It takes a spot of courage to stand up tall and a bit of derring-do to rise when you fall

Wednesday, September 14, 2005


This wasn't a recent event, but it's been bugging me all over again. (Let it go, I say; let it go):

I'm at Target waiting in line, and there's a lady in front of me with a boy who's probably only five. In her basket is Target brand stroganoff (or something equally unappetizing, but hey---it's cheap), Target brand juice, some other food item---maybe bread; I can't remember. Anyway, a few paltry items. And budsy boy, while standing there in line, notices a movie---clearly rated R, some violent-looking, evil-type movie, and demands to have it. The conversation goes something like this:

boy: I want this. I haven't seen this yet.
mom: you don't need it. we have movies like this at home.
boy, raised voice: But I haven't seen it. I want it.
mom, sighing: I don't know why you want to watch movies like this.
(It's completely out of her hands, clearly).

I've got a huge question mark hanging over my head at this point, so big that I'm surprised no one has noticed and pointed it out. I think I've missed something here. Maybe he's not really five. Maybe he's twenty-five and just really really small. Maybe she's three and just really really big. I mean, who's the mom here?? And why has he, at only five (unless he's 25 and traveling incognito), seen ANY movie resembling the one clutched in his hands?? I'm really struggling with this, my question mark clanging in confusion. I'm considering the sad state of affairs before me when I see to my disbelief that she is taking food items out. of. her. bag. True, several of them were really only psuedo-food items, but surely a little more nutrional than guns and blood and guts? She's taking out the juice and processed boxed item and putting in the flipping movie. I know for a fact that the food she now has is probably going to come to a grand total of about $4. She's checking out now, and I watch as she counts out $25 in bills. She paid almost $20 for garbage that has no value whatsoever, no matter what age Budsy is. She spent $20 of what is quite evidently not money easily come by to give her small child something that A) he'd demanded; B) was clearly inappropriate; and C) something she could ill-afford. I could hardly keep quiet.

This bothered me---and clearly still does---on so many levels. But mostly I just kept thinking about this five-year-old watching all that violence, clearly a common practice, and wondered how it was that people can't figure out why kids are so unhappy these days. Why they're becoming so violent and out of control. Why they're so much more disrespectful and aggressive. Gee, I wonder. The great news is that Budsy and plenty more like him are going to school alongside MY children who are still curled into fetal position, waiting to be born, compared to kids these days. Is all innocence lost?? I don't want to believe so.

But folk like Target mom and Budsy make it hard to keep the faith.


Blogger bryan torre said...

you're clearly not giving your kids what they want. what's wrong with you, anyway?


1:02 AM, September 15, 2005

Blogger jay are said...

It takes a lot of practice. Their recent requests have been: a swimming pool, a sports car, and a drum set. Hmmm. My kids clearly were born into the wrong family!

7:13 AM, September 15, 2005


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