02/05/2006 - 8:06 p.m.


Somewhere along the line, my daughters decided that public places could be owned. I really wish I knew what we did to give them this mistaken impression. Perhaps it came from my declarations that, while I care little for most possessions, I am territorial. But I only said that to distinguish the difference between my very mild annoyance if you borrow my sweater without asking and my much, much more active annoyance if you sit in my seat at breakfast and refuse to move. None of my territorial "prerogatives" extend outside my own house (or office) so I'm not sure how it got generalized to high school theater programs, to summer programs, or to camp but it did. I just wish they'd give it up.

Yes, some of you, most of whom are younger children, could tell me that of course Day does not want her sometimes-larger-than-life older sister to come to camp where she would be in the shadow. I understand that. I also understand that I told Kat, over and over, when she complaining of Day coming onto her territory at the high school theater department and outshining her that the place was public territory. I also understand that, when Day decided that the summer theater program that Kat had attended looked like fun, I said the same thing. Now that Kat wants to work at the summer camp at which Day is a junior staffer, my answer to Day has to be the same: the summer camp is public territory.

It may be an interesting summer. Luckily, if it works the way it looks like it might work, they will both be away from home if fighting breaks out. I really hope both of them accommodate each other because I would hate for either of them (or both of them) to appear immature to their employers. They both need to care about the job more than they worry about each other. They need to learn that they will both win if they make it a success for both of them. Sometimes what you ideally wish for or want is irrelevant. Life is what it is.

This whole situation seems to cause FogieKnight less stress than me. Looking at him makes me suspect that my reaction may be part of the problem. I learned long ago that the girls tended to get along better at times when I cared less about it.

And so, I am washing my hands of it. If they end up the same place, they will have to remember that all of us have a tendency to make our worst fears come true and that if they treat each other badly, both of them will be diminished by it.

Let the summer games begin. (Sigh.)

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