Wednesday, October 1, 2008


Yesterday I ranted about the lost art of listening. Today, I am going to attempt to locate another seemingly lost concept (I have a whole list, people!) which may or may not be located somewhere near Atlantis and headphone wearing monkeys. It’s hard to know for sure.

Today’s RANTastic topic: Respect. But, you probably already guessed that from the title.

Respect for other people, their beliefs, traditions and ideas and last but not least, respect for what is important in life. I’ll give you a little hint... A elementary school trophy, while nice, is not all that important in the grand scheme of things.

Last night, my son and I were in the car on the way to the mall to buy jeans. He outgrows his clothes and shoes about every two weeks now, but that’s ok. We both dislike shopping, but it gives us some together time to chitchat.

He reminded me that he had a soccer game today and I promised him that I would come see him play. He said I didn’t have to because they would probably lose due to a lot of the kids on the team not attending school. It is Rosh Hashanah and Eid ul-Fitr, the Muslim holiday marking the end of Ramadan.

Side note #1) We live in a very diverse area and a lot of the kids on the soccer team are probably observing one of those holidays and #2) It's nice to win, but I don't care if they lose.

The diversity here thrills me because my children have grown incredibly respectful of other’s beliefs and cultural traditions. My son's mind is growing as fast as his feet and he has noticed that while on the surface these things may appear incredibly different, they really aren’t. Like me, he is finding people as a whole to be quite similar despite superficial differences and recognizing that it's in individuals where there’s a whole lotta “assing” going on.

Back to the story....My son then said that there was a chance the kids might show up because the coach told the kids to ask their parents if they could go to school instead of observing a religious holiday. You know, so that they could be allowed to play in the soccer game and then they would win.

Wait a minute! The coach wants the kids to ask their parents to interrupt a religious holiday and precious time spent with extended families and close friends for an 8th grade soccer game? (sigh. these things never cease to amaze me)

My son said yes, but...(ahhh, there’s always a butt) only because they are undefeated.

Of course! What was I thinking? An undefeated 8th grade soccer team certainly should take precedent over thousands of years of faith, tradition and family. Now I know what is wrong with me and why things get under my skin like they do. I’ve had my priorities completely ass-backwards all these years!

First thing Christmas morning, I’m going to drop my son off on the field. I’m sure the coach will be there, right? Nothing could be more important than winning a game, kicking each other in the shins and time spent trash talking another team.

Some people might see the coach’s request as a silly, maybe even thoughtless little slip of the tongue. I wish I did, but I don’t. I see that kind of request as a total lack of respect towards anything that he personally doesn’t believe and that is interfering with the school's desire to have boast an undefeated soccer team. More than likely, someone above him is rolling a marble down his butt crack to make sure it happens. They put signs up on the street for these things around here. It’s like a badge of honor or something. Too bad so much disrespect goes into getting it.

I see it all the time. My daughters’ egocentric jackass of a coach doesn’t care who’s feelings he has to hurt or anything about the insane demands he makes on the kids so that the school can make Nationals.

This one is my personal favorite. It came home on the “cheerleading expectations” agreement form. “You are allowed to miss one and only one practice during the year for a family event.”

I don't know about you, but I would be so proud to have one of my children, years from now, say something like “I missed being at my grandmother’s 97th birthday/Cousin’s First Communion/Niece’s Baptism/Sister’s Wedding/Uncle’s Funeral/Brother’s Graduation/Fill In The Blank, BUTT it’s totally ok, because instead, a group of kids tossed me up into the air and I didn’t fall on my head and just look at this shiny ribbon they gave me!” (just to clarify, yes, I am being sarcastic.)

It’s easy to manipulate children into thinking something is more important than it is, but why can’t some people see how just ass-inine (yes, this word is intentionally misspelled) this is?

I’m mortified by the moronic and disrespectful ways people act in so many ways (making disrespectful requests and not listening are just two) that I’m thinking of having a contest which hopefully, might make people think a bit.

It will be called: Just how self-centered and disrespectful of an ass can one be?

I guarantee fierce competition and I haven’t quite worked out all the details yet, but I have selected the following prizes:
Third place will be awarded a “fanny” pack. 

The second place winner will receive a “rump” roast. 

The ultimate “Hot Patootie” winner will receive a BUTTon with a big, red letter “A” on it.

No, not A for adultery, A for ass. Sometimes I think it’s a shame they stopped doing that whole scarlet letter thing. At least you’d know who you who you were dealing with right up front.

It certainly would make life a whole lot less complicated, no?


Crystal said...

Don't forget a big fat "S" for stupid.

I'm totally with you on this. People don't know the meaning of respect anymore. I find it quite unfortunate that they put SO much importance on kids' sporting events. I'm not against them by any means... but geez, can't a kid be a kid anymore? Sure, if they want to go to practice and play, GOOD, more power to them... but only allowing them to miss ONE practice for family events?

That is bull, pure and simple.

I've also found that it seems the louder people scream "tolerance!!!" the less tolerant they are themselves. If you look closely, they're really only tolerant (and what kind of nasty word is that, anyway? Who wants to be "tolerated"?!) of their choice pet causes.

Blah. People suck.

The Rock Chick said...

Crystal: you make me smile :)

Dustin said...

Crystal makes me smile to :)

You know, I am also sick and tired of people forcing misplaced priorities on other people. People are so self-centered these days, it's amazing the world hasn't shattered into billions of little pieces that are all revolving around some egocentric lunatic who is convinced that's what the entire globe is actually doing at this moment.

It's too easy to prey on the kids with this kind of "tolerant" intolerance. They want to be able to be on the team - coach doesn't want them to miss practice...boom, you can miss ONE practice. Any more than that and your family is obviously more important to you than the almighty coach and you're not worthy to stay on the team.

I feel like being creatively insulting...

People like that are more disgusting than a bubbling bucket of boiling lung butter.


The Rock Chick said...

Dustin: that's quite an image! Unfortunately, they are everywhere. I know better, but it bugs the heck out of me when people try to influence my kids with this nonsense.