Social Question

zenvelo's avatar

What do you think of this guy's actions?

Asked by zenvelo (39410points) August 10th, 2014

The man here decided to teach a “bratty” child and his unminding mom a lesson.

Do you agree or disagree with his approach? Do you think it made either the mom or the child mindful of their behavior?

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118 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

I applaud this man.

hominid's avatar

Two children walk into a BK and have a temper tantrum. One walks out with 23 pies and a puzzling lack of humiliation.

dappled_leaves's avatar

I found it hard to sympathize with the guy who bought the pies, after reading only these stories like the one you posted from The Examiner. However, on reading his full explanation (i.e., the original Reddit post that spawned all these clickbait “articles”), I can’t blame him for doing what he did.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

How are we even sure that this even happened?
Yes, because who would ever dare to go on the internet and tell lies~

elbanditoroso's avatar

I’m with the guy- let’s call him Mr. Pie-man.

Mother should have controlled her kid.

hominid's avatar

@Michael_Huntington – Whether or not this really happened – what did happen was that a guy claims to have had this experience and goes to r/offmychest and brags…

“All I can think of is how the people behind me ruined my splurge and gave me this headache. I then decide to ruin their day.”

…and somehow the discussion turns into one about parenting. This guy describes how he allowed his mindlessness to get away from him, felt victimized, and then effectively shat on himself. And he has some level of expectation that he to be applauded. We have a story – true or not – of a manchild who represents everything we loathe about people, including ourselves.

jca's avatar

Did it teach the kid a lesson? No.

Did it make the guy feel better to spite the mom, the kid and act like a spiteful child himself? Yes.

is it a free country and can the guy buy the pies in good conscience, if he had the money? Yes.

The story makes it to social media. Did it really happen? Maybe, maybe not. Maybe it’s just something someone dreamed up to start some blog and comment activity.

hominid's avatar

Reading the guy’s post again. Wow.

@guy: “So a while ago I had decided to treat myself and go to Burger King. I hadn’t had the greatest of days and I had a headache coming on.”

Immediately we are told that there are sensations he is experiencing that will color his experience. Having had a bad day and has a headache “coming on”, he is able to articulate this, and should be enough warning to proceed mindfully.

What does he decide to do? He chooses to go to BK. To fix a headache and treat yourself? This is like saying that you are tired of seeing people hitting their kids, so you decide to go to Walmart. Undeterred by the apparent awareness of his headache and “bad day”, he ventures in.

@guy: “It was a very long line and I was at the end of it waiting patiently.”

The first thing he is met with during this experience to treat himself and take care of his headache is a long line. But he is supposedly fine, so he waits “patiently”.

@guy: “When behind me comes this woman yapping on her cellphone with a little monster of a child.”

This is BK stuff, right? What could this possibly have to do with the guy? I’ll repeat, he is in BK. It reminds me of the old convenience store thread.

@guy: ”[...snip description of awful kid…] After about 5 minutes of the line with these people behind me, I had gone from a headache to a full on migraine”

While this is a story describing the events, I’m left wondering if he aware of his own emotions and headache while they were happening. It appears that he was not.

@guy: ”, but nothing was going to stop me from getting those burgers. I calmly turn and ask her nicely if she can please calm or quiet her child down.”

His head hurts, he’s had a bad day, and he’s feeling pretty bad. But rather than try to determine what he can do about this, he enters a place where he has absolutely no control and has no problem when his mind demands control. He wants things to be one way, yet they are another. This is very common. But he is so unaware of this process that he believes the problem lies outside of his mind. He believes it is with the child and the mom. They are not the problem.

Note: They clearly have their own problems, and they are suffering in their way. But they are not @guy’s problems. @guy and child-with-tantrum seem to be both experiencing the same problem. Child is having a tantrum. But how do adults have tantrums? I suspect we’ll see…

@guy: ”[...snip more irrelevant descriptions of bad behavior and bad parenting…] Things immediately go back to the they were and I wait another 5 minutes before getting to the front of the line. It turns out it was so slow because they had 1 trainee on cash during the lunch hour rush.”

Again, some part of him must have been aware that these conditions which he had no control of were having an effect on him. Yet at no point did he have the capacity to pause and catch a glimpse of his real predicament.

@guy: “All I can think of is how the people behind me ruined my splurge and gave me this headache.”

This reads like either the first line of a Glen Beck “I’m a victim” rant or a quote describing delusion.

@guy: “I then decide to ruin their day.”

