California is still the Old West

Peanut: Can we have beets for dinner?
Me: Sure.
P: Raw, please. Or cooked.
M: Which one?
P: Raw. Shredded.
M: Okay.
P: With goat cheese, please. And balsamic. Or I’ll shoot you.

I’m quite over the shooting phase. It has been 10 days, and the boy can make anything into “a shooter.”

He doesn’t know a thing about guns. He only recently learned about bows and arrows. We’ve not shown him any movies with any projectile-firing weapons, and we don’t have any toys that fire projectiles. I was raised with guns, know my way around a gun, and have a terrified-respect relationship with guns. I want to live in a world with no guns. [Shut up with your “it’s too late for that, you commie liberal.” I know that, you jackass. And I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to the parents who read this blog because their kids drive them nuts, too. Go pay the NRA to lobby for your Constitution-misreading right and leave my blog alone.]

And yet he’s up every morning at 6, demanding tape so he can attach something to something else and pretend it shoots. Mostly his contraptions shoot me, because I’m the one lucky enough to be locked in a house with him far too many hours a day.

I asked the teachers, who said the same thing all the books do…pretend violence is not real violence. It’s natural and acceptable play. As long as you don’t give him something that fires projectiles, and as long as you don’t make a big deal about it, all will be fine.

So when he points at me, I say, casually, “please don’t point at me because I don’t like it.” And then I move on to something else, distracting either him or myself so we can not focus on the damned shooter.

Nope. 20 hours a day that kid is pointing something at me and bellowing, “soot soot soot!” [We have issues with the /sh/ sound.]

I’d be fine with a finger as a shooter. I’ll play pretend whip cream fight or pretend water hose like any other goofy mom. Heck, I’ll play pretend poop squirter if the mood strikes. But please don’t point construction paper-taped-pencils at me and say you’re going to make me dead. I know you don’t know what dead is. I know you don’t understand why pointing at anything you don’t want to kill is absolutely not okay. I know you need a fantasy life.

Can you please get it somewhere else?

Because you’re the one who wants shredded raw beets with goat cheese and balsamic. And if the other shooters heard you, they’d shoot you just for saying that.

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13 thoughts on “California is still the Old West

  1. You’ve got some pretend teachers at your school!

    can I just get this outta my system now? here goes: SHOOT! shoot you an email. shoot me now. shoot em up. shoot em down. shoot the shit. shoot the breeze. shoot some hoops. shoot to kill. don’t shoot the messenger! Nice Shootin Tex:) this is like shooting fish in a barrel!

    past tense: shot through the heart and you’re to blame you give love a bad name. my eyes are shot. shot to death. blood shot.

    poop squirter mood? there’s a ring color for that! probably bole.

  2. Well shoot, after a comment like that, I really just don’t know what to say.

    My Monster is all into guns and swords and bows and arrows too, he makes them out of everything and pretends he’s hunting: first it was jaguars, then bad guys, and now it’s the Spanish (result of an early lesson in colonial history gone terribly wrong).

    (Oh, and way to tell off The Jackass! Go Naptime!)

  3. Will it help you to know that they ALL go through that? That it is somehow fixed in that danged Y chromosome that also allows them to pee standing up without having to squat?

    Been there, done that, and I agree, the Jackass needs to stay away from your blog, and if some cowboys actually heard his dinner order, Peanut would be a goner…

  4. We didn’t allow toy guns for just that reason. But still one day they just started turning whatever was lying around into “shooters” (only theirs said “pew, pew” because I think they were more lasers than shooters). I’ve been shot by a piece of cheese shaped like a gun. It really does appear to be wired in, somehow.

    I finally gave up and got a nerf shooter for them, which kind of got it out of their systems. They loved to shoot the darts at the door (NEVER ALLOWED TO SHOOT AT PEOPLE). Then? It got boring. And they turned into ninjas instead, with the kicking and hiyaing.

    Truth be told, I sort of miss the nerf love. It was much quieter…

  5. A family from eldest’s preschool lets their son play with very realistic looking guns. We were at their house once, and the boy got out his guns and started playing around with them. Eldest was intrigued, but I said, “We don’t play with guns.” And I asked if they would mind putting those away until we left. It was the first and only time I have ever been “that” mom. But you know… I just don’t like guns. I was not raised around them, and that may be part of the problem. Still… I just don’t want any kid of mine to mess with guns.

    There is another family from the preschool that owns guns, and I have never and will never allow eldest to have a playdate at their house. Paranoid? Yes. But my kid would be the one to play with it and either kill himself or kill another kid.

  6. I’m giggling now, remembering the straw/chopstick incident at the Ferry building last weekend!

    “P., I don’t like it when you point at me…P., pointing at people isn’t polite…P., look at my face–would you look at my face, please? Don’t point…If you point one more time, you’re going home, buddy, do you want that?”

    You were so damn patient. I loved it.

    SHOOT! I can’t believe your kid eats raw beet salad with goat cheese and balsamic. You are uber-mom.

  7. Okay, first of all can I just say RAW BEETS WITH GOAT CHEESE AND BALSAMIC????? If you don’t get mother of the year award for that one, I don’t know who could. The fact that your child not only knows what beets, goat cheese, and balsamic are is fantastic, but the fact that he ASKS to eat them? That’s nothing short of miraculous. Forget about the shooting. And give yourself a freaking mommy medal.

  8. Oh. And one more thing. “[Shut up with your “it’s too late for that, you commie liberal.” I know that, you jackass. And I wasn’t talking to you. I was talking to the parents who read this blog because their kids drive them nuts, too. Go pay the NRA to lobby for your Constitution-misreading right and leave my blog alone.]”

    I’m going to be laughing for the next week on this one, Nap. Thank you.

  9. Welcome to being a mom of boys. The old saying goes “You give a girl a stick, it’s a doll; you give a boy a stick, it’s a weapon.” I still can’t get over that it’s true. If my boys decide to shoot at people, they get one warning not to, and then I take “it” away. Some days I collect a lot of stuff.

  10. Oh my goodness, what a sophisticated palate! I’m duly impressed. About the shooting? It’s gotta be a boy thing. Mine are shooters and, like you, I feel like a broken record, “Mommy doesn’t play guns. Please don’t point that at me. Pointing isn’t nice if everyone isn’t playing together.” Sheesh!

  11. boys shoot things, period. they do. from what i’ve witnessed lately from certain 4 year old boys, it appears to be genetic. i think your telling him not to point it at you is completely acceptable, and anyone who knows about guns would agree. keep that thing pointed away from me.

    and yeah, anyone who gets balsamic goat cheese beets for dinner and tries to shoot the cook gets in serious trouble. scraps for you, buddy! if ever there was a perfect opportunity for punishment, this is it!

  12. Raw beets with goat cheese and balsamic… Why do I find myself seething when hearing that as cuisine for children. Yes it is responsible. Yes it is healthy. I guess it is just the bitterness felt by being judged for serving my little ones french fries and chicken nuggets from McDonalds.

    My wife’s ex-stepdad eats uber-healthy. When at California Pizza Kitchen, he would impose his healthy eating on us, and would not allow us to order a pizza that wasn’t wheat crust (even if we offered to pay). He would turn up his nose in disgust at people who eat fast food. But come on, just because he eats super healthy,his house is clean, and he has a Masters degree doesn’t mean his life is perfect.

    What makes the unhealthy eater, whose house is cluttered, with just an associates degree such an abomination? I mean, if we compared our family unit situation, his would be in the dumps. I don’t rub that in his face…

    Its just after 28 years, its baffling how people naturally judge those with opposite values. (Yes, I am guilty of that)…

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