Thursday, October 23, 2008

I want a pony.

I'm still pissed about yesterday's Oh-pur.

(Though, technically I don't have to pee. On the way to the bathroom the phone rang, I picked it up, and since it was my husband I felt free to flush. Marriage is awesome.)

Part of my pissiness has been building up because I just finished re-reading the Little House series of books, by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

When I need a kick in my 21st century butt I read those books.

What many parents relayed in yesterday's Oh-pur is that they wanted their children to have more than they had growing up. What I don't understand is how that translates to "material possessions" for so many parents in today's world. Maybe in Laura Ingalls world that would have been true, where having more meant having more than two sets of clothing to wear and one pair of shoes...or more education or plentiful more nutritious what's the deal with these parents today? Where are their heads?

Did you see the end of the show where a parent was considering taking out a loan to send her fifth grade son on a field trip to Costa Rica? Good hell...COSTA RICA. C'mere woman, I need to lay a Laura Ingalls on your ass.

I'm a lucky woman. My kids are lucky kids. I have the beautiful opportunity of having this computer to explore the world, a telephone to keep in touch with my husband during the day while he's working a job that doesn't require manual labor and isn't dangerous, and a toilet with running water in my modernly heated home which is clean smelling and sanitary. Certainly we could be worse off and the hell I won't make sure my kids know it.

I suppose attitudes aren't any different than in the time of Aristotle and Socrates...but then again, they didn't have Walmarts or Dancing with the Stars.


  1. But it's IMPORTANT for the boy to go to Trinidad ... everyone else is going! Peer pressure is such a bitch. Don't you understand this? I just don't get you sometimes. I sure hope you keep his cell phone minutes up to date ...

    I stopped watching Oprah a long time ago when her, "Must Have" things got to where they were ridiculous amounts of money, like $150 for a pair of slippers and $400 for a coat, or $80 for a coloured plastic whisk. What planet is she from? I have a subscription to her magazine and it's going to run out. I cannot subscribe to her way of life.

    Suze Orman is another one. She's great at what she does. But she's rich as Opy and sometimes her suggestions just aren't relevant for today's society.

    They both make me want to barf. Where's the bucket? Where?

  2. Trinidad? That wasn't what I meant. Costa Rica is what I meant. I expect you to know what I mean, not what I write ....

  3. SG and I talk a lot about how spoiled we (as in us, as in U.S.) are and most of us don't even know it.

    I'm thoroughly convinced that a kid who can make fun from a stick and a mud puddle...or heaven forbid, a book!...has the advantage over the kid with the cell phones, video games, and computers.

    Like you, I'm not entirely against the video games (and other technology) but there needs to be some kind of balance.

  4. Yesterday's rant was righteous, Becky. I gave the Oh-pur lowdown to my husband, who nearly strained a neck muscle rolling his eyes so vigorously.

    Perspective: Last week, I dropped off some used clothes and a bunch of empty shopping bags at the local food pantry. The place was packed to the rafters with people too broke to buy enough groceries, even with food stamps. Two of them issued a heartfelt "thank you" to me as I passed by. I went home and made a big fat donation to the pantry online because, damn. I am lucky. The pantry's clients average less than $700 a month of income, spend about 90% of their income on housing costs, and are one problem away from homelessness. People who are overmortgaged and in debt and about to be foreclosed on? They have so much more than the pantry clients do.

    So people need to tighten spending, but they don't know how to break it to the kids? Jesus. Just tell the kids: "You've been incredibly fortunate, and all your needs have been taken care of. I'm sorry we can't afford to send you to Costa Rica, but if you're willing to download fewer iTunes and ringtones, hey, we can give more money to help those who aren't as lucky as we are." And quit the damned whining of entitlement already.

  5. You want a pony ? Justin says he has one-make him share !

  6. Believe me, Justin likes to share his pony.

  7. i'm so glad i didn't watch opy. i think i would have bene ill.

    my son is a safety patrol and at the end of the year they go to DC. we started saving for this trip in august. we put a bit aside every week and he puts 3/4 of his allowance every week. but to a ten year old, the trip is a long way off and he keeps asking for other items like video games. i have gotten very, very good at saying NO. this trip is his big ticket item of the year, maybe even the decade.

  8. oprah is out of touch with reality. can't watch her show anymore and like you i can't stand to see her fawning over celebs and giving away stuff that costs her NOTHING but boosts her ratings.
    oh and, you are right! kids don't need all of the crap. there are plenty of people who can't even eat never mind afford a cellphone or a bloody whatjamacallit.
    we aren't doing kids any favours by indulging them in this way.
    some people are daft! :-)

  9. Tammie, what gets me is that the Costa Rica mother knew that this trip was scheduled since her son was in kindergarten. They had several years to prepare, but did not. She admitted they had 20K on her credit card, but I think she underemphasized the real amount.

    Clippy Mat, Oh-pur's doing a favorite things show very soon. I put watching that show in my gratitude journal and on my vision wall.

  10. I'm backtracking and will get to the candy rant I'm hearing so much about shortly.

    That said... today parents are friggin whack and kids are spoiled brats that I dread to pass by in the local Wal-Mart.

    I love the old books (and re-runs) myself. And I force the kids to watch them with me on occassion.

  11. Kids are too spoiled nowadays in my opinion. Everything is handed to them and they don't have to work for things like we did growing up. My parents didn't buy my first car--I had to work for over a year to save enough money to buy a clunker. But I was proud of myself for doing that--ON MY OWN.

    I think that if people are ungrateful for the things they have here, they need to move to a third world country and maybe then they'll appreciate what they do have.


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