Thinking & Feeling

“The world is a tragedy to those who feel, but a comedy to those who think.” Horace Walpole

Monday, 18 January 2010

Cunning Quinn

I have a feeling Quinn is going to get far in the world. He knows how to play the game and how to get what he wants and/or needs in a situation. He makes the rules, and if he can't he figures out how to make them work for him.

He is Cunning, Smart, Manipulative even.

Cunning: adj 1. crafty and shrewd; sly cunning as a fox 2. made with or showing skill or cleverness; ingenious n 1. craftiness, esp in deceiving; slyness 2. cleverness, skill, or ingenuity "the art or process of gaining the advantage in situations by means of crafty or ingenious ploys."

Manipulative: Skillful in influencing or controlling others to your own advantage.

1. Characterized by sharp quick thought; bright. 2. Amusingly clever; witty. 3. Canny and shrewd in dealings with others. 4. Astute, as in business; clever or bright.

1. Characterized by keen awareness, sharp intelligence, and often a sense of the practical. 2. Disposed to artful and cunning practices; tricky.

2 Examples follow:

1. On Friday morning I woke up to a knock on my bedroom door. I sleepily asked who was there, to find out it was a bright and breezy Quinn bringing me coffee in bed. He was all neatly dressed for school. He cheerily bid me good morning and gave me a hug, then said he was off to finish making breakfast and their lunch for school. WOW!

A while later he came back and asked if I needed help with anything? I asked him to please check on my Jasmine plant outside my bedroom window which was lying on the ground. He investigated, diagnosed the problem, and got a hammer to drive the plant's supporting stake back into the ground. It is now standing proud and tall again. When it was time to leave I discovered everything was already in the car. What a pleasure!

Then as I was about to head for the car Quinn approached me. 'Um, mom. So can I have some money for the tuck-shop today...?'. HA!

Truth is I had told him earlier in the week that I may give him money one day that week, and he certainly did his bit to compel me to think that he deserved it. So was he just being nice or was I expertly worked over? And is there even a difference? I mean do people perhaps only do nice things for their own personal gain? - EVEN if that gain is only to make you friendlier towards them?

2. We were going through the extra mural timetable for the term and choosing the activities the boys would do. I asked Quinn if he was doing chess this year. He did it in Grade 1 and 2 and was GOOD at it - in fact in Grade 1 we told Grandpa that he had just learned to play and he convinced Grandpa to play a game with him. Grandpa was chatting and drinking whiskey, but Quinn nearly NEARLY beat him! It was a very close shave. Grandpa was suitably shocked and impressed.

Chess is a good way to still and focus Quinn's mind. I think it is beneficial for him and he has a natural aptitude for it. He doesn't REALLY want to do it though. But, instead of getting into a debate about it with me, he came up with this idea. He said, 'Ok I'll verse* you in a chess game and if I win I don't have to do chess, if you will I'll do it.' I decided that was fair enough. I mean I did chess at school and am pretty good myself. I don't expect it will be an easy game at all though!

So what do you think?
Shrewd, cunning, smart? Or devious and manipulative?

* Do your kids also say 'verse' meaning challenge or compete with? I can only think they get it from hearing Team a vs. (versus) Team B and so they think that's the verb.


  1. He sounds like a smart kid that knows what works for him.

  2. oooh he's got you sussed. knows eactly which buttons to push to impress you.

    its nice that. the self confidence he has.

  3. Cameron says verse - drives me nuts cos we correct him but still South Africa verse England :)

    LOL I think Quinn is being smart. He is using the skills he has to get what he wants.

  4. sounds like you have a clever boy on your hands :)

  5. Damien also used "verse" in that way.
    So was it a good game? Who won?