We are firm believers of the proverb “Spare the rod and spoil the child”, contrary to popular beliefs against using physical punishment in today’s world of childrearing. It has proven to work in our family nevertheless, because we only use the cane sparingly for ‘serious offences’. The effect has been achieved; now that the kids are older, we are brandishing the cane less and less frequently. Once in while, reminders of the “Wonder Cane” are useful.
The kids were shouting across their rooms during bedtime, chatting loudly with each other instead of turning in after a long day of playing and little sleep. They had been watching Marvel superheroes on the newly launched Disney XD channel 310 on Starhub at their grandparents’ place. Superheroes became the topic of their loud, bedtime-delaying conversation. For a good 10 minutes, the conversation went like this (with increasing volume):
Matthew: MeiMei, who is the superhero that shoots webs?
Matthew: Who is the superhero who shoots fire from his hand? Thor, Ironman or Captain America?
Megan: Erm, Ironman!
Matthew: Correct. Who is the superhero who has a shield can throw and come back?
Megan: Captain Am-er-merica!
Matthew: Who is the superhero who shoots lightning from his hammer?
Guffaws resounded around the house, from both their rooms.
With our limit for in-bed-already-but-unwilling-to-quieten-down-and-sleep-let’s-see-how-far-can-we-flaunt-parents’-rules reached, the Man said in his usual booming voice:
The Man: Who will appear with the cane if there is any more noise?
Immediately, the noise stopped completely. We were taken aback, expecting the kids to reply the question, or try their luck with some noises. But only silence greeted us. Total silence.
We waited; sure the kids will resume the ruckus after a few minutes’ break. Still, silence. Mission accomplished!
In a way, we were glad the kids have grown up. They knew they had broken house rules, and the consequences of their actions. Perhaps, in the near future, we can retire the Wonder Cane for good. For now, the Wonder Cane has made my list of favourite Superheroes, for his presence alone keeps the villians at bay…