Saturday, October 04, 2008

Would ya like to slap a "please" on that before I slap you?

(Alternate title: "No daughter-in-law of mine ...")

OK, so yeah.  I went out in public yesterday (as opposed to scooting out in my sweats, shades, and ratty tee, grabbing my schoolies and running home).

There's a lovely park beside my kids' school and it was an equally lovely day, so the littles and I walked over, fetched the bigs, and they played a bit on the playground.

There was already a family there, a stereotypical C-Town unit: dad, mum, 2 kids (one boy, one girl, natch!), ridiculous little purebred dog, and SUV that seated SEVEN with the tiringly ubiquitous stickers on the back (college team flip-flops/palmetto tree on left and stick-figure family on right with every member even the dog, awwww. NOT).

My five scattered out onto the playgound immediately and I sat on a nearby bridge/toy/thingy that's rarely played on but in the shade.

Almost instantly, the girl, aged about 3, ran afoul of Bulk.  He tried to walk across the same 3 foot wide bridge as she and she SCREAMED at the tops of her lungs and whined piercingly: "Iiiiiiiiiiii was on this!"

Bulk, who has two older sisters, wisely retreated - albeit a bit baffled.

Mom, who looked as if her Zoloft was kicking in nicely, sort of peered into the middle distance.

Dad, however, much in command, was pacing back and forth, cellphone clamped to ear, TALKING IN A VERY LOUD VOICE.  He continued to do this without interruption the entire time they stayed there.  I heard about their friends who were driving down from northern climes and were currently in eastern Virginia and had just stopped to eat and had caught part of some game (football?) on the telly in the restaurant and wow, I hope they make it to the playoffs, etc, etc.

Meantime, the boy was trying earnestly to tell Boy what he should be playing.  Boy was politely talking to him but rebuffing his ideas.  The child was talking about telly shows Boy has never seen (and frankly seem too young for a 5-year-old. He mentioned Barney.)

Anyway, he quickly abandoned Boy for THCTD, who is so social that she happily went along without a clue as to what the boy was talking about.

Problem was, was that the child got more and more aggresive.  He began speaking so loudly he was shouting.  He also had the unnerving habit of leaning right into THCTD's face to speak to her.  He even grasped her arm and pulled her to where he wanted her a few times.

Mom just watched, Dad ignored.

Now THCTD is, heh, no dummy, and she's also a tall, capable gal, so I wasn't afraid this suburban milquetoast was going to bully her, but it did take all of my willpower NOT to micromanage.  At one point they were all playing and Bossy Boy spent the entire time telling everyone in a petulant/cross voice what to do and how to do it.

Cut to Screaming Girl.

She did the rounds whilst everyone else played, and whined and screamed if anyone got in her way or played on anything she wanted.  My crowd just ignored her.  I secretly wished she had encountered Fiver, the 30lb master of screaming-to-get-your-way, on a narrow bridge.  He easily outweighed her and was not much shorter.  It would have been a smackdown.

ANYway, about this time, Screamy appered at my elbow.

Now, I am not about to be ugly to a child unless greatly provoked, especially another person's kid.  So I looked down at her and smiled. The wee cherub, in turn, looked up at me from her nest of entirely playground-inappropriate pink/polka-dotted/frou-frou/tacky/lacy/crapwear-and-hair-accessories and said:

"Can you move? I wan' on dis."

I honestly was so flabbergasted that I got up.

Now, my kids are not perfect by any stretch.  Srsly.  But I do expect them to be polite and respectful and well behaved at all times.

My 3-year-old, Bulk, would not dream of speaking that way to anyone!  If he forgot his 'please', he would still say: "May I get on dis?" in that situation.  But most of all, none of my children would, in a million years, presume to ask an adult to do anything (other than help them)!!!

(Yes, that was worth 3 exclaimation points.)

But brace yourself, it gets better.

Dad, finally gets off the phone. After briefing Mom on a convo that she HAD to have heard, because *I* heard the entire thing to the tiniest detail and I was over 30 feet away, they adjourned, after a brief begging session with their kids ending in a bribe, to their silver Expedition.

We played in peace for a bit.  Ahhhhh.  If only we had one of those playgound thingys here at the house.

Then, just as I was contemplating ringing Bodog and seeing if he was up for meeting us, another huge SUV pulls up (this one was black, but the tacky back window stickers were almost the same).

This one disgorged three lanky girls, a 5th grader, a 2nd grader, and a tall kindergartener dressed, you guessed it, in lace, pink, frou-frou, NOT-play-clothes, crap.

(BTW, I know the exact grades because they were sisters whom Boy knew from school.  They also had awful Western-themed matching names - think Steele,Canyon, and Colt if they'd been boys. *gag*)

(oh, and FWIW, the 2nd grader was wearing a spaghetti tank, miniskirt, and v. high-heeled sandles.  She was clearly athletic but almost fell on those stupid stacked heels and I saw WAY more underpants than should be shown in public.*)

Anyway, Boy knew these three and he homed in on the kindergartener.  Well this little ... person was a piece of work.  At various points whilst she was there, she 1) screamed in his face, 2) asked him questions in a loud, petulant voice, then walked away, and 3) responded in a bored, dismissive fashion when he spoke (at one point she yelled "I do-on't CARE!" after he answered her nicely). Add to this that she cut in front of, pushed, and stepped on all of my other children, whinged loudly at anyone if he/she played where she wanted to play (in a stunning imitation of Screaming Girl - 2 years hence), and totally ignored their caretaker/nanny/mom(?) despite the woman asking her repeatedly to stop risky stunts. (Woman never once asked her to to quit being the wee bitch that she was being.)

