Ode to Wal-Mart, especially the old dude who slapped a crying kid

September 4th, 2009 by bitch

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Oh, you gotta love Wal-Mart. I know I do. After all, the smell — it’s the same in every store, trust me, The Bitch has done her research — is addictive, kind of like the secret 361 unpronounceable ingredients in every Happy Meal that keep you coming back for more. That smell wafts out through the auto-opening doors (because, ya know, we’re too lazy to actually pull open a door ourselves and instead will LINE UP behind the automatic doors to get inside with the least amount of effort possible), hitting you with a hot, oppressive wave of low expectation. The smell of Wal-Mart reeks with the stench of failure and hopelessness. Like an Atlantic City casino, except with more lighting.

And the people of Wal-Mart, well they’re just all kinds of awesome. Take Robert Stephens, for example (he’s the friendly-looking dude in the photo — charming, isn’t he?), the 61-year old guy who just had it with someone else’s crying toddler in a Georgia Wal-Mart, threatened to shut her up, then later delivered four or five whacks to ensure that she did.

Astoundingly (or maybe not, because people suck), some people are calling for a variety of actions:


2. What kind of parent lets her kid scream in a Wal-Mart, for chrissakes? Go after the mom, it’s clearly her fault!

3. The race thing (eye roll, because you know this guy would have slapped a crying baby giraffe — let alone a kid ‚ black or white — but it happened in Georgia, after all, and since when does Georgia think it’s a crime to whack a little black kid?).

4. Can’t even comment on this, but the title (“Older Gentleman Politely Slaps Stranger’s Crying Baby at Walmart”) and the name of the blog (Christwire.org: Conservative Values for an Unsaved World) are not only big hints but also serve as their own punch lines. WTF?

Last year I had the pleasure to be on an airplane to somewhere. In the back. You know, in steerage. Where the seatback in front of you touches your knees and where you are breathing the person six seats away from you and where the permanent odor of airplane fuel makes your head pound and where you suddenly have an understanding of what it’s like being a cow on a cattle care bound for slaughter and you decide to become a vegetarian on the spot, that is, if you make it out alive. And there was a kid just in front of me. Who screamed. For two hours. His mother, clearly having already lost the power of hearing from having six months before jabbed a fork into her temple thus bursting her eardrum and rendering her into blessed silence, ignored him entirely. He beat his little fists on her, raised the window shade up and down and up and down, and poked his grubby little hand between the seats at me. While screaming.

I sent him psychic darts to explode his little brain and render him unconscious.

As we began our descent, the screamer fell asleep. The entire steerage section relaxed as one. The sky looked bluer. The air smelled less like body odor and the disinfectant used in the toilets. All was well.

And then the little fiend woke up. And started screaming again. And people started looking around for objects — blunt, sharp, whatever — with which to commit seppuku.

I blame the mother. Clearly, she had given up. She let this little tyrant rule not only her, but an entire airplane full of people. It’s not hard to keep a kid occupied on a flight, unless the kid is sick, in which case there’s duct tape and drugs. And if it’s not manipulation and is just a case of not caring about the kid, why not sell him? All sorts of people want to buy kids these days.

I blame the flight attendants. Give the kid a coloring book, or cheap plastic wings to poke his eye out with or something. Make the airplane land in Kansas City and have everyone deplane. Deploy the tranquilizer blow dart gun. Something. But ignoring a screaming kid is ignoring the other 200 passengers.

I blame the kid. Because it’s not that enjoyable to scream for two hours unless you’re paying someone to make you do it. Find something else to do.

I blame the passengers. Not me, of course — I was sending psychic darts, remember? But people look away when there’s a problem. Look away enough and some whack-job like Mr. Wal-Mart Slappy gets involved, and then there’s trouble.

Which brings me back to the Wal-Mart whack-job. Lots of all up-in-yo-face mommas are leavin’ comments all up in yo ass like “If he tried that with my kid I WOULD HAVE KICKED HIS BALLS UP INTO HIS ASS,” and “I would put the beat down on him,” and “He’d be on his way to the morgue if he even flicked a finger at my child.” Way to go, people! Like hitting the old guy is a solution. About as good a solution as hitting the screaming kid was. I’ll bet I know how you handle the discipline at your house!

No, that’s not the answer. But The Bitch has an answer. You want the Short-Term Solution or the Long-Term Solution?

Fine, you can’t decide. I’m feeling generous so you can have them both.

Short-Term Solution for Screaming Wal-Mart Kids

Leave the store. How badly did you need that beef jerky and those Chee-tos, anyway? Also, earplugs. Or, hello, examine why you shop there to begin with. I mean, look deep into your soul and say, “Wal-Mart, how much do I need your soul-sucking presence in my life?”

Long-Term Solution for Screaming Wal-Mart Kids

Once everyone is inside, seal the doors. Identify all the kids. Sedate and tag them with an invisible chip that injects a small amount of a nerve agent that causes temporary paralysis whenever a certain decibel level is reached. Erase the parents’ memories and implant in their brains the ability to parent with the least amount of stupidity possible (results vary). Then, implant a chip inside each employee that causes them, on the store’s anniversary, to appear on the front steps of the Bentonville, Arkansas headquarters and to sing “Feelings” until every employee is paid a fair wage and receives health benefits.

Gives Wal-Mart’s slogan, “Save money. Live better,” a whole new meaning.