And here we have it. This is what makes this story so awful. It’s not enough that his lack of awareness of his own mind would allow this guy to suffer so much while standing in line to purchase a hamburger. He needs to spread this pain and misery. We all do it from time to time. But here is a man who had a moment to contemplate the situation and his reaction. And rather than have any insight or even questions about how he could have approached that situation different – say, with compassion (for himself and the people behind him), he seemed to feel that passing on misery was good for him.

It’s a celebration of vengeance and delusion.

kevbo's avatar

But most days, if you’re aware enough to give yourself a choice, you can choose to look differently at this fat, dead-eyed, over-made- lady who just screamed at her little child in the checkout line — maybe she’s not usually like this; maybe she’s been up three straight nights holding the hand of her husband who’s dying of bone cancer, or maybe this very lady is the low-wage clerk at the Motor Vehicles Dept. who just yesterday helped your spouse resolve a nightmarish red-tape problem through some small act of bureaucratic kindness. Of course, none of this is likely, but it’s also not impossible — it just depends on what you want to consider. If you’re automatically sure that you know what reality is and who and what is really important — if you want to operate on your default-setting — then you, like me, will not consider possibilities that aren’t pointless and annoying. But if you’ve really learned how to think, how to pay attention, then you will know you have other options. It will actually be within your power to experience a crowded, loud, slow, consumer-hell-type situation as not only meaningful but sacred, on fire with the same force that lit the stars — compassion, love, the sub-surface unity of all things. Not that that mystical stuff ‘s necessarily true: The only thing that’s capital-T True is that you get to decide how you’re going to try to see it. You get to consciously decide what has meaning and what doesn’t. You get to decide what to worship…

dappled_leaves's avatar

@hominid The guy bought some pies. The child will suffer a minor disappointment (so, no real impact, since the child appears to live disappointment), and the woman will have to deal with the screaming child (so, no real impact, since the child appears to scream constantly, anyway).

Let’s not make this into more than it is. The guy did not fire a weapon, or call the authorities, or complain, or even make a small scene. I don’t think the incident deserves to be parsed with this kind of depth. He didn’t “throw a tantrum” or “shit on himself”; he is not a “manchild” and doesn’t deserve loathing. Ok, he reacted dishonourably to a dishonourable situation. But he’s not a symbol of everything that is wrong with humanity. Jeez.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I kinda like it!

livelaughlove21's avatar

I doubt it made the kid or the mom more mindful of their actions (stupid people typically remain stupid), but that guy is simply fantastic and I really hope the story is true.

“The user turned around to kindly ask the woman if her child could stop screaming. She told him not to tell her how to raise her child and got back on her cell phone.”

After that, I would’ve done the same thing he did. Only I would’ve knelt down in front of the kid, pulled out a pie, and eaten it slowly with plenty of “mmm” noises while he cried. Then I’d stand up, laugh in mom’s face, and be on my merry way.

If my kid was throwing a fit and yelling that he wanted some “fucking pie,” a fucking pie is the last thing that little shit would be getting.

Dutchess_III's avatar

I agree @livelaughlove21. That would be the last thing my kid would get. But eating the pie in front of him, well, the thing is, at that point in his young life it’s not even the kid’s fault. I mean, where did he learn the word “fucking,” and how to use it in a sentence?

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III Don’t care, don’t care. I know it’s the mother’s fault, but she clearly isn’t going to teach this kid a lesson, so I’d get my satisfaction out of it in my own way.

…I’m not a fan of kids anyway.

ucme's avatar

Haha, reminds me of Falling Down.

Dutchess_III's avatar

But it wouldn’t really teach the kid a single thing. Not without an explanation of what the kid did wrong. Without the explanation it’s just reinforcing the kid’s idea of how to mock and be mean, which he already knows.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III I never said I’d be teaching him anything. That’s not my job. My actions would be purely for my own satisfaction.

Dutchess_III's avatar

Well, but you would be teaching him, whether you mean to or not. You would be reinforcing what he’s been taught already, to be rude, petty and mean.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@Dutchess_III Again, don’t care. Not my kid, not my job.

Michael_Huntington's avatar

All right, assuming that this is true, it’s still kinda petty. I wonder how many people here would have the cojones to do the same (the answer is a big fat zero).
And my beef with the story about being true or not is how the public is willing to accept questionable information from such shite sources.

Dutchess_III's avatar

This is making the rounds…I wonder if any parents who have bratty kids recognizes themselves in this?

hominid's avatar

@dappled_leaves: “The guy bought some pies. The child will suffer a minor disappointment (so, no real impact, since the child appears to live disappointment), and the woman will have to deal with the screaming child (so, no real impact, since the child appears to scream constantly, anyway).

