Wednesday, March 31, 2010

PSA

If you think I am an ass because you comment on my blog, but I don't comment on yours, I want you to know that there is some fuckery going on. I don't know why, but for certain blogs (Saint Dolores is one) I will write a comment, select google account, hit publish and then...nothing. No error message, just a refreshed page WITHOUT my comment. And on a bunch of other blogs, I have to enter my username/password info TWICE before the comment registers. It's pissing me off.

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Ten Things Tuesday

Ten Eleven Twelve Things That Are Currently Pissing Me Off.

1. The media reports about Ben Roethlessberger’s accuser. OK, look – I don’t know who is telling the truth. This girl may have been assaulted or she may big a big lying liar who lies. But the media repeatedly talking about her blood alcohol level just smacks of blaming the victim and it is unacceptable. UNACCEPTABLE! I had been drinking way back in 1985 when it almost happened to me. And you know what? Having a blood alcohol level below the legal limit would not have changed his intentions. It would not have made me capable of fighting off a larger, stronger person. It would not have given me eyes in the back of my head to see him silently stalking me, grabbing me, and trying to force himself on me. So, FUCK YOU, MEDIA!

2. Santonio Holmes and his stupid behavior and his even more stupid twittering.

3. The health care debate. I support health care reform, but I know there are many who don’t. And that is their right. But if you are going to oppose it, oppose it for intelligent reasons. In the past couple of days, I have heard so much nonsense. One person in particular is vocally opposed to HCR not because it affects him in any way shape or form – he won’t lose coverage or pay more money. No – he opposes it basically because it will be helping people NOT LIKE HIM. He doesn’t like the idea of health care being provided for poor people. Or sick people. Or immigrants. Nice, asshole.

4. And while we’re on the topic of health care reform – can’t we all play nice? How on earth people can call themselves “pro-life” and then call for the killing of children of those who voted for the bill, or throwing out racial slurs, or any other number of horrible, vile things? I read this recently and my head exploded.

5. A soda tax. That’s what the city is considering. A two cents per ounce tax on beverages sweetened with sugar. That would add 40 cents to a typical 20 ounce bottle and almost DOUBLE the cost of a 2-liter. This is the stupidest idea since the bajillion dollar trash cans.

6. My six year old daughter asked me if she was fat the other day. I can be self-deprecating, but I don’t do it in front of her. I don’t talk about being fat, I don’t call people fat, I don’t ask if I am fat. I blame our fucked up society.

7. People who don’t stop at stop signs. What? The? Fuck? Every single day, I see someone cruise right through, or slow down, but not stop. Seriously – how much of an effect are those four seconds really going to have on your day? And what makes you feel you are entitled to just ignore the laws that are there to protect me and my children? I swear, if any of these assholes cause me or my family any harm (or even near-harm), I will be dragging them from their car and beating the living shot out of them. I hope I can count on one of you to bail me out.

8. And while we’re on the subject of entitled assholes, what on earth makes people feel they have the right to litter? I can’t even grasp the train of thought that tells someone it is OK to just throw their trash wherever they want. When I see someone do it, I will pick up their litter and stop them, pretending to be helpful: “Excuse me – you dropped something.” I generally keep the “asshole” part in my head, so I don’t get MY ass kicked.

9. Re: Number 8 – this goes for cigarette butts, too! Why do people who wouldn’t consider throwing their (potentially highly taxed) Coke bottle out the car window not hesitate to throw their cigarette butts out? Ignoring the huge risk of fires, if every single one of the approximately 45 million smokers in the US threw out even one single butt (probably a low estimate) every day for a year, there would be a pile of them the size of over 11,000 (potentially highly taxed) 2 liter pop bottles. And since they don’t easily degrade, that pile would grow and grow. Stop it, people!

10. Facebook. I like facebook for a number of reasons. I want to punch it in the nads for even more reasons. I am sick to death of fan pages. I mean – there are a few that I find humorous, interesting and/or useful. But most fall into the categories of either a teenage fan girl (OMG, I LOVE whatever thing/person/band/etc sooooo much) or mean girl (so and so is a douche). I’m sick of looking at them.

