Monday, January 12, 2015

What Danger Dan has taught us

Last year this time, our Danger Dan journey began when the first book was published. It was a momentous event for Lesley-Anne and me, to say the least.

Exactly a year later, the final book of the series is out! Danger Dan Creates the Ultimate Utama Uproar will hit bookstores probably from mid-January. Since this is the fifth book, the excitement on seeing the printed work wasn't as exhilarating as the first time. In fact, Lesley-Anne was more expectant about starting the new school year. (Sometimes, I feel like our roles are reversed - me the giddy, heady schoolgirl and she, the pragmatic, no-nonsense one.) Still, seeing the final book out felt quite surreal to me. Did we really have a book series published?

So much has happened over the past year...and Danger Dan was a big part of it. Book launches, speaking engagements, etc - and more than just being part of an exciting project, I believe they have been invaluable in developing Lesley-Anne's psyche and confidence. How so? Well, quite by accident, the Danger Dan experience has given her a glimpse of the "real" world and shown her that the education journey is just one part of life. There is a whole different set of experiences waiting to be had outside of school. So even though this is her 'A' level year, she's not single-mindedly obsessed about the exams, as some kids might be.

I need to qualify that as parents, we have always stressed this point - that exams and results aren't everything and she already knows it. But knowing something in a superficial way can sometimes seem like a platitude aimed at quelling a fear of the unknown. Nothing beats the knowledge that comes from having your own experience reinforce what you know in theory. That sort of understanding comes from deep in your gut and is usually accompanied by a very comforting sense of security.

I think that's what has happened. Because of Danger Dan, Lesley-Anne's self-assurance has been boosted and we're happy and grateful for that. She still works crazy hard, of course, but whatever the results of the 'A' levels, she knows they will not define her, and that goes a long way towards relieving some of the pressure and anxiety.

And in a special commemoration of sorts, Andre has featured Danger Dan in a Minecraft roller coaster he built. Andre has always insisted that he's not creative (a mistaken self-belief I've tried to dispel for a long time). Then he created this roller coaster that completely blew me away, especially since he only started playing Minecraft three months ago.

Pardon a mother's bias but I thought it was a brilliant visual treat (even though in real life, nobody would ride such a coaster - there are free falls!) So much thought and details went into it. He also chose and added the music for the video. I hope you will take five minutes to view the video and if possible, like or leave an encouraging comment here (on the Youtube page) so Andre will finally believe what a creative little guy he is :)


Shannon said...

Great job, Andre!

monlim said...

Thanks, Shannon!

Unknown said...


I esp. love the warning signs that you have at the start. Created the suspense on how we always feel more afraid in the q to the roller coaster ride than the ride itself.

Hwee Chin

monlim said...

Hwee Chin: Haha, true! Thanks!

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