This is in no way related to the kid and mother. The harm in celebrating delusion and vengeance is to be seen elsewhere (like reddit, here, or as a cumulative cause-and-effect similar to what this guy describes “happening” to him).

@dappled_leaves: “Let’s not make this into more than it is.”

I see very few things more important than this. How we interact with other people – either through vengeance or compassion – has real-world consequences.

@dappled_leaves: “The guy did not fire a weapon, or call the authorities, or complain, or even make a small scene.”

He had a minor meltdown, like we all do. The real scene here is, in my opinion, is his telling of this tale on reddit, and the reactions to it.

@dappled_leaves: “I don’t think the incident deserves to be parsed with this kind of depth. He didn’t “throw a tantrum” or “shit on himself”; he is not a “manchild” and doesn’t deserve loathing. Ok, he reacted dishonourably to a dishonourable situation. But he’s not a symbol of everything that is wrong with humanity. Jeez.”

When I read it, I could relate. His experience is so very human. But the story doesn’t contain a “here’s what I learned” moment. It provided no insight, and his actions were not portrayed as an analysis of the activities of the mind. Rather, it was portrayed as a child may (“He ruined my lego creation, so I ruined his.”). And his tantrum was of the big boy type. It cost him the price of 23 pies. But rather than feel embarrassed and describe it as the day that he had a little tantrum, it cost him x$, and he learned nothing from it, the story reads as a “like a boss” story.

So the celebration of vengeance – even ineffective vengeance like this case – is itself the fuel that feeds all of the things that make people so difficult and our lives so challenging. He wasn’t aware that the woman and her shitty kid is not why his life is not the way he wishes it were. But rather than be what he wish things would be like, he decides to be spread that vengeance out into the world, where it influences some other situation, and so on.

What if he had left? What if he had some tools to deal with a stressful life that is out of control? What if he had chosen compassion?

And while everyone loves to discuss this horrible woman and her nasty kid, he knew and knows nothing about them. Nothing. He made up all kinds of things based on what he heard while experiencing a bad day with a headache in a really slow line in BK. Whatever he thinks he can say about her parenting is pure delusion. Whatever he thinks he can judge her by is again delusion and storytelling.

We interact with people with our own ideas of what we think they are, who they are, what they are about, what their values are, what their experiences are, and what they are going through.

The guy who sits next to me at work was on a conference call on Thursday with some clients. They were shitting all over him and threatening to get him fired. He sat there and took it. Was he incompetent and had he not met their needs for software deployment? I don’t know. But what I do know is that right next to his speakerphone is a photo of a 15-year-old boy. His son was murdered at his high school by an older student who had wanted to feel what it felt like to kill someone. He chose my coworker’s son, who he had never met before, just because he was the first person he saw that morning.

Every single person we come into contact with, whether driving, in line at BK, or elsewhere is someone who experiences pain, loss, and happiness just like us. They are not extras that get in our way from getting home on time or getting our hamburger without a headache. And we have no idea what they have been through or what they are going through.

But we can control (to whatever degree you want to apply free will here) or own awareness and responses. We can decide to be generous, give the benefit of the doubt, and be compassionate. This stuff spreads the positive as well as a bad attitude or vengeance perpetuates the negative.

This guy’s story is a celebration of remaining deluded and exacting vengeance. Our reaction can spark legitimate discussions about our values and our willingness to accept ignorance and delusion.

dappled_leaves's avatar

@hominid “But the story doesn’t contain a “here’s what I learned” moment.”

That’s all I’m trying to say to you. You’re trying to draw more of a lesson from this than is actually available. And I think you’ll notice that I never advocated “celebrating vengeance”.

jonsblond's avatar

I see very few things more important than this. How we interact with other people – either through vengeance or compassion – has real-world consequences.

I agree with this and everything else @hominid has said.

This would not be a story if a little old grandmother had turned around and tried a friendly approach (like so many do when they are met with a screaming child in a long line) by being nice to the young boy and taking his attention away from a fucking pie.

longgone's avatar

Wow. This guy is supposed to be a hero? No. He’s the brat. Taking his anger out on a child who, likely, has a pretty difficult life already…what a genius.