11. And while we’re on the topic of facebook and mean girls, those fucking QUESTIONS! You now the ones – you get a notification that someone has answered a question about you and then you need to earn “coins” to see who. I hate those. For the record, friends: I have never, EVER skipped on a check, I am not tone deaf, I am aware that I need to lose weight, ditto on the shitty clothes I wear, I don’t think boxed wine is classy but that doesn’t mean I won’t drink it, I’d never pull a fire alarm as a prank, and I don’t want to hook up with YOU, either! If you are wondering about something, formspring me.

12. I was going to bitch about education (yet again) but I think that warrants its own post. I know, you’re all a-tremble with anticipation.

So - what's pissing YOU off?

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

DangerBoobs

A while back, I took a photo of my boobs. No – I’m not an aspiring porn star – I was riled up over the idea that breastfeeding is obscene when it’s perfectly acceptable that they are shoved in our faces to sell everything from beer to cologne and decided to blog about it. Anyway, I long since stopped thinking about the photo.

Until about a month ago when my husband was using my computer and told me he needed to ask me something. He said it in that tone. You know the one - the “we need to talk” tone. My heart was in my throat until he asked, “Why do you have a photo of your breasts on your computer?”

Oops.

See, he knows I blog. He didn’t for a long time, but eventually (when I started meeting up with other bloggers in real life) I had to come clean. But while he knows I blog, he doesn’t know any more than that. He doesn’t know where I blog, or what I blog about. He has never read my blog (as far as I know – if I’m wrong..Um…Hi Honey! Love you!) or even asked to. He’s not a computer-type guy. He doesn’t know anything about blogging or facebook or twitter. It’s just not his thing. I think he believes that computers are run by tiny elves or fairies or something. Either that or it’s learned helplessness since I am always here to do computer-y things. Probably both. It’s sad, really.

Anyway, I explained why I took the photo (actually I told him that I took the photo for a breast cancer thing – which is true – but then I used it on my blog. I left that part out since – as I said –he just doesn’t get blogging). Anyway, he knows me and after I explained it, he was fine.

Since mr b was screwed over laid off in August, he has been working for himself as a carpenter/woodworker. I’ve been taking photos of different projects he has been doing. Since I take a lot of photos in general, I tend to load them onto the computer and delete the memory card pretty frequently. And for some strange reason, the boob photo never deletes. Three-hundred other photos will go away just fine, but not the boob photo. Apparently my boobs are magical.

I noticed this phenomenon one day when I took my memory card to a photo printing machine in Giant Eagle and treated several other shoppers to a virtual peep show. But since I am old and forgetful, I immediately forgot about it. Or maybe it was because I went home and drank. One of those.

Fast forward to yesterday.

Mr b wanted to get prints of some of the photos to show to a client. But since printer ink is made of unicorn blood and costs seventeen trillion dollars and ounce, we only have black right now. So he needed to go somewhere to have them printed (he didn’t know I had already cleared the card). And being a non-computer person (or more likely – “helpless” person who didn’t want to put any thought in to how to use the self service machines), he headed to K1nkos.

You see where this is going, don’t you?

When he got to K1nkos, he got an employee to help him. Some young K1nkos employee got him to a machine and inserted the card. And the only photo that popped up on the screen? You got it. MY BOOBS! I’m sure the kid was scarred for life. Not only are my boobs magical, they’re dangerous!

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

Census Schmensus

It’s Census time! Are you excited? Yeah, me neither. Not that we have received our census form or anything. I think we’re on the census shit list since the last time around. I refused to answer a question, and they sent the Census Police to my house. If that conjures up images of a big, scary, official in a suit, let me pain a clearer picture for you – it was an old lady. An old, frail, persistent little bugger.

The question in…um…question was ethnicity. And I refused to answer it. Because there is no need for it. I’ll answer sex and race and income and education, but not ethnicity. We’re a long way off from Ellis Island and I can’t see why anyone needs this information. Or even how most anyone can answer it correctly. Mainly because they only give you one option – you have to pick ONE. And while there are some people out there whose entire family tree may have come from only one country. But most of us? Heinz 57.

