Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Parenting Skills...by Emma

We've talked about parenting before; things my parents said to me, and things I say to my kids. But parenting creates a wealth of experiences and lends quite the hand to the blogging world when looking for blog-worthy material. Ergo, my newest post on parenting...

A few weeks ago, I relate the following TRUE story to Big-D:

My kids took me to a belated Mother's Day dinner at a restaurant. While we are eating, a group of about 10 people are seated nearby. Soon, the waiter comes to take their order. One man, who seems to have declared himself as "in-charge", begins to order an array of appetizers. He mentions something like "We'll take two of the shrimp."

The wife sort of leans in and asks, "Do you think two will be enough?"

The husband gets all bent out of shape and LOUDLY says, "Well, let's start with that, and if we want, we can order more later." She nods and looks back down at her menu. Here she was merely trying to make a suggestion and he took it as a personal attack on his judgment; his food-ordering skills.

Someone else at the table says something like, "Oooh, their shrimp here is really good."

Thus, when the waiter asks, "Will that be all?" The wife again asks, "Are you sure just two of the shrimp will do?"

The man, obviously irritated says in a booming voice, "I said," enunciating every syllable and accentuating each word, "we can always get more later if we want. Let's at least get this going for now." Everyone at the table was suddenly looking down in their menus, and everyone in the restaurant was obviously uncomfortable too. I notice LittleDuckling's eyes wander over to the direction of the pompous jerk man.

I lean forward and quietly remind him, "M-Y-O-B, M-Y-O-B." Which he knows means, "mind your own business." As the place settled down a bit, LittleDuckling says, "I just think it was weird how loud that guy was talking. I mean, did you hear what he was saying?"

I replied, "Yes, I did. And let me make this perfectly clear to the both of you," I add, pointing to both of my sons. "If I ever, EVER, EVER hear you talk to your [future] wife like that--or even Girlfriend, I will personally chop off your wiener!"

To that, LittleDuckling's eyes practically bug out of his head as he suddenly sits up and guards his jewels with both hands. [At this point of the story, Big-D's jaw drops as well.] FunnyMan laughs at the look on LittleDuckling's Face.

I explain this to Big-D, who is still slightly shocked. I laugh and say, "You should have seen LittleDuckling's face."

Big-D replies, "Well, yeah..."

I further explain, "I can't help it. I know what that woman felt like. I understood the look of humiliation on her face as she got up to "go use the restroom" shortly after the order was placed. It was all I could do NOT to run into the restroom to comfort her."

Big-D nods as if to say, he understands. Then a minute later, in his radio-announcer voice, Big-D says, "Parenting Skills...by Emma: Tell your kids you will chop their wiener off if they talk down to their spouse." And then in his normal voice, as I am laughing, he adds "That's just great."

Of course I told Big-D, "You've just given me a new blog post... thanks!" And it got me thinking about the other stuff I tell my kids, that could possibly make the cut to my "parenting skills class", such as...

When I want one or more of them to sit down...
"Sit, Ubu, Sit." And on occasion add, "Good Dog."


When they call me to tattle and I am obviously NOT home to play referee...
"Gee, I'm sorry. Write it down, and I'll read about it when I get home."

When I find out the teacher caught him sleeping in class...
Me: "What did I tell you about that?"
Kid: "To say amen."
Me: "Well? Why didn't you?"
Kid: "I was so tired I forgot."

When I'm dropping them off at school, in a sarcastic tone...
"I love you, now get outta my car."

When I'm attempting to take a nap...
"I am gonna lay down. If i hear any noises, you are gonna get it."

When there is whining...
"I don't speak whine."

When there is complaining...
"Put on your big boy pants and do it."

When complaining continues...
"Do you need a diaper change too?"

When two of them are arguing...
"Knock it off. Just ignore each other. Pretend the other person is not even there. Better yet, pretend they are dead." To which on at least one occasion has triggered the following response, "Yeah, well then his dead body is irritating me--and it smells!"

Ah...the Joys of Parenting... Like I said, I won't be up for Mother of the Year anytime soon.

So what "unconventional" things have your parents said to you or you say to your children in the midst of discipline?

13 comments:

Yaya said...

Oh the weiner one is definitely the best!

Cindy said...

It's amazing, from one generation to the next, it's all the same. Perhaps there are a few different words, but it's all the same!

Good job :)

Mrs. S said...

I love the "I don't speak whine." I should try that; not that Moose would understand probably! But that's funny! And I would tell Moose I'd chop his wiener off too if he talked to a girl that way. That's not cool.


The thing I've told him is that Ba-bow (Blue from Blue's Clues) died. I was so frustrated with him asking and asking and asking to watch it, I finally just said "Ba-bow died!" Of course, he didn't understand (thankfully) but it was funny.

Mrs. S said...

Oh and I think sometimes they're night terrors. And I've googled it several times just to be sure. But the last few days (maybe week) it's been even before he lays down. We lay him on the bed and he starts his freaking out. So I think it's something else in his room: either his new bed (which we've replaced by his old crib converted into a toddler bed - we'll see if that works), or something on his walls, a shadow. I don't know. I wish he could help me out with some words. :S

Debbi said...

ha. You can be my mom anytime! I have a post about something similar to this coming up! Funny how we're posting similar stuff lately.

greenolive said...

So how much more shrimp did they need to order? One thing I find myself doing to combat tattling is when kid 1 says, "Mom, so and so called me a jerk." I respond, "stop being a jerk." This works as well with words like stupid, an idiot, or mean. They don't come back after that.

The Willeyes said...

I instituted "Tattle Tuesday" You are only allowed to tattle on Tuesday. You have to save it up til then :) It was amazingly effective because they never remembered by Tuesday what had happened :)

erasundar said...

I only wish I were half as witty as you. I'm trying to catch my breath from laughing!

Megs said...

My mom didn't cuss a lot. But I remember specifically one time when she took my face in her hands and said "Megan, you're annoying the hell outa me."

Needless to say, I got out of her way.

Holli and Billy said...

Oh boy... that totally made my day!!

TravAndToni said...

I often find myself saying to not only my children, but yours as well, "Don't make me kick you in your eye." To which all of them respond, "If you could reach." Not horribly effective, no, but always good for a laugh...

Puphigirl said...

I like to use a line from Mad TV. The spirit of a black momma inhabited Arnie Lange's body in a skit and he would say, "Don't make me break my foot off up in your a--!" I usually fade out the ass so as not to swear in front of the students.

Kyle is making fun that I put 'usually'. I mean mostly. Which is more than often or frequently. Ok, 99% of the time. But room for error.

purplehaze said...

I love the I don't speak Whine that is really great! I never have anything that witty to say. My two are teenagers and all they do is argue and it drives me crazy! I just say okay you can stop now, only my daughter goes on and on until I get really mad and end up yelling! She pushes my button to the limit. Than she has the nerve to say we only argue like you and dad! NO because we don't argue everyday!! If I ever talked to my mom the way my daughter talks to me sometimes I would get a slap in the face.