This week, my kids started at their new schools. It made me think about the role of a parent in that situation. I read one time that Eminem would go visit his daughter's school from time to time and that when he did he made sure he wasn't seen as big rap star but just as "Hailie's dad". In that situation, he didn't want to be Eminem as the world knew him.
Got me thinking. He's on the radio. I'm on the radio. But his presence on the radio is kind of the opposite of mine. Maybe I should go the opposite direction of him and be as much like Eminem as possible in the school.
So when I dropped the kids off I made sure to launch into angry violent rhymed tirades about all sorts of people. I made sure to get a really short haircut and glower menacingly. I made sure to bring in a reluctant Dr. Dre to the school (easier to do than you'd think) to be my mentor. And I made absolute certain to sign on with director Curtis Hanson to film a tense gritty drama based on my hard scrabble upbringing (harder than you'd think it being Federal Way). Finally, I made sure to disappear from public view for several years and make people occasionally wonder what the hell ever happened to me.
I think it made a big impression on both teachers and parents.