At some point in the past 24 hours, Max (the 12-y.o. lad whose rearing is partly my responsibility) removed his booming headphones long enough to send his father an e-mail informing him that rap is a venerable tradition, dating back to the medieval Scots and their “flyting.” The lad even supplied some proof texts: see here, or here, or here.
Every modern dad knows the Book of Ecclesiastes by heart. No modern dad will allow any teachable moment to pass untutored by the past. “Oh yea?” mutters Max’s modern dad, “Medieval Scots? Hah! It’s time we spoke of the Unferþ-Beowulf maþelodaþon my son!” (Er, ok, try lines 499-606 from here or, even better, here).
Max’s dad is already thumbing through his collections of Norse mythologies when he notices that his charge has restored his aural intake apparatus to the electronic cups wrapped around his growing head.
What Max’s dad recognizes, but will never understand, is the systemic risk that his timing may be way off.