Or Why I want to go to Chicago and kick some ass.

Read this if you want to know what I’m vanting about today. Or, just hold on for the ride. So I mentioned I’ve been reading One Good Thing, right? Really getting into the stories Flea tells about her family and her job and having a great time? Well, her last post (June 26th) really ticked me off. Oh, I’m not upset with her, I am upset with the stupid woman who lives in her neighborhood that dared to make these horrid accusations without any basis in fact.

Here’s the thing, people. I don’t have kids, so maybe I can’t understand everything about child raising but I do know this. You can not witness one event and decide, right then and there, that you know what this person’s parenting skills are like and that they are a “bad parent.” I’m sorry. It doesn’t work that way.

This happened to a former friend of mine once. He was at Target, filling a prescription for his son who had an extremely bad ear infection when his son said he didn’t feel good. Brought him to the bathroom and whoosh, kid is sick all over the place. Turns out that the shot of antibiotics the doctor gave him caused an allergic reaction. So, seeing his girlfriend was waiting to check out, he decided to take said kid out to the car and wait with him until she finished. On the way to the car, some complete stranger starts in on him about what a horrible father he is and that he had better not punish his boy for throwing up. How dare he take the kid shopping when he was sick? How dare he make the child sit in the car by himself? And on and on. Knowing nothing of the situation, the guy decides to take it upon himself to brand my friend as a bad parent.

Working for a department store, I witnessed a father try to keep his son from smacking his baby sister in the head with a toy. The kid was not responding well to his father and kept on hitting her, even after the toy was taken away. Dad finally said “If you hit your sister one more time, I will spank you.” Kid does it again. Dad takes kid out of the cart, taps him once or twice on the butt and puts him back in the cart. Didn’t hurt him, just made him think about what he was doing. Some old woman comes running up, screaming about how she’s calling the cops on him for child abuse. Why? He didn’t use a belt, he didn’t whale on the kid with a baseball bat, but, because he disciplined his child, he was a bad parent.

Kids are tricky. I know this because I used to be a kid, I used to babysit and I now have a nephew. They think nothing of trying to get away from Mom for a few minutes to explore. I used to drive my Mom crazy anytime we went to Target because I’d always disappear on her. Until she figured out that I headed straight for the book section and started checking there first before panicking.

So, to Flea, all I have to say is I am sorry that this stupid woman thought she knew everything about you and your family, I am glad that your neighbors stuck up for you and I am thrilled that Alex and Christopher are okay.

And to this woman in Chicago, you are just lucky that I a) don’t know who you are, b) don’t drive and c) am surrounded by sane people who prevent me from taking road trips o’revenge. And who the hell cares if her kids wear shoes? Hello? It’s summer? I’d be barefoot all the time if I could get away with it. You want to go yell at my Mom for awhile? I dare you. She’d kick your ass.

Okay. The birds have shut up finally. I’m going to try and sleep again.