Thursday, July 31, 2008

Jiggety Jig

As in home again home again, except for I'm not really home but at my mother's which means that I'm not even at my mother's but at the Panera with free wifi nearby because I cannot abide by my mother's dial-up connection.

At any rate. The point here is this. I have been to Lebanon, and now I have returned. I will do real posting about my travels in the coming days, but first, some reflections on traveling in general.
  • JFK is a despicable airport and I will stay home rather than ever fly through that particular place again.
  • Delta is a despicable airline and I will stay home rather than ever fly Delta again.
  • Yes, I plan on writing lengthy letters of disapproval to the FAA, JFK, and Delta, expressing my displeasure.
  • In other complaining news, might I just say that while I sympathize with people who travel with small children because it's not easy and dude, sometimes kids cry and stuff and I do not judge parents for that happening, I do totally judge parents when their children (a), climb on top of me when I'm trapped in the middle seat of a plane, (b) pinch me, (c) bang on an airport bench repeatedly during a flight delay knocking into it with all of their force while adults who've been traveling for approximately 20 hours bite their tongues, or (d) kick the back of an airplane seat that is occupied by a person. The point here is that parents in that situation need to tell their children to knock it off and to make sure that it happens. Sure, kids will be kids, but this is allowing your children to be disrespectful (and in some cases violent) to strangers. This is, in a word, bullshit. And fuck my ethical duty to children who are the future and to being supportive of parents. This sort of behavior is unacceptable, and if your kids are doing it and you do nothing, then you are a shitty parent. Period.
  • I actually don't have jetlag. Perhaps I should thank the idiotic operations of Delta and JFK for keeping me up until a reasonable bedtime, even though I gained 7 hours coming here? No, I do not think they deserve my thanks.
  • You'd think that I wouldn't be so complainy, but it is my way, given the fact that On July 30 I left the house at about 5:30 Beirut time, and I only arrived at my parents' at 1:30 AM Eastern time on July 31. You'd be bitchy, too.
However, let me give you a little taste of the wonders of my trip. Here's a picture of the view from the back balcony of the house of one of my relatives. Un-be-freakin'-lievable. Totally. The trees in the foreground all bear fruit, incidentally, and though it's tough to tell in this picture, the blue immediately past the buildings in the distance is the Mediterranean.

I'm a very, very lucky girl to have gone on this trip. Even though I was annoyed at times, but I'll talk about that later, too.

At any rate, regular blogging shall likely resume Sunday.


Terri said...

Yeah! So glad you are home--have missed your cyber-voice.

Rhonda said...

I'm glad to see your blog pop up in the feed reader again! As I read the post, though, my heart sank, because next week, I'm flying coast to coast -- on Delta -- with a small child.

Ah, well. At least not through JFK.

Hope to hear more about the trip very soon!

Anonymous said...

Delta sucks.

I'm going to stop myself from responding to your commentary on childrearing because I like you.

Sybil Vane said...

This sort of behavior is unacceptable, and if your kids are doing it and you do nothing, then you are a shitty parent. Period.

I've done 24 hours of traveling many many times and wow does it suck, but holy shit this is an obnoxious thing to say.

k8 said...

Glad you're back!

I love kids and I totally get where you're coming from. There's a huge difference between the parents who let their kids run wild and those that at least try to teach their kids to behave in public. Sure, they'll act up, but it doesn't meant that parents should ignore the bad behavior. I'm much more sympathetic if the parents make an effort.

My parents would have never let me get away with acting out like that in public (or at home, for that matter). But then, my siblings and I got in trouble for saying "shut up" because it is rude.

PowerProf said...

JFK sucks watermelon through a straw. If you have an option, always choose Newark -- it's actually less time to the city and I imagine a much better stop than JFK.

Traveling with kids must be a nightmare - but those who implement some basic standards and rules in daily life are less likely to have kids who go bonkers while traveling. It does say something abot parenting.

Terri said...

Ugh! Just lost my post. . starting over. . .

Doesn't Crazy deserve a more generous reading here? I'm sure if the beleaguered parent had glanced her way with the "I'm sorry" look, or at least showed an effort to curb monster-like behavior, that Crazy would have been sympathetic. It's not like she was asking for a public flogging or anything. She is simply saying that parents are responsible for their children.

And it is absolutely irritating when a parent is unwilling or unable to deal with their children's aggressive, disruptive, bad behavior. I find myself avoiding playdates with such "situations" because 1) I can't stand watching the kid kick/hit/scream obscenities at the parent with no consequences and 2) I don't want my kid getting any ideas.

Finally, aren't our (upper/middle class?) childrearing practices a little fucked up? I mean, we give up living rooms for their playrooms, decorate their bedrooms for their specific tastes, spend $100 to take them to their favorite concerts (please help me, i have done this!) blah blah blah. . .

But if my kid kicks someone (or someone's airline seat) I will make it clear to her that it is "unacceptable," and will make sure it doesn't happen again.

Now if you'll excuse me I have to go cut the crust off my daughter's heart-shaped organic grilled cheese sandwich.

Dr. Crazy said...

Am home! In my actual home! Though blogging will be fairly light I think for the next few days, which I'll explain in an actual post.

And yes, I was totally venting about some specific incidents that happened with 3 children (of the many, many children on the planes on which I was flying) I encountered during my travels. I think I lost all patience I had on the way back when that little kid pinched me and the mom didn't even blink at the child. Again, I'm not saying that I expect that kids will be perfect little angels on planes - just that they won't fucking *hurt* me. This is *not* too much to ask. And yes, if your kid is pinching strangers and you don't do anything about it AT ALL, then that is a problem. I stand by that. To say it isn't obnoxious, nor is it meant as an attack on all parents. I can't *imagine* how hard it is to travel with kids, and I'm really quite sympathetic to what that must be like. Except when I am pinched. But then, I don't like being pinched under any circumstances. Call me crazy. Oh, that's right. You do :)

More pictures, and an explanation of light blogging, forthcoming.

Inside the Philosophy Factory said...

i agree with Crazy -- no matter what, parents shouldn't stand by when their child HARMS some stranger. Pinching is harming -- and if the parent can't control the kid -- frankly they ought to stay home until they can. I'm ok saying that, having encountered way too many out of control kids and their obnoxious parents...

The fact of the matter is that kids are being raised by parents -- and it is up to those parents to teach them how to act in public -- in all situations. This is often tedious and hard, but it is also a large part of being a parent....