And while I respect my heritage, I don’t identify with it strongly enough to pick any one over another. Do I say Italian because my maiden name ends in “-ini?” I loved my pap and his Italian swear words. But then I am turning my back on my Welsh grandfather. And my English relatives and a bunch of other ethnicities I don’t even know about. And my Argentinean grandma. OK, she wasn’t really from Argentina, but my Pap told me she was when I was little and I believed everything he ever said. So I spent years of my life telling everyone my Gram was from Argentina – using it in school assignments and everything. And I got really mad when someone didn’t believe it – being from a small town where everyone knows everything – and I complained to Gram that no one believed that she was from Argentina. And she said, “That’s terrible. But I’m from Louisiana.”

But aside from the fact that I could never in a million years narrow it down, I consider myself to be American. Not Italian-American or Welsh-American or Belgian-American or fucking Venution-American. AMERICAN. So the little old lady census police came to my house because they wanted an answer. I refused. I am an American, I said. American Indian?, she asked me. No, American. Honey, we just want to know what your background is, what your parents are, she whined. They’re American. Well, where did your grandparents come from? Same place all babies come from. And then they lived their lives in America. And my grandfathers went to war. For America. They were American. I don’t care if somewhere along the line a Scottish sperm met and Irish egg or a Spanish X met an Inuit Y. I am American. So SUCK IT, Census Police!

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Monday, March 15, 2010

Playing Favorites

Do you play favorites with your kids? I try not to, and I don’t think I do, but sometimes I wonder if the boy perceives it that way. I don’t have a favorite child. I love my kids both the same and yet differently. I think the question arises mainly because of their age difference. I can overlook things more with a six-year old than a thirteen-year old, explain it away because of age or immaturity.

Like when they are fighting about something stupid. The other day, there was some delightful screaming coming from the girl’s bedroom. It turns out that the kids were fighting over an eraser. A stupid eraser that looked like a $100 bill. I’m not sure whose eraser it was in the first place, but I think we had several of them and I recall putting at least one of them away in the girl’s craft drawers.

But apparently, there was one on the boy’s bedroom floor one minute and the next, and the next, it was gone. So, he went into her room, knowing that she had taken it. When she saw him grab it, the arguing ensued. They were both in full-on, “It’s MINE” mode and I was not in the mood. He ended up keeping the eraser, but I ended up defending her, and I am a little ashamed to admit that when these types of skirmishes arise, I tend to fall on her side of the issue.

It’s not because I love her more, or because she is my favorite. It’s mainly because OMG THE SCREAMING MAKE IT STOP! And I know that’s not necessarily the right attitude to have, because I don’t want to train her to scream and get what she wants. However, I can tell you with complete certainty that if I found that eraser and asked him if it was his or if he wanted it, he would not. Unless he could text his friends or play games or go online using that eraser, he would not give one teeny, tiny RAT’S ASS about that eraser. But because he knew his sister took it? That eraser suddenly became the essence of his very being. He Can’t! Live! Without! THAT ERASER!!!!

And that is what pisses me off. We go through this constantly. Stupid sibling fights over stupid things that neither of them cares about. They only want to win. To get one over on the other. People, I am an only child – I came into this parenting gig knowing nothing about these sibling fights. I was na├»ve enough to think that because they were so different in age that this wouldn’t happen. I even actually said those words when she was a baby.

I was MONUMENTALLY STUPID back then.

But the point is that now, I feel like I take her side over his too much. Don’t get me wrong – it’s not that I always take her side – I take his, too. But sometimes I look at the stupid fight they are having and I think, OK, it’s normal for a six-year old to act like a six-year old. But for a thirteen-year old to act like a six-year old? No. And when he has a legitimate beef with her (like yesterday when he came home from a sleepover to find that she had left a bunch of her toys in his room), I support him. I just can’t take when he fights with her for the sake of fighting with her. Because he doesn’t care about the stupid eraser. He only cares about winning. Same with her. She’d never look at that damned eraser again, but because he has it, she wants it. But she’s six. That’s what six-year olds do.

