Sunday, June 15, 2014

My Pit Bull Never Wailed and She Never Shot A Soul.

I had a friend whose daughter would spill whatever she was drinking. You would think a five year old would be able to be trained not to spill things, especially on furniture, but it didn’t turn out that way. I had just enough grape juice to get me through one more day and the mom creature goes into my refrigerator, drains my juice, hands it to her little spiller, and an accident occurs just moments later, all over the sofa.

No, no, just make yourself at home. Please, you house looks like you’ve turned two toddlers loose in it and there is no reason for mine to look any different.

There’s this odd thing that children people have about us childless folk and that would be the myth of endless money. Just because you’ve spent every last dime you made last year to give your kids the greatest Christmas ever from the finest selection of Mal-Wart’s- imported- from- China- plastic- going- to- break- in- three- days- right- when- they- get- bored- with- it- stuff, doesn’t mean I’m wealthy. It means you’ve managed to mismanage your money as well as your sex organs. It has nothing to do with me at all.

As a childless person who raises dogs I have an observation to make here: dogs are easier to train than kids are.

But I train my dogs. I spent a lot of time training my dogs to do what I want my dogs to do and I spent a lot of time training them how to act around people. Nowhere, in any doggie manual I have ever read, have I found the advice, “Just let them do what they want to do and clean up the mess they make and they will become better dogs for it”

Children people, you see this coming, don’t you? I thought that you would.

Children people, you’ve got a hard job, perhaps the hardest ever, but you decided to take up that job. It’s like trying to write a novel. I don’t expect the general public to help me write a novel. I don’t expect to sit down at a table in a restaurant and yell at the person across the room to lend me a word that means the same thing as obnoxious. Yet people bring kids into restaurants and those kids will scream from the time they get there until the time their parents finish a twelve course meal and two desserts. “You have to ignore them when they wail like that or they’ll just keep doing it because you reacted to it”. Or you could just wait until you have your kid trained before you take them out into a place where you’ve lessened the amount of enjoyment that everyone, every single person in there, is paying for.

There are kid places for children people to take their offspring. There are restaurants devoted to children. But there are also restaurants where people go to unwind a bit, to eat some decent food, and get away from it all. But some Wal-Martian brings Kenny Ray Jim Bob in and he wails like he’s been installed on an ambulance in Chicago in August.

So once I was in a very nice restaurant and of course, someone brings in a wailer, so I asked the waitress to move us to the other side of the restaurant, so we would, at a minimum, not have permanent hearing damage. We hadn’t received our order yet so we just got up and went to the bar. We were sitting there waiting and they seated another couple at our former table just minutes later and they too bailed. They joined us at the bar and I remarked we had now formed a small group of refugees. We drank a toast to muzzles. By this time it was fairly certain that kid was going to clear out about a quarter of that part of the room. A party of four that had been sitting across from the kid got up and walked out. If the parents of the child wanted a more intimate setting they were very rapidly approaching that point. Oh, and what were they doing? Nothing. Zip. Nada. They made no effort at all to stop the screaming. Eight people were displaced by the noise and they were still trying to figure out if Mad Dog was on the wine list.

I have a Pit Bull. I tell people I have a Pit Bull and they act like I just announced I keep a rattlesnake in my pocket. Yet how many teenagers and young adults have going on shooting sprees lately? People spend an inordinate amount of time lobbying for laws to be passed so I can’t have a well- trained dog while their kids are out there killing people. There are a lot of people out there raising their kids to expect they can behave any way they want to and still get everything they want and when this clashes with reality, they just keep acting out in ways that are more and more dramatic.

We’ve become a nation of distracted drivers and distracted parents. We expect our kids to be distracted. We train them to watch videos endlessly rather than parenting them. We teach them that they can get wonderful things for nothing at all and if the wonderful isn’t wonderful enough then they feel cheated. 

This may be a little too strong of a reaction from a man who watched a kid clear a restaurant but it seems to me the parents of young people who kill other people just don’t seem to realize what a dangerous animal they got as a pet so many years ago. You can’t just put them in a cage and expect good things to happen. You have to exercise them and play with them and train them. And you can’t just do this on the weekends and let it go the rest of the time. You have to spend some one on one time with these animals or you’re going to lose touch with who they really are.

This is the advice I give people who want to adopt dogs. I suspect it would work on children if parents only took the time to try.

Take Care,



  1. That is absolutely not too strong of a reaction. As usual, you have nailed the issue. When I was a child, it was explained to me, as soon as I was able to understand, that there would be unhappy consequences as a result of my acting out in public. And I think I turned out just fine, despite corporal punishment. All I know, for sure is that none of my siblings, or my schoolmates, or myself, have ever robbed, hurt, or killed anyone. And we are all in our late 50's, now.

    1. Thanks, Rod! I would take over parenting every day rather than hardly enough!

  2. It was made crystal clear that corporal punishment would be followed by capital punishment for a second infraction.

    Don't you worry about bruising your puppy's self esteem?

    1. Not much. She thinks she's a Princess now!