Famous Last Words

I read Cindy’s comment in response to my last post and wanted to affirm my commitment to good parenting, and against bad manners in general. She did an excellent job of outlining disgusting parent behavior (Clipping a child’s fingernails on a public bus? Really?!), so there’s no need to revisit those unfortunate experiences.

But I promise that you won’t see me clipping nails, picking noses, exploring ear holes, flossing teeth, or wiping asses anywhere in public, unless there’s a medical emergency of some sort which calls for such behavior, in which case you will know it, because I’ll be rolling my eyes and blushing and saying something like, “I’m so sorry, but I *have* to clip his nails right now, because it’s a medical emergency” (and why would I even be carrying around clippers to begin with?), though you can rest assured that if that happens I’ll be collecting the clippings in a tissue and storing it in my pocket, where it belongs. And if there’s any cleanup that involves shit, piss, vomit, blood, or semen (the latter probably being my fault — gross, gross, I know!) then we’ll run home or to the nearest bathroom to take care of it.

And while I’m on the subject of “I’ll nevers,” let me add that I will never block the aisle of my favorite cafe with an SUV sized stroller, and then sit there while my baby cries, too busy talking to my best friend about breast feeding to pay attention to him. Nor will I leave the stroller untended — untended as in, totally out of my eyesight — in the middle of a Park Slope Food Coop aisle, and I will not, while having a conversation on my cell phone about how I would exercise more if I didn’t have a child to mind all day, ignore said child when she begins banging on the stroller screaming, “No mommy, no!” while waiting in a way too long line at said Coop. I’ll go so far as to say that I don’t like when kids say no to adults in general, unless there’s a thanks following it. And I don’t believe you should leave the house with a small child without bringing things to read or play with, as if you expected that the child’s attention span would fend for itself while having adult conversations about how you thought this kid would fulfill you, but really inside you’re still just as sad and hollow feeling as you were when you were twenty-five, and maybe you need to have an affair, or at least change careers.

I won’t ignore my child! The best defense against a bored, cranky kid is a good offense.

In short, I promise, here in public for all to see, to not be one of those parents, the type who give breeders a bad name, who feel entitled to do whatever the hell they want without consideration or thought of others and transmit that entitlement to their offspring. As George Castanza so aptly put it, “We’re living in a society here, people!”

All that said, I’m sure there are times when my child will be teething, or having a bad day, or sitting in a load of his own shit before I whisk him off for a quick change, and he will get on your nerves. But I’ll be there to say, “I’m sorry, please understand,” and smile crookedly and blush, and I hope that you’ll forgive me, and my son. He can’t help it, he’s a baby. And I’ll be doing my best!

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4 Responses to “Famous Last Words”


  1. 1 cindym March 11, 2009 at 1:54 am

    Right on brother.

    It’s funny, I almost quoted Costanza in my vitriolic comment earlier, but I thought it was going too far. 😉

    Sorry I went off. But honestly, WHO CLIPS THEIR KID’S NAILS ON A PUBLIC BUS? One of my coworkers likes to file their nails in their cube. I hear the little “ressh ressh ressh” sound and I’m like, I KNOW WHAT YOU’RE UP TO!! Maybe I have weird fingernail anxieties. Like Martin Amis and his teeth nightmares.

    I guess the more depressing mother was the one on the bus who called her friend up and said within earshot of her kid, “I’m just gonna drop him off at the YMCA right now, don’t you want to meet up with me and party? Yeah, we’re almost at his stop. Come on baby, come on over and party. You owe me one after passing out at my birthday last weekend! Yeah baby, you owe it to me and shit! Dontcha wanna party?” etc. etc. I wanted to scoop the kid up and run away with him. He had nerdy little glasses and looked so lost. 😦

    • 2 briangresko March 12, 2009 at 3:00 pm

      It’s sad how some parents treat their kids, but even sadder to think that you’ve had multiple unpleasant experiences with baby nail clippings. How weird!

  2. 3 Steve Greenwood March 19, 2009 at 5:28 pm

    I have also done my best to avoid pictures of Lucas’ private parts. I mean sure it’s cute and all…he’s got tiny junk. but do people really need to see it? does it need to be posted to facebook for all friends to see (and friends of friends).

    I say nay.


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