May 23, 2012

Bad Parent Confessions

A long hot summer stretches before us. Tomorrow is Crash's last day of preschool, then I get to spend ninety fun-filled days entertaining him and his siblings. Obviously, some of them are better at entertaining themselves - and he does a good job of that if television or video games are involved.

The last several weeks we have had an ongoing battle about the mountains of toys that fill his room and a corner of the living room. His cries of boredom are met with my replies of, "If there is nothing in this house you want to play with, we need to give it all to someone else who would love to have new toys".

Then we escalate to crying or storming off, but recovery is quick and he is soon back to begging for XBox or Wii time. I want to crush the damn things with my car.  But then I remember that I have no chance of showering in peace, or taking an important phone call, without them.

Last night was the annual strings concert for The Princess. She plays cello, one of three in the third grade, the rest of the class plays violins. The school requires all second through fifth graders to participate in the strings program. Each class played two songs. There were two bonus songs that kids could memorize to play as a group. There are two extra-curricular strings groups, they each played two songs. That is fourteen songs total. Let's say 35 minutes of screeching and squeaking. I missed the concert last year and left with an all new respect for those members of my family that did attend last year, but still had the courage to return again this year. It took everything I had not to bust out laughing. I love my kid, but that was easily the most spectacularly horrible performance I have ever sat through.

Returning home after the concert, I noticed there was a Ranger's baseball schedule on the refrigerator. One that was topped by a real estate agent's card. I had seen a stack of these promotional card/schedules at preschool, but chose not to pick one up. Just as I chose not to pick up any other parent-owned business promotional items. I think it is nice that the school offers a place for people to shill for their business. On occasion, there is a card or coupon that interests me and I will grab it. Every few weeks the school allows some mom to set up shop in the foyer, with the headline that a portion of their sales will be donated back to the school. That is well and good, but I haven't yet needed a rhinestone encrusted baseball cap, or a rhinestone encrusted cross T-shirt, or rhinestone encrusted flip-flops. I still struggle with that merchant in the temple connotation when anything is sold in a church.

Back to the point - while I really don't mind that parents can offer their goods and services at school, I do have a problem with things given to my kid with the express intent to influence me.  When the preschool director allows, or instigates, putting someone's promotional items into my child's folder and in his backpack...I think it crosses a line. Just like the asshole parents that use the school directory for their LinkedIn connection requests and direct mail offers. So this Ranger's schedule is nice, except for the real estate ad and photo of a mom from preschool who is anything but nice in person. And I like the convenience of it, but don't want to look at snotty witch's face in my kitchen until October. So I did what all upstanding role model parents would do. I took a Sharpie to her picture, blacking out a tooth, adding facial hair and some horns. Can't keep my inner 10-year old down.

1 comment:

CenTexTim said...

"...then I get to spend ninety fun-filled days entertaining him and his siblings"

Shiners. Lots and lots of Shiners...

Actually, when our kids were that age I started many a day with coffee and Kahlua.