Pachy's avatar

If you ask me, I say the man who bought the pies is the real child here.

hud's avatar

The non violent beauty of the free market

Dutchess_III's avatar

I’ll speak for Auggie here, because I posted the same question on fb and she responded: “He’s a dick.”

snowberry's avatar

If I were in that man’s shoes I wouldn’t have done the same, but I wouldn’t have minded if it were my grandchild was acting that way and someone had done it to him. I wouldn’t have stood in line that long if it had been me with my own kid. In fact, We’ve walked away from so many fun activities because my kid(s) was/were acting up.

eno's avatar

The young boy is clearly a brat, but this guy buying all the pies isn’t going to teach this brat a lesson, although, it may teach the mother a lesson to discipline her kid. What the guy should have done is call the cops on the mother for disturbing the peace, especially since the mother could have done something about the disturbance. This, in turn, would teach the mother a lesson to teach her kid that there are boundaries and certain boundaries cannot be crossed. Teaching manners would probably help too.

jonsblond's avatar

Call the cops would be a waste of police resources @eno.

Berserker's avatar

@Michael_Huntington Yeah, there’s so much bs on the internet, and I notice that FB is especially good at handing out misinformation and fallacies. Sure this can easily be true. But I ask myself, who the fuck has enough money to just buy all that stuff like that?
And if you have more money than the average shmuck, you’re probably not eating at fucking BK’s.

jca's avatar

@eno; The cops would take about 20 minutes to get there and by then, the mom and kid would probably be gone. The cops would go off, I repeat, go off, on the guy for calling for something stupid like the mom is being loud and the kid is being loud. Is that worthy of a 911 call? The guy might end up getting charged for using police resources for something non-emergency.

eno's avatar

Actually, average response time is around 9–10 minutes. Also, the line was slow and they would probably be eating inside the restaurant.

Disturbing someone else’s peace is a crime. If the cops were to go off on the guy who called, or charge the guy for “wasting resources”. then not only would the cops be fired, the city would be sued for a lot of money.

I’ve seen it first hand, on more than one occasion. The last time was in my neighborhood when loud kids were disturbing the residents, the cops were called, they gave a lecture to the parents, and we haven’t heard a peep since. If the cops were called in this pie incident, you wouldn’t have this brat and incompetent mother bothering anyone in the future.

Is it worth it? Absolutely. The result is one less brat and incompetent parent to deal with in this world. There are people out there who value peace and expect it as a taxpayer. Furthermore, there are people out there who hate brats and if the parents are incompetent to teach their children not to be brats, law enforcement is necessary.

jca's avatar

@eno: The cops would say first you should take it up with the management of the establishment, not call 911, which should be for more serious issues, not some bullshit like a crying child.

livelaughlove21's avatar

If you called 911 and told the dispatcher there was a crying child at Burger King, I’m pretty sure his or her first response would be, “okaaaay….?”

What a stupid reason to call the cops.

JLeslie's avatar

I have my doubts that this is a real story, but for the sake of argument I’ll role with it. I wish I knew the child’s age, because it might make a difference in my response.

I have no problem with the man buying all the pies. I have a little problem with him taking a bite in front of the mother and child in a mocking way, because it comes off as so childish and demonstrates he bought the pies out of revenge, not to try and teach the mother and child their behavior is unacceptable. He ruined it with that last act before leave the restaurant.

Let me back track a little. I personally almost never get annoyed with children crying or becoming obstanant. I have total sympathy for parents, because even the best ones sometimes have a child that freaks out, or finds themselves in a situation they did not plan for and the child might be hungry, uncomfortable, or bored and start melting down. However, I can also tell when a child is not really upset, but just turning on the water works, and when an infant just needs to be picked up or held. I try to remind myself that maybe the mom’s back is hurting so badly she just can’t lift the baby in that moment and is doing her best.

Back to the pies, the man turned to her and asked her to quiet the child, and I hate her response that she said don’t tell her how to raise her kid and talked on her phone. The child was swearing and carrying on. Unless that was an emergency call, part of the child’s brattiness is the mom is not paying attention to her child. Also, it was her opportunity to say, “see you are bothering people around us, if you don’t stop behaving badly the restaurant people are going to kick us out and we won’t be able to buy any McDonald’s food.” Children challenge their parents all the time, but when they are not aware or even a little afraid of adults around them dissapproving of their behavior, when they know they are behaving badly, I think there is something seriously missing. For instance, when I worked at Bloomingdales and a child was playing on an escalator I told the child to stop. The child directly. Most parents were glad I said something, and even used it as a way to control their child. Some children didn’t care what I said, but most did. They were doing it right in front of their mom half the time, so their mom was either stupid, or was not being effective at controlling her child. Like I said, I have total sympathy for parents; sometimes children just don’t listen, they challenge how far they can push.

The big problem is the mother, not the child. This has nothing to do with the child in my mind, except that he is being raised by someone who is self absorbed if we go by this one moment in time. The mother needs to learn that you need to consider other people and maybe it was a lesson to her that you can only be so self absorbed, eventually someone will get annoyed and do something to try and teach you a lesson. Was she going to buy the pie for her cursing child demanding the pie? That would not have helped the child learn to ask politely.

