Tuesday, April 10, 2012

A Story of Dinosaured Jerkery

I was that parent yesterday.

The kids and I headed to the dinosaur museum yesterday with some friends, and I became the parent I hate for about five minutes while we were there.

There is a portion of the museum that has an erosion pool—a circular area where kids can move around sand and see how it changes the water path. Jacko loves this part of the museum, mostly because there are also little toy dinosaurs available that you can add to your sand islands. This was our first trip to the museum where Lucy could also play at the erosion pool.

Next to Lucy, there was a two-year-old boy who didn't have an adult close to him. He was picking up a clod of wet sand and hucking it across the pool; he did this over and over, sometimes making it out of the pool and hitting the wall with the wet sand.

I let him do it five or so times, until he got some on Lucy.

Oh no he didn't.

I told him, "Hey pal, please don't throw sand. We don't want to hit our friends with it."

He looked at me, puzzled. And then he did it again.

Oh no he didn't. Again.

Two or three minutes passed by of him throwing sand, with Lucy and I shifting away from him every second. He followed us with each step, unwittingly I believe.

I finally went over to a gaggle of put-together ladies and said, "Hi. Do any of you know who the mommy of that little boy is?" One white-cardiganed mommy jumped up, told the little boy not to throw sand, and offered me the condolence that "he's only two." I thanked her and returned to little Lu.

But the kid kept throwing sand, making Lucy's hair into a tiny blonde beach. I picked her up and headed the long way to the sink to wash her off—I was done dealing with this inattentive parent.

As I made my way to the sink, I passed my friend Matt and said aloud, "I had to lay the smackdown on a mom just now. I'll tell you about it later."

Guess who was standing at the sink, within earshot of my bravado?

She had apparently had enough of her son throwing sand as well, because the mother I had talked to had taken the short way to the sink and was washing her son's hands.


I hate parenting other kids in public places, but I hate inattentive parents more.

And I hate big ol' braggy jerks most of all.

Do you have a story of ill-timed bravado?
 Are you always being overheard at just the wrong time?
Let's hear about it in the comments.

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