Sunday, November 05, 2006

Don't ask where I keep the crackers

One of the movies I enjoy watching is I'll Do Anything (1994) starring Nick Nolte as a divorced dad forced into the role of single parent to his very precocious daughter who is obviously used to getting her way.

A memorable scene includes the daughter, Jeannie, requesting a specific change of clothes amidst flying cross country. Her dad, Matt, tells her that he cannot get the requested dress as it is in the luggage compartment, "under the plane". To which Jeannie replies, "Well, why don't you just run down there and get it."

*blink* *blink*


The truth is, I've heard kids say similar things to their parents and the shocker is the parents actually comply. They give in simply to avoid the pissing and moaning and whining and kvetching and demanding. It's a vicious cycle. The pissing and moaning and the caving.

I don't play that game. At all. I can tune a kid's voice right out. Doesn't bother me in the least unless of course it occurs during an episode of "Survivor" and then the offending child will be sent to their room. Where they can whine and cry all they want. The answer will still be "no" and they'll miss out on dessert.

Some people think that ~K~ is spoiled and I don't really know why. She hears "NO" more often than anything and rarely gets her way. Consequences are worse if she attempts to whine or beg. Punishments are swift and sure. And usually this nips things in the bud. No arguments. No nothing.

Go straight to Jail.

Do not pass go. Do not collect $200.

But recently, in some circumstances, upon hearing "NO" she continues to act as if I said nothing at all. Not that she's being disobedient and doing what she wants, but she seems to expect me to carryout her wishes and desires as if I had each and every necessary item at my disposal.

For example, yesterday we had take-out for dinner. ~K~ quickly ate her french fries, of which she (rudely) neglected to offer anyone else and of which she had the only serving. She then asked if she might have some more. I replied "NO" and that there weren't any more - she had eaten the only ones.

But she INSISTED that there were more. Again, I clearly stated that 'No" there were no more french fries as she had eaten the only ones we had ordered. We. Don't. Have. Any. More. Fries!

And then she insisted, again, that we did have more fries to which I replied, "WHERE WOULD YOU LIKE ME TO GET THEM? DO YOU REALLY THINK I CAN PULL FRENCH FRIES OUT OF MY BEHIND????"

I know. I'm a horrible parent and the words just flew out of my mouth before I could stop them. But I mean, what part of "NO We DO NOT have any more" did she not hear? What more could I say to make her understand?

What's worse is that it happened again today.

I was making grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch but alas her regular choice of American cheese was unavailable. However, we did have a bag of the shredded cheese that she loves. She loves to eat it so much she will sneak it by the spoonfuls out of the bag.

So I informed her that we were out of regular cheese and her options now were 1) a grilled shredded cheese sandwich or 2) no grilled cheese sandwich at all. (She's kinda particular so rather than waste food, I had to ask.)

And what do you think she said?

She said, "I'll have regular cheese."

*blink* *blink*

huh? what? after yesterday? She's doing this again?

"~K~, we don't have regular cheese. I just told you that. We only have shredded cheese. Now, do you want a grilled cheese sandwich with shredded cheese?"

So what do you think she said next? Yep. She did.

"Regular cheese, please."

And what do you think I said in reply? Yes I did.

"Do you really think I can pull slices of American Cheese out of my behind?"

She ate the grilled shredded cheese sandwich and even complemented me on it.


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