Opinion: Hashing out the summer agenda

Doo and I recently held a family meeting to hammer out the details for a homicide-free summer. Our four children were invited to share their thoughts, and as expected, the biggest sticking point was over the Xbox. Our boys argued that since it’s summer, they should be able to do whatever they want, including wasting weeks at a time sniping virtual zombies. We felt it might lead to serial killer status. Decision? Two hours max a day. Suck it, kids!

Another bone of contention was television. Again, our two boys spearheaded the debate. Essentially they felt that if they couldn’t watch at least a half-day’s worth of “Family Guy,” they would never know true happiness. We rebutted with something called a “book.” Bottom line? One hour a day, plus they have to participate in the library’s reading program. I’ll certainly take the free ice cream if they don’t want it.

Also in the plan, the reinstatement of the “I’m Bored” jar, a repository for the dollar fines handed out to anyone muttering any derivative of the word “boring.” Proceeds will go to an end-of-summer Dairy Queen bonanza, and to prevent a Bud Light Jar phenomenon, the perp will be assigned some degrading task, like scrubbing the basement toilet. Don’t mess with Mom!

And once again, to further enhance this summer’s salt mine experience, “Amish Day” will occur weekly. It was proposed unwittingly three years ago by our then 10-year-old son who, at the aforementioned decision to limit electronic interaction, cried “I’m not going all Amish!” Should have kept your mouth shut Andrew, for you will indeed go Amish. No video games, computers or television for one whole day. They must use their imaginations and find old-fashioned forms of amusement. It may not work, but their discomfort should prove highly entertaining. Moi-ha-ha!

So the chore chart is up and rockin’, and the forced family game night schedule (“You will have fun, damn it!”) is in full swing. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that our careful planning will result in a blissful summer vacation. And good luck to you, my friends! Peace out.