I also think some of this stems from the fact that she is my last child – my baby. I can remember when he would never sleep in his own bed and it made me insane. I read twitter and facebook updates and blog posts from my friends with a young child and they all sound just like me back then: “OMG this child needs to sleep in his/her own room before I lose my mind!” But knowing that she is my last, and that pretty soon, she won’t want to be caught dead sleeping with me? Some nights I find myself lying in bed actually wishing that she would come crawl in and snuggle with me. I know these days are numbered and I want to revel in every last one of them.

And, I mean, he’s thirteen. In case you don’t know a thirteen year old – they are kind of a pain in the ass. I was a pain in the ass when I was thirteen. Everyone I know was a pain in the ass when they were thirteen. That’s what thirteen is all about – you’re trying to figure out who you are and what you want and you’re growing and you’re tired and you’re hungry and all that plus Jesus GOD the hormones are making you into some sort of alien monster idiot moody pain in the ass clinically insane cyborg. And he’s no exception.

But he’s a good kid. Sure – he has stupid fights with his sister, but according to every single non-only child I have ever talked to – that’s normal. And sometimes he’ll sit patiently with her and help her play a game or watch a movie with her or help her trap a cat in a cardboard box. He can’t walk past a homeless person or a bell ringer or a donation box without digging into his own pocket. He enjoys life – he smiles and laughs easily. He loves to spend time with his family. He is kind. He plays with his little cousins. He’ll sit and talk to his 90 year old Baba even though she can’t hear a word he says. He wears his heart on his sleeve.

But like every other thirteen year old, he’s at this weird place in his life. He’s not a kid, but he’s not an adult and sometimes he’s a moody pain in the ass who doesn’t care what I think or do, and other times, he’s still my little boy who wants a hug and is easily hurt. He’s an almost-man who is still willing to hang out with his mom, who isn’t embarrassed to put his arm around me in public. Until, of course, he is in range of sight of another cyborg in a Hurley shirt and then he tries to discreetly remove himself. And I let him because I understand. I want to hang on to those moments for dear life because he’s still my baby boy, just like his sister is my baby girl.

So I’ll hug him and hold his hand when I can, and let go when he wants me to. And even though I’ll take his sister’s side is a stupid fight about a stupid eraser, I’ll let him stay up later, and talk to him like an adult, and give him the freedom he craves (within reason), and I won’t come down on him too hard when he forgets something for the seventy-hundredth time even though I sometimes want to take him in for a head X-ray because I am sure that along with all his pencils, his phone, and his science homework, he lost his brain, too. I won’t freak out when I hear him utter a swear word, and I won’t butt into his friendships or phone calls (much). And even though the sound of sixty straight minutes of hacky-sacking is driving me crazy, I’ll let him do it in the family room. And while the forty-minute long conversation about Runescape is killing my brain cells and making my ears bleed, I’ll nod and smile and listen just a little while longer.

And I hope he knows that is me taking his side.














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Thursday, March 11, 2010

This Week in Sports

Football:

By now, everyone with even half a brain has heard about Ben Roethlisberger and his being accused (AGAIN) of sexual assault. It’s been talked about at length and it’s already been said way better than I could ever say it. But I’m gonna say it anyway:

Dear Ben: Are you fucking STUPID???

And I’m not even going to wait for his reply, because YES. Yes, he is stupid. In fact, I am starting to wonder if he was some sort of mental handicap. I was on his side the first time around – I know that the rich and famous are often the target of the greedy. And truthfully, I didn’t want it to be true. But when it happens a second time? It’s hard to not be at least a little concerned. I have no idea who is telling the truth, but I do know one thing. If he - a successful, rich, 28 year old man who can go anywhere he wants – wouldn’t have been hanging around in a college bar, with college kids, this particular incident would never have happened. He needs to grow up, get some class, and stop making idiot decisions.

And now we’re suddenly hearing his side of the story, which makes it worse – he claims that he did have “sexual contact” with this girl and afterward, she fell and hit her head.

WHAT? THE? FUCK?

