These are the thoughts of a Texas transplant in West Michigan who makes his living as a newspaper reporter by evening, and a struggling novelist by day.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

disrespectful

i yelled at some kids yesterday. and you know what? it felt damn good. no, it wasn't me flipping out and going off on them or even cussing them out. here's the story.

yesterday afternoon we were upstairs cleaning up and i heard some of the neighborhood kids running around near the house. actually they sounded as if they were in our driveway. they were laughing and running.

the sounds abated and continued. i went downstairs and asked dawn to see what was up. she went outside through the kitchen door and i heard her talking to kids.

i went outside and saw red things on the driveway. i had previously heard a 'whomp" sound against the house that was associated with the kids but hadn't paid much attention to it. now i knew.

they were tomatoes. the little bastards grabbed tomotoes from the few plants we have (and a few peppers), picked them off, and threw them against the house. remnants of the tomoatoes were strewed throughout the drive.

i laid into them. there were four of them. three boys and one girl. however, i wanted to know who were the ones. i bent over and started into one of them who actually helped with gardening and planting some of the stuff. his eyes were wide as i told him he was NEVER to return to our driveway again. another kid, who i started into, said he didn't do it. the girl blamed it on her brother. so it turned out that two of the four were the culprits.
i turned my attention to them, telling them how would they like it if i went over to their homes and threw tomotoes at the exterior? perhaps because they were about 6 or 7 years old, it might not have sunk in, but i wanted to let them know they can't do that kind of shit and get away with it.

i told them to leave and never return. dawn, the smarter of the two, said they had to pick up the pieces of tomatoes and peppers and throw them away first. grudgingly they did. and they left. i told them never to come back again. i hope they don't. i will not be happy to see them in our driveway. they were invited in the first place.

i understand they are kids, young kids at that. but they must learn manners and behavior. they can never be too young to learn these things.

also, their parents should be to blame. after all, what are parents for but to learn from, to discipline. it comes from the home. if they don't get discipline from home, it ain't going to get done. so i blame the parents mostly. in fact, when the little girl went back across the street, her mother came out and she said, "so-and-so got in trouble." i thought the mom would come over to say something. but she said nothing. it leads me to believe she doesn't care. if it was my kid, i'd take him back and make him or her apologize and then perhaps buy some tomatoes for them as a gesture of good will.

if we had children, there's no way in hell they'd get away with this kind of shit. they wouldn't have don it in the first place, though.

the tmoto incident is over and i hope the little bastards don't ever come back beyond the sidewalk. i'll pretend to be the crotchety old man from "monster house" and yell at them every time they get close. ha!

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