Posts filed under ‘parenting’

school bus

i was caught behind a school bus on my way to work this morning. normally, i don’t mind; i believe that getting kids to school is very important for their education and development into pimply faced adolescents. i often bang on about poor education and parenting being the reasons why philadelphia is the murderous cess pool that it is.

however, my opinion of education changed very quickly this morning. for two miles, a diesel burning cheese bus stopped at nearly every house, picking up a single child, who would languidly drift up the steps to the bus. meanwhile, a queue of cars stretching all the way into idaho was quickly building up behind the bus. people too far behind to see the flashing warning lights of the bus were honking, and in retaliation, drivers in front honked back. this woke up every family within a two block radius, disturbed the mating of indigenous birds, and all the carbon dioxides from the unmoving cars made a hole in the ozone layer the size of australila.

i took a school bus all throughout grade school and every morning, me and my sister would walk ten blocks, about half a mile uphill (both ways), to the neighborhood bus pickup, where about three other kids would wait for bus-driver jose to come in our clattering yellow school bus. while we waited, we chatted and played red light-green light-1-2-3. it was always fun and i believe i learned more about playing, patience, and friendship from waiting for the bus than i did from actually attending grade school.

i simply cannot fathom while today’s children idly wait for the school bus to come from their own doorsteps, within sight and earshot of their fellow students who live two houses down. it is not like they are in wheelchairs and crutches and need assistance to walk. sure, all the kids looked obese, bi-polar, and anemic but that’s all the more reason to have them walk a few blocks to a bus stop where all the children in the neighborhood can be picked up all at the same time. this would relieve congestion on the roads, bring the passenger pigeon back from extinction, and raise up a generation of fitter, more happy children. instead, sending our children to school by bus is teaching them that door to door car service is the norm, that their lives are more important than the lives of the other motorists on the road, and that being lazy is a good thing.

on the other hand, this is still better than the alternative, which happens to be my bete noire: harried soccer moms in honda minivans carting their brood to school while talking on their cell phones.

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November 30, 2007 at 4:22 pm Leave a comment

on apples and nuts

a good friend who is an elementary school teacher recently told me about a parent that he had to deal with. this mother forbade the school from giving her child anything with apples in it, including juice and sauce, because every one knows apples are the devil’s plaything. she requested that her daughter be given only water, milk, and vegetable juice. also on her black list were cheese goldfish snacks, because apparently, her daughter is too thick not to gorge herself on them.

well of course she’s going to gorge herself on goldfish snacks if all you feed her is water, milk, and vegetable juice. water is for plants, vegetable juice belongs in a bloody mary, and i’m completely surprised that milk, with all the hormones dairy cows are pumped up with, made it to this mother’s ok-to-put-inside-my-daughter list. most likely, the daft mother believes that milk comes from a cow named bessie that lives on a quiet farm with a red silo, and is lovingly milked by farmer joe who wears denim overalls and a straw hat.

my theory is that this mother believes that this is what good parenting is; eliminating from her child’s life any thing remotely tasty, fun, and exciting because pesticides will rot their gums, sports will disintegrate all tendons and bones, and playing in the mud will lead only to anthrax. snowball fights cause hypothermia and frostbite, video games turn their brains to mush and induce seizures, and oh my god, white bread contains bleached flour which will make their limbs fall off, so peanut butter and jelly sandwiches must be made with 37 grain wheat bread that tastes like the bottom of my shoe.

oh wait, cancel the peanut butter, because peanuts give you aids and melt your lungs.

how many generations of kids have led normal kid lives without turning into kid-sized puddles of blood and hair? the only thing snow is good for is skiing and snowballs, and as far as i know, no kid has ever had his arms fall off from eating a grilled cheese sandwich.

maybe all this effort that parents spend on making sure their kids don’t get vaccinated, because vaccines are a way for the man to pad his pocket, and eat only organic food that is made from rainbows and happy soy plants should go towards being a good parent. go to the park and toss a baseball around. teach your son how to gut a fish and ride a bike. come home from work on time to eat dinner with your child. read a bed time story and kiss your daughter on the forehead at night.

good parenting is so much more than making sure your kid is safe from the miniscule threats in their school’s lunch rooms. whatever happened to being concerned about bullies? making the basketball team? winning the science fair?

hopefully, bullies in today’s schools aren’t too emaciated from their diet of water and wheat bread to beat up on the runty kids. hopefully, basketball hasn’t been outlawed because sports cause cancer. and the science fair?

i hope its done away with – its the scientists that tell me that farmed salmon will make my eyes explode.

September 15, 2007 at 6:13 pm Leave a comment


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