Gentle Bamboo Solutions

Parents and omniscience


There comes a point in every child’s life when they realise that their parents do not know everything. That the parents are not omniscient. That the parent’s knowledge is limited.

It takes a while for the child to grasp this concept. Since the child believes that everything it knows has been taught by the parent, it is difficult to fathom that the parent might not know everything. That the parent is still figuring stuff out for themselves is a shock.

Hopefully, that is the beginning of a journey when the child starts to chart some of it’s life’s path by himself/herself, or to look beyond the parent to learn. Usually, this happens in teenage.


With my son, it is happening as he turns six. Some of his friends and cousins have attended a course on solving the Rubik’s Cube. They can arrange the cubes faces to the same colour in a minute or two.

The Rubik’s cube is a puzzle that can be solved in seconds if you know the algorithms. If you don’t know the algorithms, you can spend your entire life figuring it out and not make an inch of progress.

My son excitedly bought a cube last week, and has been pestering me to teach him how to solve it. For the life of me, I can’t figure it out. I’ve seen videos, downloaded pdfs and installed apps. The damn thing is still a mystery.

My son cannot believe, cannot even fathom, that a 7 year old kid can do something with ease that his all-knowing father is struggling with.

In my defense, I’m working 2-3 hours a day to learn it. Not to prove anything to myself but to show to him that I’m still worthy of him. But I’ve not made much headway. I’m not the easily-giving-up kind, but boy am I tempted to throw this bloody cube away. I’ve even thought of "accidentally" breaking it, and then saying sorry.

I’m watching the first 3 mins of the same 10 min video 20 times a day, and feeling like an idiot that I still don’t get it.

Anyway, this is how my new year is going. How’s yours?

Stuck on R U R’ U’,