Schedule constraints and no small amount of newcomer drama have gotten in the way of sitting The New Kid down and beginning to go through the book "Alcoholics Anonymous" (AA's Big Book) with him when I had originally planned to. I feel a tremendous sense of urgency to get him started on that.
A recent conversation:
Me: blah blah blah [suggestion] blah blah blah [suggestion] blah blah blah [suggestion].
The New Kid: Yes, but ... blah blah blah ... yes, but ... blah blah blah ... yes, but ... yes, but ... yes, but ...
Me: Ok, Kid, two things. #1, either my rope has gotten much shorter than it used to be, which is entirely possible, or you are burning through it at a much faster rate than usual. Either way, you need to know that, so you don't get blindsided if we reach the end of it, okay?
The New Kid: Oh, uh ... okay.
Me: And #2 -- and this is much more important than #1: It's not that you necessarily have to do things my way, it's that you have to stop doing things your way.
Silence for a moment
The New Kid: Okay, yes, but ...
I hold up my hand
The New Kid: What?
Me: Do you smell that?
The New Kid: What? Smell what?
Me: It smells like ...
I look him in the eye
Me: Burning rope.
For a moment he is baffled, then chagrined, then amused, then annoyed; the expressions flick across his face as quickly as you could thumb through the pages of a magazine. I think to myself what a terrible poker player this boy would be. We chat a bit more.
The New Kid: Well, yeah, sure, but ...
Houston, we have a problem.