spending time with his boy.

I wonder what kind of message that was giving the boy. Dad’s willing to take him to the movies but he’s not really interested in the things that interest his son. Dad will sit next to his son but he’d rather be talking to someone else.

The shocking truth is that I’m not the perfect parent. In fact I’m nowhere near being the perfect parent but some things are fairly obvious. If we want our children to feel loved and accepted we need to spend time with them. We need to give them our undivided attention. We need them to know that they are vitally important to us and that there are few things that are more important than spending time focussed on building relationship.

Just as in the song, a day will come when we want to know that we’re important to our children. When that day comes they’re likely to treat us as we’ve treated them. That’s either a frightening or comforting thought depending on the messages we give our children when they’re young.

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Phones become tracking devices

phone.jpgApparently tens of thousands of people in Hong Kong have signed up for a service that lets them monitor the movements of other people, such as their spouses, by mobile phone.

The service is called “Follow Me, Follow You” and it offers subscribers unlimited spot searches to track a person’s location by identifying the location of their mobile phone signal.

The service can only be used to track people if both parties agree to the searches. It was launched in 2005 and has been growing ever since.

It’s not just about suspicious people checking up on each other. Most subscribers are parents who use want to search for their kids to ensure their safety or to locate elderly parents who may have lost their way home.

It’s a great idea if used the right way. I reckon it might even come in handy for people who are constantly misplacing their phones.

Would you sign up to a service like that? Who would you track? Would you allow someone else to keep tabs on you?

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