If years of watching Law & Order taught me one thing, it’s that parents never know their children as well as they think they do.
When the police question the juvenile suspect’s parents, who wipe the nervous sweat off their hands onto their khakis, Mom and Dad almost always reply, “My son (or daughter) would never do that!”
Then the police track down a gum-chewing kid with a backpack slung over his or her shoulder who paints an entirely different picture of the very same child whose parents swore he or she would never do that.
Note to self: They just might do that.
Speaking of paint, I saw the words “My mom is so proud” spray-painted on a guardrail at a jughandle’s stoplight here in New Jersey yesterday and immediately thought of Law & Order. I’ll bet his (or her) mother thought her child would never do that.
It reminds me of a certain high school soccer team that may or may not have spray-painted some words on the benches at a rival high school soccer team’s field way back in the day. These girls weren’t the type who would do that, and yet they did that. Or maybe they didn’t. They were never caught. Ahem.
Spray-painting is one of the minor things that kids do on “The Stupid Curve,” that period between ages 13 and 20 when they flirt with and sometimes engage in stupid things. Nowadays, they even chronicle said stupid things and post them online for all to see, adding an entirely new level of stupid to the whole shebang.
I am keeping this all in mind as my kids and their friends dive head-first into The Stupid Curve Years, hoping that I’ve instilled enough common sense into them to assure that I won’t have to face any authorities about their poorly chosen actions.
Then again, my kids would never do that. Would yours?