Monday, May 30, 2005

Star Wars, Schmar Wars—Our son’s the real deal :)

Our son started out on my favorite televised-science-fiction message boards as the Young Prince (named after the Disney character). When all of us thought that he was going to go into a computer field, he became known there as the Young Tech. After he changed majors in the third academic quarter of his freshman year at college and became a physics major, I renamed him the Young Scientist. Not only is he now majoring in physics, he’s minoring in Japanese (as if he doesn’t have enough studying to do, considering his choice of major). We warned him when he chose physics as his major that he couldn’t rely on either of us for help—personally, I can’t add two and two without a calculator, and the kind of math that’s typically used by a physicist is hardly the same kind of math that’s typically used by a CPA such as his dear old dad. As for his minor in Japanese, my own B.A. is in French, with nine credits of Spanish on the side—when it comes to grammatically-complicated Asian languages with non-Latin alphabets, I have enough trouble with Hebrew.

Here are a couple of stories for your entertainment.

Our son got his first pair of hearing aids when he was only three and a half. He spent several months getting rid of them at every opportunity, throwing them on the floor, stuffing them between the couch pillows, etc. Thank heaven for hearing-aid insurance—he actually managed to ditch a hearing aid on the way home from the daycare person, even though I was with him at the time, and I never did find the thing despite going back and forth over the sidewalk between our apartment buildings at least twice. Then, one fine day, nes gadol hayah po, a great miracle happened here—my son discovered that he could hear the cartoons a lot better when he was wearing his hearing aids. From that moment on, we never had any more trouble getting him to wear them. G-d bless television!!! :)

So there we were, some 16 or so years later, parked in front of the idiot box together, watching a rerun of one of our sci fi favorites, “Stargate: SG1.” It was the episode in which Air Force Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter, astrophysicist, brains of the SG1 team, and resident genius of the Stargate Program as a whole, returned to her alma mater, the U.S. Air Force Academy, to give a physics lecture. And there sat my son, having just finished his third year of college as a physics major, fine-tooth-combing the equations on the board! You’ll be happy to know that he declared that, aside from the error that was spotted by that obnoxious but brilliant cadet whom Colonel Carter later took under her wing, the equations made sense. Not only do I “bless” television, I also bless the producers, directors, writers, and, especially, actress Amanda Tapping, for giving our son such a wonderful, albeit fictional, role model in the person of Lt. Colonel Samantha Carter, astrophysicist, U.S. Air Force.

Lucas, Schmucas—our son is the real wave of the future. Now that he’s entering his fourth year of a five-year program, he’s had to “declare” a specialty within physics, and he’s chosen nanotechnology as his field. Praise the electron microscope and pass the tuition money! :)

Our son started our as the Young Prince, then became the Young Tech, and is now known as the Young Scientist. When he graduates with his B.S. in two more years . . .well, some families have a family physician, but, just to be different, we’re going to have “the Family Physicist.” :)

Here’s a question for the doctors in the (Jewish blogosphere) house with whom I am currently acquainted, namely, dilbert, of , Psycho Toddler ,and Doctor Bean (a contributor to ): If the Young Scientist happens to obtain a Ph.D. in physics at some point in the future, would you have any objections to our calling him “Our Son, the Doctor?” :)

Update (off topic, but what the hey): Congratulations to dilbert, allegedly a guest blogger at, on starting another blog, Check it out, folks!


Blogger PsychoToddler said...

Most definitely :-)

You should have a lot of nachos!

Mon May 30, 10:44:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

". . . nachos." ???!!! Was that a typo, or are *you* being a punster, now? :) I'm a former foreign-language major--all bilingual puns cheerfully groaned at. :)

Tue May 31, 12:02:00 AM 2005  
Blogger tuesdaywishes said...

I'm not a doctor, but if your son EARNS a PhD, by all means call him Doctor. There's thousands of guys using the title "Rabbi" who haven't earned it, and you don't hear the real rabbis complaining.

(I do hear them, but that's part of the deal)

Thu Jun 02, 10:39:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

tuesdaywishes, welcome aboard!

As to whether or not the Young Scientist will earn a Ph.D., time will tell. So far, so good.

Thu Jun 02, 11:28:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Unknown said...

Hey, why not? If he was teaching they'd call him that!!!! I am so happy to hear all these wonderful things Shira!!! Your son is certainly an inspiration!!!!

Mon Jun 06, 02:15:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Doctor Bean said...

absolutely! (and thanks for the link) My wife has a PhD and she worked a lot harder for her degree than I worked for mine.

Tue Jun 14, 07:34:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Doctor Bean said...

Oh, and my bachelor's was in enginerring, so I love math/physics geeks. Sounds like your son and I would get along.

Tue Jun 14, 07:57:00 PM 2005  
Blogger Noam S said...

PhD is certainly a good reason to be called doctor. I actually hate being called doctor by anyone outside of work. Come to think of it, I only want to be called doctor by my patients who are younger than me. Everyone else should use my first name, dilbert.

Thu Jun 16, 09:15:00 AM 2005  
Blogger Shira Salamone said...

Youchers, gotta read my blogger e-mail more often. Sorry I didn't respond sooner.

Dr. Bean, this sort of thing seems to run in the family--there's someone with a bachelor's in engineering on the Punster's side.

Wish I had your wife's brains.

dilbert, next thing, you'll be saying, "I'm not a doctor, but I play one on TV." :)

Fri Jun 17, 12:27:00 PM 2005  

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