I, meanwhile was sat by, alternately fuming and being gobsmacked at these kids' behaviours.  I mean, can you imagine Princess Bitch all grown up?  Her poor, poor husband-to-be.

I finally couldn't stand it any more and instructed Boy, sotto voce,  not to play with her.  Poor HCTD had been trying since they arrived just to get them to speak to her but every girl just ignored her. Bitty and Bulk tried to stay out of the way as all three girls were running, pushy-shovey, climbing on things not meant to be climbed on, etc.

Then Fiver got involved.

Well Princess Bitch decided she wanted to go thru an opening currently occupied by Fiver.  She screamed at him AND tried pushing him and he jutted out his jaw and held his ground. Hey, he's got sisters.

(BTW, they were almost 5 feet off the ground and she was trying to push him OUT of the opening.  I was halfway accross the playground - incoming - at this juncture.)

So I grab Fiver, but he's gripping the bars and glaring up at PB.  I have to prise his fingers off and this takes, what, 4 seconds? Meantime PB is trying to get out the opening by stepping over us and steps on my hand.  I look up at her and she says:

(wait for it)

"Can you move?"

"Please?" I snap, and the look on her face is priceless.  She is stunned.  She stares at me wide-eyed for several seconds as I give her my best I'm-gonna-pick-a-switch-and-wear-your-arse-out look.  She glances nervously at Boy and you can see the connections being made in her self-centered ,over-indulged brain; this is a mom who runs a tight ship, this is a boy who is polite and sweet as a result.

But then her momma's glorious parenting kicks in and she rolls her eyes and says in her best 'whatevrrrrr' voice: "yeah, please" and steps over us onto the climbing thingy.


Now, I've spoken a lot in the past about how I wanted all boys and how nervous I was about raising girls and how I'm not girlyfroufrou and didn't know how I would handle that sort of stuff.  Well, I've learned a lot from my two smart, capable, wee girls including how I won't die if there are *gag* fairy books and *gag* pink frilly shirts in my house.  People are individuals.

But, by golly, one thing I've NOT done is produce two whining, screaming, self-centered, mean-spirited, over-indulged, wastes of two X chromosomes disguised as clothes racks.  My girls are friendly, sweet, and polite.  Oh yeah, they DO whine a bit, and yeah, they do like to get their way every now and then, and yeah, they can be difficult as only us females can be (hence the 'used to sisters' remarks), but they are at heart great little people.  NOT divas, NOT brats, NOT princesses.

girl empowerment t-shirt, not a diva, brat, or princess!

*amount of underpant veiwable in public on any underage female that is acceptable? NONE.

EDITED to correct glaring typos.  Sorry.

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posted by MrsEvilGenius @ 5:52 am   5 comments


At 3:20 pm, Blogger moonduster said...

I completely agree! (And I love the shirt, by the way.)

My girls can be bratty at times, but they are never rude to others and especially not to adults! (They just get whiney with me sometimes, which never works for them.)

At 5:54 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

oh, if only the bratty family and the bitchy family had met! A pick frou-frou battle will have ensued!

Really, why why why do people dress their tiny daughter's in slut-in-training clothes?

When my eldest was a nanny, she once had to take the 9 year old girls side against their grandma that was raising them over the clothes issue. 9 year old wanted pretty prairie girl style dress, granma wanted tiny slut clothes such as you describe. She derided the pretty dress as 'too young' and promoted her choice as 'more grown up'. My girl, at 19 and a half, already figured one good girl raising tip was to encourage littler girl choices as long as reasonable.

Given how well granma's first attempt at parenting worked out, my girl was severely worried about the many-daddied quartet of jail orphans she was helping to raise. Big fancy gated neighborhood or not, those kids chances were slim.

At 6:23 am, Blogger Kathy Harrison Fuller said...

I almost peed myself when I read this! (Not hard after you have five kids I might add!)I have had many an altercation such as this and thought to myself, "Am I an alien." Thank you for reassuring me that I am not alone!

I will write more - I am just too unfocused! LOL PB...

At 3:38 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Someone is making a hell of a lot of money off of those stick figure stickers because I see them on every mini-van and SUV in my city!!!!!
It trips me out on how people are so "open" about themselves by putting things like little pictures of every member of their family on the back of the vehicle they drive.
What happened to a good ole bumpersticker?? What happened to good ole family values? What happened to all these darned kids in America????

At 11:49 am, Blogger Kathy Harrison Fuller said...

Okay I'm usufficiently over my hysterics when reading this post. What happened to all the kids you asked -well Metrosexual Ken and Starbucks Barbie couldn't POSSIBLE pull themselves away from the plastic surgeon/mirror long enough to actually contemplate their legacy. Then I have seen Viagra Grampa Ken and OMG I have to go to the Gap Gramma Barbie that spoil their grandkids and enable their children. URRRGH I just want to remined as to who they think will be paying their bills whne the REALLY get old - oh wait who cares? Live for today for tomorrow pay with Visa!!!


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