Your Grrrs: Jan.23, 2007

Here are some of your responses to Mike's last column.

Jerome K. writes: Mike, I love your columns. Re: Disciplining kids, my kids were never allowed to throw tantrums in stores, act up in church, etc... While living in a small town in Southwest Virginia, a lady at our church accused me of beating my two red-headed boys. When I asked why she thought that, she said because if they start to act up, all I do is snap my fingers and they straighten up. I told her that I have told them that if they misbehave in church I will take them outside and bust their butts. Then I told her that if they do misbehave, I take them outside and bust their butts. 'Nuff said.

They are now 17 and 20, and they are great kids. I have been told by several people what good kids they are. The boys have told their mom and I that they are glad now we didn’t let them get away with stuff like that, especially when they see a child screaming in a store.

Not everyone lets their kids get away with everything, and they still like hanging out with mom and dad.

I am currently in Kuwait, and the Indians working in the barber shop on base here not only do a great job, they also give shoulder, neck and head massages with a haircut! How's that for service?

Ann writes: Dear Mike, what happened to your Grrrr column? It’s still entitled, “Grrr,” but every other column seems to be a “celebrity” update. Another awards show with another bunch of “stars.” Gag me. If I want to read about every burp, yawn, boy/girl friend of the week, etc. of these people, I will read gossip columns. Please, oh please, go back to your humorous observations of life -- that is what we read “Grrr” for!

Donna writes: I have a new Grrr about a new item that kids have today: These skating shoes. The ones with wheels on them so that kids can skate around instead of walking. Whoever invented these things should be sued, shot or made to walk in a closed room with about 30 of these kids in there, with no way out. In the past week alone, I have seen an elderly couple almost get knocked down at the mall by these kids and I did not see any parents nearby. If the parents were nearby, the kids were not punished. I was also at a restaurant this week and two kids were rolling around the restaurant tables everywhere. But this time, not only did the parents not punish them, the manager of the restaurant did not do anything. Am I wrong in that if I spend $60+ on a meal, then I can have it in peace?? I made a comment to my husband, loud enough for several tables in my section to hear me, about the rudeness of the parents for not controlling the kids. No one spoke up. That means either they discarded my comments or the parents weren't even in my section. I wanted to snatch those shoes off those kids myself. I feel sorry for these kids today. They will not grow up to become productive members of society. Love your column, by the way, and thanks for letting me rant.

Lisa G. writes: This is in regards to parents who do not discipline their children. I went to a play two weekends ago, and was seated next to a little boy who could not have been more than three or four. His mother was seated on the other side of him. I must give kudos to the mother! She was so considerate and was instilling that in her small son as well. There were a couple of times when her son was moving around in his seat and would unintentionally kick me, or brush against me. His mother corrected him right away, in a very loving manner, by explaining to him how important it is to be aware of who our neighbors are and that we don't knock in to them. His response: "Mom, that lady lives next door to us?" The mom went on to explain that it was courteous to be aware of our neighbors sitting next to us, because no one likes to be kicked, etc. In this day and age, I was surprised and also very pleased to hear the conversation between mother and son. I wish all parents were concerned with raising well-behaved and courteous children. This mom gave me faith that there are still good parents out there!

Cynthia B. writes: I’m glad you had fun at the Globes, Mike, but really, it bores me to tears. I wouldn’t even bother Grring about it if it weren’t so intrusive. I tried to turn on the cable channel which shows what shows are on, and when, but it was unavailable. Instead, there was Joan Rivers and her daughter swooning over celebrities and their clothing, as if there isn’t enough of that every day, and on 100 other channels. Grrrr to the celebrities and their retinues to think that everyone is dying to fawn over them, and waiting with bated breath to see who won what award. Grrr to every page I turned to on the Web for news and information about other things plastering the same pictures on their front pages. And especially grrrr to those anorexic starlets who think that we want to see every inch of their scrawny little bodies. I mean, come on … anyone that rich and that skinny has no right to be that droopy.

Pam S. writes: I just finished reading the news article about the families that are suing MySpace for their children being abused by people they met on MySpace. Now here are my questions: Where were the parents during this whole time? Why weren't the parents monitoring their Internet usage? Why didn't the parents ever sit and talk to their kids about online safety? Where were the parents when these kids went to meet these people? There are probably two options: 1) Mom and Dad aren't around enough to know where their kids are or 2) Their little angel lied about where they were going. But the parents want to sue MySpace for what happened -- for what? Extra money? Does that really solve the problem?

I may only be 25, but when I was growing up, my parents were highly involved in my life and nothing like this would have happened because they would been paying attention. This is just another case of adults teaching children that it's OK to blame others when they mess up. This is why kids can't take responsibility for their actions. Thanks.

Stacie G. writes: My GRRR is how easily adults expect a child to think on the same level they
do. Why didn't Shawn Hornbeck tell the cops he had been taken? How could he have a girlfriend? If he had friends, why didn't he tell them? We don't know all the details, nor do we necessarily have a right to know it all. We don't know what threats were made or what lies he was told to the point that even seeing the Web site about his disappearance wasn't enough to be able to come forward. We teach our kids to trust adult authority and to show respect and then blame them when they do because they fall prey to a predator who betrays that trust. Give the kid a break!

Sue writes: Watching the National Anthem being sung prior to the Patriots/Colts playoff game,
I have one question: Can't anybody sing the anthem as written? I'm really tired of singers and their vocal gymnastics. The anthem is much more moving when sung properly, as opposed to the singer trying to impress the crowd with their vocal stylings.

André-Tascha L. writes: I am a periodic reader of your column. I write for one reason. For me a MAJOR Grrr is when I get bombarded by telemarketing calls (despite being on the Do Not Call Registry). Telemarketers routinely ignore such. I learned however that you can fight back under a federal law with the acronym of the TCPA and sue them in small claims court. I have started doing this to the most egregious telemarketers (those who refuse to listen when I tell them to put me on their do not call list).

Having recently received a judgment for $3,560 against one of these outfits, I have now been subjected to harassment (signing me up for numerous e-mail newsletters, porn e-mails, etc). See my rant at the top of the front page of I am not looking for a plug for my site as much as I want the word to get out that people can actually do something about these nefarious characters. Many thanks.

Leslie writes: Yet another Grrr about Parking Lot Stalkers aka Particularly Lazy Slackers.
The other day I was walking out of a movie theater to where I parked, which was far, far away because the lot was packed. The weather was gorgeous, sunny and about 60. A car started stalking us as we walked, so naturally we slowed our pace. As we walked further and further away from the theater, they gave up and turned down another aisle. I feel no remorse for laughing at them (I guessed they were not handicapped because there are several handicapped parking spots available).

This situation really irritates me because millions of Americans are overweight, and everyone is looking for the perfect miracle diet. More realistically, these people could start by changing some of their lifestyle habits, such as parking further away from the store, taking the stairs, etc. And even if you aren't overweight, it is obviously beneficial to park further away so you can get some exercise. What is the big deal about parking far away anyway? Is it really so terrible? It adds maybe five minutes to your store visit (which you would waste by waiting for a spot). And most of the time, they can get to their destination more quickly if they just find another spot a few rows down. Waiting for a car to leave its space can take several minutes. Come on! Stop blocking traffic when you could choose a "less desirable" spot and walk to the store in about the same amount of time! Grrrrrrrrrrr!

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