MILK: A SHORT STORY IN A TALL GLASS — PLUS, YOU COULD WIN TICKETS TO SUPER BOWL XLVIII
As a parent there will be times when you’ve got to have the tough conversations. Or you can delay and avoid those conversations, thereby requiring your spouse to take care of the difficult discussions. For instance, one of my boys seems to be struggling with doing homework. He does very well at playing video games and spending time with friends, but when it’s time to do homework he suddenly has an urgent need to do something else. Like brush his teeth. Or play with the dog. Or eat a bowl of cereal. Clearly, it was time to have a talk.
So I decided to sit my son down, and discuss with him my concerns about Life. And when I say Life, I’m referring to the breakfast cereal. His mom would be back from her business trip in a few days, and hopefully she would then address the homework issue. In the meantime, I had my own concern to address.
In our home we eat a lot of cold cereal. Not just Life, but also Froot Loops, Honey Nut Cheerios, and Golden Grahams. I love the cereal, but for me the best part is drinking the milk when the cereal is gone. That last half-cup of sugar-infused goodness at the bottom of the bowl is what life is all about.
But my son wasn’t drinking the milk. He would eat the cereal and then dump the best part into the sink! That’s like climbing a mountain but stopping 100 feet short of the summit, or listing to a song by Rush but turning it off before the drum solo. He was sitting in the waiting room, but skipping the appointment.
It’s not that he doesn’t enjoy milk, in fact he loves it. Loving milk and drinking it by the gallon is a time-honored tradition in my family. When my distant relatives trekked across the plains they took with them a handcart filled with milk. When my ancestors on the Mayflower crossed the Atlantic they forewent suitcases in favor of full-to-the-brim milk jugs. Ancient cave drawings show my family around a campfire, roasting woolly mammoths and drinking milk.
Why then was my son eating his cold cereal but not drinking the milk? We may never know. But I sat him down and asked him about it. I let him know that the cereal was like an appetizer to whet the palate, a mere warm-up to the main event. The milk is the reward (An 8 oz. glass of milk contains nine essential nutrients, including eight grams of high-quality protein. Protein in the morning can help keep you full, so you don’t feel hungry by mid-morning.)
He sat patiently as I expounded the splendors of milk. He listened, and then he said ‘okay.’ And ever since that conversation he has always finished the milk. That’s the way he is, he makes a decision and never looks back. I wish I could say it was because of my unmatched reasoning and ability to persuade that convinced him. But it wasn’t. It was just the power and taste of milk.
Hopefully my wife will now do something about the homework.
YOU COULD WIN TICKETS TO SUPER BOWL XLVIII AND SCORE FOR LOCAL SCHOOLS
The “got milk?” Campaign and Fuel Up to Play 60 Breakfast Blitz program is helping to provide $250,000 in grants to local schools across the country to help give kids greater access to a healthy breakfast. Now through Feb. 17, when you buy milk you can vote to have a portion go to a local school.
No purchase necessary. Find official rules at http://milk.am/dadbblitz
Disclosure: I wrote this post while participating in the got milk? FUTP60/Breakfast Blitz Promotion.