Parents Just Don’t Understand

Ducks in a row
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Parents Just Don’t Understand

Yep, you guessed it, I stole the title from DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince’s 1988 song “Parents Just Don’t Understand”.

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But this isn’t a post about Will Smith (Fresh Prince) or Jeff Townes (DJ Jazzy Jeff), it is a post about parents and how poor some are. I’m sitting here watching my annual Christmas movie (Die Hard) and I reflect on something I witnessed today. I was talking to my truck after a fun-filled appointment with my dentist and I saw a mom (I assume it was mom) who had three children with her and they were running through the parking lot, screaming and laughing as if they were playing a game of who gets to the car the fastest gets the front seat. It was a very cold and wet day so anyone driving through the parking lot might have a difficult time seeing these kids and stopping before they hit them. Mom didn’t care less as the two youngest, probably 5 and 3 nearly got hit by an oncoming car. I kept saying to myself, please stop, please stop, thankfully the driver stopped in time, and mom didn’t say anything and she was a good 50 feet behind the kids and had a perfect view of the entire situation.

This is the typical “little duckling” effect that I often witness near the exit doors of the local Walmart. The “little duckling” effect is where mom and or dad are leading the way and the herd of kids behind them each spaced a good 6-10 feet apart. It is as if kids are cheap and you can always make a new one.

My wife and I are just cut from a different cloth. I recall in the fall of 2002 when John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo (the DC Snipers) wreaked havoc for 23 days in the Washington D.C. area. I live near Fredericksburg and there were two shootings in Fredericksburg, one was less than 3 miles away from where we live and the other was a little over 5 miles away. The entire area was on edge as the shooting took place over an area that covered close to 100 miles apart. Some victims were pumping gas, some were walking out of a store, and a middle-school student was shot in the chest as he got off the school.  bus. All the schools were closed and many stores were as well. The police were enforcing roadblocks on major roads and I-95, which is one of the busiest highways in the country.

Alright back to my story, I recall during that time, we needed to get some groceries so we choose the farest Walmart in the area and when we got out of the car, my wife lead the way into the store, she was holding our daughter and our son was next and I brought up the rear, and we all walked signle file. The idea was that if they shot from behind us, that I would take the bullet and my son, wife and daughter would be safe.

When our children were young, we always held their hands when we were in any parking lot. Oh, well, what can you do???

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