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14 Responses to “Ode to Wal-Mart, especially the old dude who slapped a crying kid”

  1. Susan DeAngelis Says:

    I saw your blog on the catelog…. thought I’d stop by.

    Love what I see.

    Susan DeAngelis´s last blog ..Live my life to the What?

  2. Iceman Says:

    just one point, christwire.com is a satire site, over-the-top christan parody.

  3. anonymous interesting person Says:

    LOL Great post!

  4. Daniel Memenode Says:

    I hope NewAgeBitch.com is satire too cause the long term solution is just hilarious. ;)

    For what it’s worth I don’t support any form of violence (except in self defense from it), so I don’t think what this guy did was right nor do I think it’s parent’s duty to slap their kids as a matter of discipline. The solution is far more profound, simple perhaps even if not easy, but unfortunately far too exotic for a lot of the traditionalists and conservatives, but even liberals who seem to have taken a road of total chaos and misunderstanding.

    The solution is to actually try to listen and understand the child and his needs, desires and personality. From day 1 of their life kids are natural scientists who explore with untamed senses, emotions and what thoughts they can muster. They are clean slates which absorb everything around them in full, but also express everything inside of them in full. No bars and no limitations are known. To conquer this by violence is to beat the life out of them and to begin the process of utter dehumanization.

    But to just leave the kid unattended and think you shouldn’t show interest and curiosity while paying attention only to basic and obvious biological needs is bad as well. Instead I think parents should act as genuinely passionate and loving guides to the world that the kid is beginning to experience, nothing more and nothing less. A child should learn the direct reactions of reality to their actions rather than a simulated one-fits-all reaction of a parent’s fist or whip. Parents can emphasize certain reactions over others and time shift them by conditioning their own responses in ways that incentivize desired results (playfulness, calmness or sleep), thus acting as trainers.

    It wont stop kids from crying (and letting them cry is sometimes a good thing), but it will form a base of a healthy relationship in which there will be less and less crying, more laughter and most importantly more mutual understanding. Kids ultimately treat you the way you treat them. And if crying ever happens in public it’s best to either go home ASAP and discover a reason for crying and then decide whether to provide what they are craving or let them cry or provide what they’re craving immediately on the spot if possible if it is a part of your parenting/training strategy.

    Sorry for being so long winded. :S
    Daniel Memenode´s last blog ..The 7-Lesson Schoolteacher

  5. New Age Bitch Says:

    Iceman, Christwire is very badly written satire. And much too close (identical, in many cases) to what people actually think. And the worst part is that many readers can’t tell the difference.

    Daniel, be my dad, pretty please?
    New Age Bitch´s last blog ..Ode to Wal-Mart, especially the old dude who slapped a crying kid

  6. Daniel Memenode Says:

    Haha.. not sure how to respond to that. :D

    Seriously I’m far from ready for parenthood at this point. My sister had an unplanned baby recently with a boyfriend who isn’t a boyfriend anymore and I happen to live with her (moving out soon thankfully) and believe me crying in the other room while I try to concentrate on writing is not pleasant (albeit he’s incredibly cute). I’m not cut out for it yet and I’m not sure I’ll be (but you never know).

    I know the theory, you know, I’ve read stuff and thought a bit about it, but I think when it comes to kids we really gotta know if we really really need to have them and if we’re really really capable of taking care of them right. If not there’s no shame in passing it up, rather it’s a mark of a responsible individual.

    Cheers :)
    Daniel Memenode´s last blog ..The 7-Lesson Schoolteacher

  7. Joel Says:

    “I figure being my fabulous self, in all my completeness and complexity, inspires other people to do the same. And yes, I’m changing the world.”

    How are you changing the world? Self-righteousness doesn’t inspire people… but keep telling that to yourself.

    Just don’t let your insecurities control your life.

  8. bitch Says:

    Joel, we are ALL changing the world with the energy we bring to each interaction. The thing is, we get to choose what sort of energy we bring, and therefore what effect we have. I choose complete and complex. What do you choose? What world are you creating with what you bring to your interactions?

  9. toby Says:

    Thanks for the info, great post
    toby´s last blog ..The fall of the best actor

  10. Daniel Memenode Says:

    I agree, you change the world by being yourself, especially if being yourself means being different and unique. “Be the change you want to see in the world.” — Gandhi. :)
    Daniel Memenode´s last blog ..Being in a Relationship…With Yourself

  11. Monique Says:

    A few Christmas Eve’s ago, I was on a flight, in approximately the same seat you described. Across the aisle was a young mother with a very young baby. The child screamed and screamed and screamed, and I wanted to die. The mother was trying to calm the baby, though, and I eventually asked if there was anything I could do. She explained that her husband was in the army and recently deployed overseas, and she didn’t think she was going to have to fly with the baby all alone for the holidays, and she was really very sorry for the noise. She melted my mean little heart … so even though I want to d-i-e when I hear babies/kids screaming like that, I still think of that poor young mother.
    Monique´s last blog ..Meow

  12. Chris | Martial Development Says:

    NAB, I know you’ve already done your research, but other readers should know about:

    Chris | Martial Development´s last blog ..One Man’s Experience With Spring Forest Qigong

  13. Naveen Says:

    the man looks like he would slap jesus for being late on his second coming :P
    n i prefer the long term solution
    Naveen´s last blog ..Here is my bus !

  14. Sami Says:

    hahahaha thoroughly enjoyed.

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