If he truly is being falsely accused, then perhaps the last time he was falsely accused, he should have learned to never get himself in a situation where someone could accuse him of such a thing. Don’t pick up strange women in bars. Don’t follow them into dark and/or deserted hallways or bathrooms looking for a blow job. Get a damned posse to follow you around and never let you out of their sight. And if you need to get laid that bad: Hookers, Ben, HOOKERS! Look into it. God knows you have the money (or you do until that lawyer of yours starts sending the bills).

DUMBASS!


Hockey:

Have you heard? Sidney Crosby turned down an offer to appear on David Letterman, therefore blowing “a golden opportunity to give the NHL some much-needed exposure.” Really? Are we really going there? Dramatic much?Now I realize that hockey doesn’t always have the best ratings when compared to other sports, but let’s be honest here – there are 42,763 games per team per season (true story) – not everyone can watch them all. But given the 900 million merchandising dollars the NHL is pulling in each year, I’m going to go ahead and guess that hockey is going to be just fine.


Baseball:

Now I love The Blogger Formerly Known as PittGirl as much as anyone, and I appreciate her love for the Biggest, Fattest, Saddest, Most Depressing, Loseriest Losers Ever Pirates. But I don’t think this is the year. In fact, I’ll be surprised if this is even the decade. Therefore, I’ll be jumping on BurghBaby’s bandwagon (and supporting a great cause).

If you’re so inclined, pick a side and jump on board. Either way, you’ll be helping out some kids in need and you might win something in the meantime.

Go here if you think this is the year.

Go here if you read that and said HAHAHAHAHAHAHAhahahaheeheeheeheh.

Do it for the kids!

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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Random Crap

Patience may be a virtue, but it is a virtue that I have never quite managed to master. Case in point: This morning, I got in the car and my windshield was frosted over. The wipers didn’t help and being decidedly impatient, waiting five minutes for the defroster to do its job just wasn’t an option (in my head). Also not my strong suit? Resisting the allure of blaming mr b for things. I was using mr b’s car today. And a couple of months ago, I had bought some de-icer wiper fluid about for both cars. I took care of mine, but he failed to fill his. And somehow the entire bottle has turned up missing. I know! So anyway, clearly, this was ALL HIS FAULT.

So I’m all irritated, blaming him, looking for something to scrape the windshield, which I can’t find because we don’t have an actual scraper (see: de-icer), and we no longer have cd cases in the car (which work great) since it’s mp3 capable. And even though a couple of minutes had passed and it wouldn’t be long before the defroster did its thing, I COULD! NOT! WAIT! So I did what any calm, patient, totally not-crazy person would do – I opened the door and stood next to the windshield, grabbed an old chik-fil-a cup filled with melted ice and coke from the cup holder and THREW IT on the windshield.

Did I mention that I had the wipers on? Yes – in my irrational fury over the stupid frosty windshield, I failed to see what a terrible idea this was. I figured it out just as 20 ounces of stale, watery Coke Zero hit me in the face, hair, shirt, coat, and went down inside my sleeves. The little that stayed on the windshield immediately froze and made things worse than when I started. So five minutes turned into ten. This was also clearly mr b’s fault.

Man, I am SUCH a catch.

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I read recently about some study that showed that when people find an old love, they don’t really care how they look – that when the feelings are strong, you remember the person that they used to be and it overshadows the person they are now. That would explain why I still feel nostalgic for a few old flames, despite the fact that they all seem to look like K-Fed now.
It doesn’t, however, explain why the holy hell all my old boyfriends look like K-Fed now. I imagine that it says something about me, but I’m not sure I want to know what exactly.

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Here’s a little known tip to help you be a good friend: Always have an embarrassing story on hand.

No, really. When something particularly humiliating happens to your friend in your presence, help them out by sharing something even more humiliating that you have experienced.

I save my Pooped in a Bag story for just this purpose.

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How is it that no one has killed that hatemongering cocksucker Fred Phelps yet? I mean, really. It’s not that I’m wishing for his death (though it wouldn’t upset me), I am just amazed that someone as vile as he is still walking around spreading his crazy and NO ONE HAS KILLED HIM! If the Supreme Court rules that he has a right to do what he does, I swear, when someone finally does kill him, I am totally getting a group of people together, renting a bus, and showing up at his funeral with the biggest, billboard-sized picket signs all depicting HARD CORE GAY PORN. Who’s with me?

