Tuesday, May 28, 2013

'Candace' The Menace

Summer break has started for my son and guess what song he sang on the very first morning of his summer break? --- The Phineas and Ferb theme song.

For those who are unfamiliar with this show, the first stanza has these lines:  

"There's a hundred and four days of summer vacation
And school comes along just to end it
So the annual problem for our generation
Is finding a good way to spend it...."

I wasn't too happy the first time I noticed that Noah was getting hooked on this show.  I thought that Phineas and Ferb seemed like kids who were up to no good and that my son would just end up learning nothing but mischief from these characters.  That was all before I started really paying attention to the show though.  No, I'm not here to endorse this show or anything like that.  I don't want anyone thinking I'm encouraging kids to build rocket ships and submarines in your backyard without your knowledge (although admittedly that would be pretty cool, don't you think?).   

What strikes me most about this show is not so much the crazy antics of these siblings but the fact that to me, the more central character is really Candace, the sister.  She's the one who is completely obsessed with getting Phineas and Ferb 'busted'.  She's completely fixated (actually, consumed would probably be the most fitting word here) on exposing her brothers to their mother.  The boys neither hurt people, nor do anything morally challenged.  If anything their only fault is their low threshold for boredom, hence their crazy ideas to quench their thirst for adventure.

Candace Flynn
But I can't help but feel sorry for Candace because while her brothers are ALWAYS having the time of their lives (building a restaurant, reaching outer space with their own rocket ship, inventing an invisibility tool, etc.), she's stuck in her obsession and ends up just following them around with the hope of exposing them to their parents. She doesn't realize that she's missing out on all the fun she could have herself because instead of living her own life and paying attention to what she has, she spends an insane amount of time figuring out how to get her brothers found out, even when they're not even intentionally hiding what they're doing!  The truth is, Phineas and Ferb couldn't care less about what Candace thinks, says, or does.  They're really just doing their own thing.

I hope my son realizes this valuable lesson from this show, in this life.  We all need this same reminder, don't we?  Sometimes we spend more time looking at what other people are doing, how others are living their lives, gauging how far they've gone and comparing them to us and where we are and what we do or what we have.  All this is energy misspent.  When we do that, we are making others the 'STARS' in our own lives, giving them the major role in our own personal life stories where we should be the lead.  A runner who keeps looking at his opponents to see where he is relative to them, instead of focusing his energies on his own performance alone, will never win the race.  It only slows him down.  It's all a waste of energy.

The same goes for people who spend a lot of energy trying to put other people down, criticizing others, finding fault in them or waiting for their missteps.  The best and only effective way to deal with these sad people is to ignore them. These 'Candace' creatures want to be noticed and heard, and more importantly need to get a life.  If you have a 'Candace' hovering in your life, just ignore them because it's not your job to find a life for them.  Paying attention to them is a way of rewarding them.  It's also a waste of your energies and would only deplete your happiness and suck the fun out of your journey.  Learn from Phineas and Ferb.  Keep focusing on your 'projects', enjoy your adventures and keep being awesome!

Have you had a 'Candace' in your life?  How did you manage the situation?  Or do you sometimes feel you have your own 'Candace tendencies'?

1 comment:

  1. I've had several Candaces in my life hovering over me and cramping my style, so to speak. They were horrid blobs shadowing me, ones I couldn't get rid of, and who alienated other friends. Candaces are not healthy to have around and they are a waste of energy - theirs and yours. So why can't a kid get rid of them? Well, even adults have problems because they stick like glue. So you are sometimes forced to be nasty to them, which may go against your nature.


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