Sometimes we don't realize the screwed up things our parents used to do to us when we were little until we are much older. I have finally reached the age where I am remembering just how big of an asshole my Dad used to be to me.¼/p>

When I was younger, my dad would always come up with new andcreative ways to avoid ever having to do anything with me/make me shut up. Oneof his most effective techniques was the point system. Every time I didsomething sweet, which could be anything from getting an A on my report card todoing a cartwheel, he would award me an arbitrary number of points. I don'tknow when he started this, but I do know that it was never clearly establishedwhat it actually meant for me when I won points. All I know is that when Iearned points I got really excited and dreamed about all the points I couldhave someday if I kept doing sweet things. It was in this way that he made medo the things that he wanted me to do. I will give you an typical example todemonstrate how the point system worked:

¼o:p>

Krishna: Daddy, come outside and throw a ball with me!

Dad: Not now, Daddy is tired and he wants to play Tetris.

Krishna: But daddy, you said yesterday that today you wouldplay with me if I didn't say anything for two whole hours, and I didn't!

Dad: Uhhh…. Hey Krishna, you wanna earn some points?

Krishna: Fuck yeah!

Dad: I'll give points if you…. run 15 laps around the park.

Krishna: OK!

(2.5 hours later)

Dad: Krishna, do you still want to throw a ball or do youjust want to take a nap.

Krishna: I'm really tired from running daddy, I want to takea nap.

Dad: Good job! You earned 200 points today Krishna. Now payattention. For tomorrow, every hour after you wake up that you don't ask me todo something, I'll give you another 10 points.

¼o:p>

I remember the day I realized that I had been collectingpoints my entire life and had not redeemed them for anything nor really everunderstood what their value was. When I presented my father with this question,the conversation went something like this:

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Krishna: Hey dad, you know those points you are alwaysgiving me, what are they for?

Dad: What do you mean? You earn them for doing things Ithink are sweet.

Krishna: Yeah dad, I know that. My question is, what arethey for, and is there any sense in the way you distribute them?

Dad: (Pauses Tetris and looks at me) They are for whateveryou want Krishna.

Krishna: So they are like money?

Dad: Yeah, sure.

Krishna: So is every point a dollar or something?

Dad: (long pause) What are you thinking about?

Krishna: I want an N64.

Dad: No, you can't use it for that.

Krishna: Why not? I think I have earned enough points to buyan N64 by now. I have like 100,000!

Dad: Why do you want more video games? We already haveTetris, Tetris 2, and I just got you Spell Checker for your gameboy. You don'tneed more videogames, they aren't good for your brain (unpauses Tetrisand continues playing).

Krishna: So the points are useless, and you have just beenusing them to make do your bidding this whole time? All those times I playedthe quiet game, all those times I ordered Rooty Tooty Fresh and Fruity Jr. atIHOP because it was on the kids menu and they wouldn't serve it to you, and allthose cartwheels I did were for nothing!?

Dad: (pauses tetris and another long pause) Wanna go toApplebee's?

Krishna: Fuck yeah!

Dad: OK then, we'll leave in 10 minutes. Daddy has to finishhis game.

¼o:p>

And it was in this way that my father controlled me for themajority of my life up until young adulthood, although he still gets out of alot of shit with my by taking me to Applebee's.