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The girl sat in the bathtub last night, singing her head off. She is always singing – pop songs, country songs, Grateful Dead songs, kid songs, songs of her own creation – so it took me a few minutes to hear what song it was. It was a song about how she is “A ten year old woman.”

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Oh, and in addition to being a Ten Year Old Woman, she is also apparently Cinderella. She works and works and has to do everything and no one even likes her and why can’t people get her what she wants RIGHT NOW and Oh My God, she just cleaned her room like, two weeks ago – why does she have to do it AGAIN and why am I forcing the HORROR of (her previously favorite) jammies on her when I know that anything other than her Jonas Brothers nightgown will surely KILL HER!

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I saw a headline today that said, “Wine may be good for women’s waistlines.” I clearly don’t drink enough. I’m going to get started on that right away.

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Thursday, March 4, 2010

Teach Your Children Well

Yesterday, a friend of mine checked her 13 year old daughter’s text messages and was shocked to find some sexually explicit texts from a boy. Apparently, he had broken up with her and it started with him basically saying that he just “didn’t want a relationship”, etc, and her not really understanding why. But then he told her he would still be “friends with benefits,” but it had to be a secret – she couldn’t tell anyone. Now here is where the rest of us (not being a teenage girl in this horrible-to-girls society) start hearing the DING DING DING of warning bells going off. Because if a guy wants you to keep your relationship a secret for ANY REASON – he is not the guy for you. But she is a teenage girl, and sadly didn’t tell him to fuck off.

He went on to say that if she didn’t keep it a secret, he would “spread some dirty secret around school that will make everyone hate [her] guts.”

Next, the conversation turned to pretty sexually graphic (especially for 13-14 year olds), and included him trying to pressure her into doing things she clearly is not ready for and that her mom was shocked to read.

Delightful kid, huh?

But the big issue her (for me, at least) is not how much of an asshole this kid is (for the record – big, HUGE asshole), but why on earth would a smart, cute, nice girl like her not see how much of an asshole this kid is? And I think the answer says a lot about teenage girls (and boys).

Teen boys are desperate for sex. Teen girls are desperate for love. This is a dangerous combination. All peppered throughout this conversation was “I love you.” He said it in nearly every text. I love you babe. You can’t tell anyone about us. I love you. I’ll make everyone hate your guts. Baby, I love you. I want you to [insert city sexual act here]. I love you. And sadly, a teenage girl will rarely ever see the threats and pressure and cruelty because they are so blinded by the “I love you.”

And when she put herself down, calling herself fat and ugly, he didn’t tell her she was thin or pretty. He said “I love you.” Which translates to teenage girl speak as “You ARE fat and ugly, but I love you.” Which translates into teenage girl thoughts as “I can’t do better than this guy, so I’ll put up with anything (or DO anything) to keep him. And this makes me so sad.

This kid isn’t bright enough to even realize what he’s doing. Sure – he must know that he is being cruel to her, but I don’t think he could even begin to hatch a plan that involved answering her self-deprecating comments with I love you instead of reassurances, and yet he somehow knows to do it.

Where do boys learn it?? I might be in the dark here, but I am pretty sure there’s no Academy of Manipulation and Cruelty for Teen Boys. And actually, that idea is less offensive to me than the reality – that it comes naturally.

My own Asshole Teenage Boy Story ended OK – but only because I had luck (mine), drunkenness (his), and anger (mine) on my side. But I know that there are many, many girls who have similar stories that didn’t end so well.

Everyone’s first reaction on hearing this kind of stuff is “I’m locking up my daughter!” and understandably so. But what about our sons? Maybe because I have a son this age it hit me, but my first thought was, “I need to talk to my son about this.” We have talked to him about sex, but we need to do more. We need to teach him to be respectful and kind. No matter how uncomfortable it may be to do, we need to teach him whatever it takes so that he is never EVER that kid.

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