Dear Part Time Father at Blockbuster,
I couldn't help but notice how desperately you were in trying to convince your young son to rent No Country For Old Men. I've actually watched this movie and I was appalled to be witnessing your very un-fatherly actions. I was looking for Once when I overheard this conversation. The boy, must have been 10 years old, maybe 12. I was a fifth grade teacher, so the boy easily looked like he could have been a student of mine. He definitely was not in high school.
Father: Just read the back, this is what I want to see.
Son: But dad, I'm not into it.
Father: You don't know what you are missing. Come on, just read it.
Son: Takes dvd case reluctantly. Glances over the back. This looks dumb. Your lame dad.
Father: Guess I'll watch it on Monday when you go back to your mom's.
Son: So now you are going to be all pissed off at me you're an ass. What a great weekend.
(me, wow...calling his dad an ass, although he has a point!)
Father: Just get the stupid Simpons movie and shut the f@#k up.
Son: Walks away, head down.
I truly had to bite my tongue. Suppress every fiber of my being, to not tell that father what a jack ass he was. First of all, No Country For Old Men, is not appropriate for such a young boy. Maybe, call me crazy, maybe he should be the mature person in the scenario and let his son pick out a more age appropriate film. I am assuming the Simpsons is even questionable at his age.
Or better yet, skip the movies all together. If you spend a limited amount of time with your child maybe a board game would provide an opportunity to have a meaningful conversation. I try not to judge, but sometimes we wonder why young children turn to violence or crime. Obviously part of the problem is children need love and attention, not name calling and being berated over a movie rental choice. Shame on those for not seeing the cues our children drop right in our laps, almost crying out for help.
As I watched the boy leave the store with his dad, his eyes were welled up with tears, he was moping. Clearly his feelings were hurt. I hope for him, his dad was just having a bad moment and I witnessed that fleeting moment.