Once you’re a parent, you leave your brain at the door.

24 07 2009

Today, I went to the Columbus Zoo. Now that’s a madhouse in of itself. Parents pushing strollers of children eating candy, groups on field trips doing the field trip thing with their hyper overexcited children, the smart schools and their children, and the adults who went just because, hey, animals are cool.

Now, I’m going to upload video of the aquarium for illustrative purposes. I took this thinking I’d get some nice aquarium video and put new music behind the track so I don’t have to listen to the children and people talking and save myself the nine dollars of buying one of those stupid videos. But this will surve that purpose as well. Except for one of the children screaming bloody murder.  Which thankfully was right after filming.

Now, I have nothing wrong with children. Children are our future. They will make this world. For better or for worse. I even want to spawn some day, if just one or two children. I can’t handle more than that, I know myself too well.

But what part of parentage says that when you’re at a place (say a resturaunt, or a very famous zoo) says that you sit back with the stroller as your child presses their face into the glass and smudge it with their cotton candy sticky fingers. Especially while they’re screaming their head of that the (insert animal here) was doing something interesting. Even if it was just coming close to the glass, or stared in their general direction.

Stop letting them touch the glass. If they bang on the glass it upsets the animals. If you take pictures of animals that are nocturnal WITH YOUR FLASH ON, the animals do not like that, it hurts them physically much like when someone flashes you with a camera flash in the dark, only 100 times worse. There is a reason for the signs.

I was actually up against the glass taking pictures of the tiger and as I was turning around I elbowed some kid in the eye. His eye was just at elbow level. I’ve almost stepped on/ran over/knocked over and whatever combination, of so many children under waist high, today that I was wanting to kick them out of my way.  It’s not even funny now. All I hear are little cries of “hey ___ watch out!” in that baby tone by the parents. Not to mention how many toddlers not looking where they’re going run smack full speed into my legs.

Around toddler years, the parents look like they’re just glassed over. Those who do speak, speak only in baby talk. I understand that children have beaten you down, but you don’t have to let them get away with murder. Back in my day, a stern look, a harsh command, or a threat always worked. It’s called, you’re the adult they’re the child, and You Mean Business.

If billy junior is running around and pretending to be a scary lion and jumping at people, yes, telling him if he does not behave he would not see the (Insert favorite animal here) today and they would just go home. And do it. Oh and if you have a teenager who spends the day stuffed in their iphone/ipod/mp3 player/phone, etc, take it away from them. The most important person for them to be talking to is you right now. And while you’re at it, turn it off.  If they really wanted to speak with their friends they should have brought them along.

These are universal rules, they apply everywhere you take your darling mini-me.

This also applies to movie theaters. I went to see the movie “Earth” the other day. I know that children like to talk,  but please, not while the movie is playing. And tell your prescious snowflake to stop stomping on the popcorn they threw down on the ground earlier in a fit. Tell them to sit down or remove them from the theater if they can’t. If they figet at home while watching a video on ‘family video night’ or what have you, then dont’ take them to a movie. Plain and simple. Also, stop taking them to rated R movies. Saying they won’ t understand it doesn’t make it that less graphic.

Resturaunts are bad too. Tell your children to bring one item to do or play with at the resturaunt. Teach them what we learned in kindergarden. Remember how recess was loud time and coloring was quiet time? Tell them that sitting at a resturaunt is quiet time. Teach them the silent game (who can be silent the longest?). And while we’re at it, if they’re toddlers. I’ve been a buser for a resturaunt. Don’t leave little piles of whatever food junior didn’t eat. I’m tired of cleaning up that shit.

There is a product I’m going to mention. It’s a plastic placemat.

(http://tinyurl.com/nq8pc7 )

To keep it in place there are sticker strips on the bottom that you just apply it to a table. STOP USING THESE IN RESTURAUNTS! The sticky part pratically hermetically seals to the table. We only use a mild cleaning solution and water and hand towels to wash your tables off. It takes a lot to get every bit of that stuff off. It takes 10 minutes. If the child can’t behave in a resturaunt don’t take them to one, plain and simple.

For all the parents of children who actually understand above topics. Thank you for making whatever I did where your children are a nice evening. I stiffened up when you came in with them in tow, but if they were quiet (minimally) and did not bother me, thanks, if I wasn’t already thanking you.

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