Religion… Meh

There is positive research on raising religion-free children. This is what we have been doing, and the findings, plus what has long been known in criminology, don’t surprise me. No offense to my religious friends, but to sell a child on a religion, you are encouraging belief in a fantastical story, a set of “facts” that are circularly supported by faith. Morality exists apart from religion. If religion touts some of the same morality, great. You don’t need religion to tell you to be excellent to each other, not to harm people if you wouldn’t want people to harm you, or that certain things are inherently wrong. You don’t have to suspend your rational mind to be a good person, and you might just be less susceptible to behaving as a bad person due to irrationality. At any rate, interesting stuff.

Name By Sound, People

This is fascinating data and analysis of a naming trend that’s gotten out of hand, making names ending in N the overwhelming choice for boys. A big factor is rhyming name families, including sets of the same name with many spellings. Take all the spellings and call them one name, and something like Jayden, a name I only heard of for the first time several years ago, is up in popularity with the classic popular names. When the wife and I were picking names, apart from two of them being homages, we pointedly tried for ones that were not in the top 100. By sound, not spelling. We even preferred middle names that wouldn’t be too popular, without being weird or hard to spell, either.

Brief Confession

I have to say that as much as I admire Glenn Reynolds and appreciate his blog, every time he asks if sending your kid to public school is parental malpractice? I want to write him a long screamy letter asking him JUST WHAT THE FUCK ELSE I’M SUPPOSED TO DO. Because over here in barely-lower-middle-class-land, we’re doing the best we can with what we’ve got.

OTOH, we’ve actually had people tell us that we shouldn’t have had kids because we won’t be able to pay for their college, so I shouldn’t be surprised, really. Can’t pay for private school or afford a parent at home to homeschool? Guess you suck as a parent. Bad mentality, and I hate to see any hint of it from someone I’d expect better from. I suspect that’s not what he thinks he means, but the implication is too strong not to piss me off.

God’s Eyes

Eldest child learned to make these at school, and they became an obsession around here for a bit. In fact, she handed them out as Valentines to her class instead of the traditional pre-printed cartoon character cards. Here’s a tutorial, if you’re interested in getting addicted yourself.


Eldest child just learned last night how to make toast in the toaster oven. She is currently feeding her siblings a mildly ridiculous number of slices, which they are going wild for because they are so impressed that she made them. I don’t think I’ve ever seen the girl so proud of herself, and it’s making me smile, even if she is going on about her toast-making skill at great length. :)

This Hits Home

My marriage has been in the process of ending for somewhere between six and nine years, depending who’s counting from where (just short of six years since she wanted to break up, under a year since she changed her mind, and under three months since she decided she really meant it and I decided I accepted that, but we and the kids never stopped living together). There is a lot on 36 Things I Wish Someone Told Me About Divorce that I have already thought about, or even experienced. I laughed at the “you’ll miss his cooking” entry, since she keeps saying that, in awe of my would-be chefness. Via Glenn.