Tonight, we dine in Hoboken

Saw 300 this past weekend.  I went in expecting prettiness and lots of Heroic Last Stands, and that’s exactly what I got, so I was happy with it.

Wasn’t so happy with the theater-going experience, though.  Two rows in front of us there was a kid, who looked to be around 8, playing his gameboy DS.  For the entire movie.

Now look, we have kids.  I know how hard it is to get out and see a movie when you have kids.  I’m not unsympathetic.

With that out of the way:  First of all, you don’t bring an eight year old kid to see 300.  I don’t care if your parental standards differ, blah blah blah; I’m gonna make a moral judgment here and say your standards are wrong.  Can’t find a baby sitter?  That sucks. I’ve been there.  You know what I did?  I stayed homeSuck it up.

Second, if you must bring your kid to a gorefest like 300, the least you can do is make him observe some common courtesy.  And again, I am not one of those single jackasses who gets offended every time a child makes his or her presence known in public.  I have a very high tolerance for screaming toddlers in restaurants.  When I go to Star Wars MXVLIII: The Feckless Director, I go prepared to contend with the constant babble of a hundred preteens on candy-fueled sugar high.  What I am saying is that there is a time and a place.   And if an R-rated movie is the place, then it is time to tell your kid to stop making bright flashing lights directly under the screen, or else it’s going to become Daddy’s Gameboy.

So I did something very out of character: I actually yelled (well, stage-whispered) at a kid in a movie theater.  Which produced the satisfying result of having the kid and his family look back at me momentarily, and then go right back to what they were doing.

I couldn’t be sure, but it appeared to be the kid’s mom who, periodically throughout the movie, leaned over to compliment some particularly impressive feat of Pokemon wrangling.  Way to reinforce good behavior.  You can do it, son!  You can catch ’em all before King Leonidas delivers his final speech!



Finally started working out again this morning, after almost a month and a half off.  I didn’t actually get much done; a lot of time was spent just straightening out the basement after the twin disasters of flooding and new equipment assembly.  There was a lot of trial and error with the power cage; lifting barbells is very different from lifting dumbells.


Got into another stupid argument about sex last night.  You can’t imagine until you’re married how much it’s possible to argue about doing something you both enjoy.  It’s crazy, like yelling at each other about eating ice cream.


The new car has infused me with [greater than normal] roadtrip fever.  Anyone within roadtripping distance (i.e. 1.5hrs < ETA < 6hrs) want a visit?  Preferably not involving the Baltimore/Washington corridor, because then it would feel too much like work.
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  1. Kids in theatres..

    Your complaints are 100% valid…

    you don’t even have to get moralistic about it.. a kid should not be taken to 300 not only because of the gore–but because HE/SHE ISN’T LIKELY TO GET IT OR EVEN ENJOY IT!

    if your kid has to play with a Gameboy at an R rated movie, they shouldn’t be there. It’s utterly ridiculous.

    Find a baby sitter, join a babysitting coop, or have one parent stay home..

  2. That really burns me up too.

    “Ms. G… Dad took us to Hussle and Flow.”


    Or you better believe I shot and evil death look at the kids next to me in “Children of Men” That film was SO upsettingly violent that I cried.

    I am all for allowing parents and families to make their own choices, but unfortunately some people are so stupid that we have to encourage and educate them about what the right choices are. There is research done about children who watch extremely violent things. Id like to see that be shared in public service announcements. Seriously, what is the rationale behind bringing your children to a movie that is R? What R rated movie is EVER appropriate for an 8 year old – or a 12 year old for that matter.

    1. What R rated movie is EVER appropriate for an 8 year old – or a 12 year old for that matter.

      Having children in that range (11 and 12), I believe we have shown them R-rated films. I can’t recall which ones, at the moment. And I can’t say we have hard and fast rules for deciding whether they can see it or not. It’s more of a judgment call on an individual basis.

      But we have relatively “odd” parenting values, too. For instance, I don’t particularly care if the kids are exposed to a lot of foul language. People use those words. WE use those words, from time to time. I don’t believe, as some parents seem to, that there is inherent “badness” in a word. I don’t feel like the word “fuck” is going to hurt their development in any way. They understand that they live in a world where they will be ostracized if they use expletives at their age, and they behave accordingly. On the other hand, if a movie contained a lot of dialog which was, for instance, specifically degrading to women, I would hesitate to bring them to it.

      Likewise with sex and nudity… sex happens, it’s a good thing, and as long as it’s portrayed fairly positively I don’t have a big problem with them being exposed to it. And nudity I couldn’t care less about; I don’t see any reason at all to carry on the ridiculous tradition of feeling uncomfortable with the naked human form.

      Violence is another story, though. We avoid showing them movies which glorify violence, because I do believe that over time seeing that can numb kids to the sanctity of human life, and/or numb their sense of sympathy. Even then, it’s a judgment call; there’s a big difference in my mind between a historical war movie which shows just how awful war can be, and something like Sin City in which violence is practically used as an art form, completely divorced from human feeling.

  3. I see so much bad parenting lately..Maybe I’m just more sensitive to it I don’t know but it makes me wonder is it really THAT hard? I don’t know it just seems like so many people are like learning disabled when it comes to parenting. Why do so many people seem to not get that when your child starts screaming for something that’s not when you give it to them? Either just give it to them before they resort to such unaccpetable behavior or don’t give it to them. Don’t teach them they can get what they want as long as they’re willing to scream. I don’t just see this in public either so it’s not a worry about discipling in public issue.

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