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Sunday, October 31, 2021

Hereditary Habits

No way I'm weighing in on the perennial nature vs. nurture debate. But, when did you last consider your most ingrained hereditary habits? And which of those habits have you had the most trouble shaking? I'm not asking anyone to step into the confession booth and reveal any heavy stuff. But surely there are at least a few mundane things you are certain you inherited from your parents that are safe to share here. 

I've been driving my wife to distraction for over forty-three years - and doing the same to my daughter for thirty-two - via my undeniably hereditary habit of turning off the lights in any room, hallway, or foyer as soon as it becomes vacant, Truth be told, sometimes my hand involuntarily reaches for the light or lamp switch even sooner than that. There is only one possible explanation for this reflex - my father did the same thing for as long as I can remember. 

Dad has been gone for twenty-four years. But as long as I'm still standing and there are lights to be turned off, his spirit remains fully intact. How about you? Which hereditary habit(s) won't let you go? How much do you want to let any of them go?

Shoutout to my sister, who reminded me of this hereditary habit earlier today when she asked me to turn the light off in her bathroom seconds after she'd left it. 



  1. my hereditary habit I hope to inherit from you is your silly routines / joking with strangers to make them laugh.

    1. Alison; I'm pleased you've decided to carry on with my "silly routines and joking with strangers.." Because given the range of my other stuff you could have selected, you wisely opted for some benign habits, ones that maybe bring some laughter in the world. Not a bad legacy for the old man.

  2. Good morning, Pat. Not only have I inherited similar traits from my parents, my father mostly - I am a King of turning off lights all the time and mostly well before people are finished needing them - but I've noticed that my kids have started doing some of the things I do. Maybe not so much with the lights or the like, but I can safely say that my daughter has certainly picked up my habit (not sure if that's the correct way to phrase it) of smart ass retorts to some comments. Thankfully she will only do that with me as I don't think most would get the humor. But she and I definitely do. And she will usually conclude by saying 'Well, I am your daughter'. And both my son and daughter both seem to be more emotional, like me, and not so much their mother. A proud father.
    I am glad to see what Alison wrote as I tend to joke a lot as well. Sometimes to make others laugh or, mostly, to make uncomfortable situations a little more comfortable. Am I always successful? ... well...

    Be well,

    1. Hey Bob; Thanks for the comment and for noticing what Alison contributed above. Glad we share both the "light" thing as well as being "more emotional..", although the latter comes with a cost sometimes, right? As far as being "always" successful with humor, who could make that claim? And what harm is done by trying to make others laugh? What's the alternative anyway? Being humorless? No thanks.