Edit: I want to add that I never would have said something to the mother or child in this particular situation. I seriously doubt the child’s ranting would have bothered me so much that I would say something. The only time I say anything to a mom or someone else’s child is when I think something is dangerous, or if I think I can be helpful in some way.

eno's avatar


If it is in a restaurant, then you’re right. First you handle the situation yourself. If the mother won’t budge, you tell management, and if management can’t get in under control, you can call the cops or management can.

If it is outside of an establishment, then you skip step 2. There is actually another option that I witnessed and then looked it up. You can make a “private citizens arrest”, but it is more nuanced.


It is a stupid reason for you/or the dispatcher because it doesn’t bother you. Why do you think disturbing someone’s peace is against the law? It has nothing to do with physical disturbance. It is designed for such situations. Again, there are people who enjoy the peace and expect it everywhere they go.

Why would they care what the cops think is stupid or whether resources are “wasted”. You actually have to not care about the peace or laws to talk like that in the first place, hence, your response. The cops have to do there job. If they give you any lip and become unhelpful, then like I said earlier, they would be fired and the city would be sued for hiring incompetent police and not upholding the law.

livelaughlove21's avatar

Who knew I could call the cops whenever I’m annoyed by someone in public? I’ll get right on that, because just walking away from it and going on with my life is way too simple – the police must be involved in situations such as these.

I’m bothered by people in public quite often, so I think the local police officers and I are about to develop a close relationship.

If the cops take too long, I can just arrest them myself (and watch them laugh in my face). Good plan, good plan.

eno's avatar

Well despite your sarcasm, “annoyed” and “bothered” is not defined by you, but how the law of disturbing the peace defines it, so what may bother you might not qualify. The pie incident does. It is loud, excessive shouting.

Hey, works for me. I call all the time and as a result, a lot of people were warned and fined. Know your laws and you won’t have any problems.

Lately, I’ve been calling the cops on pet owners for excessive barking. Works like a charm. They get a warning the first time and then huge fines if the offence is repeated.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@eno You sound like a delight. I sure wish we lived closer together. I can hear your local police officers now, “Another call from @eno? Sorry, I’m on lunch. Send a rookie.”

I’d consider calling the police, waiting for them to get there, and dealing with all the crap that happens once they do a disturbance of the peace in itself. Not turning every little annoying thing that happens into a federal case seems like a much more effective way to go through life, especially if the alternative is calling the cops “all the time.” That’s a tad ridiculous.

eno's avatar

Oh, I am a delight, hence why I don’t tolerate uncultured humans with poor manners. I expect more from a gentrified neighborhood.

They can send whoever they want, as long as they take for it. I just looked up the new fines. Its over $1,000 for a 3rd offense. I don’t think I’ll need to make much more phone calls, although I do live in a wealthy neighborhood so $1000 is not really a hefty fine.

Well, I work from home, so waiting isn’t an issue and a quick phone call is no sweat off my nose. The cops take care of it pretty quick, so it isn’t really a disturbance. They don’t blast the sirens.

I would say the opposite. The more incompetent parents are taught a lesson, the better they and their offspring will behave in the future. That makes my environment better for my kids and me.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@eno I think you need more things to fill out your day.

eno's avatar

I do a little bit of everything while I work. Fluthering is the latest. Good time killer. :)

jca's avatar

I’m going to ask a cop I know what would happen if they were called in a situation like this. I am betting that the whole incident wouldn’t get past the dispatcher but I may be wrong.

“911, what’s your emergency?”

“A child is crying and acting like a brat and it’s disturbing the peace! You better hurry or I will do a citizen’s arrest myself!” (turning to the mom) “Maam, you can’t leave. I am going to do a citizen’s arrest on you right now. You’re under arrest.”

Sure, that will go over well.

eno's avatar

It depends on the state as well. Some states have more relaxed laws. I don’t think it said what state the pie incident happened in.

eno's avatar

For example, long beach laws are different than other areas, law link

hominid's avatar

Is this conversation really shifting to noise laws? I recommend we remember that this took place in a Burger King.

eno's avatar

And what? BK is not subject to any laws? Laws don’t allow private establishments do what they do want. Smoking, for example is not allowed in restaurants (depending what state of course). Labor laws, etc.

hominid's avatar

@eno – Your answer is “yes”? Ok.

JLeslie's avatar

I’m going to comment on calling the police suggested by @eno. It makes no sense to me to call the cops. This isn’t going on for hours. Plus, the fast food place can just ask them to leave if customers are very uncomfortable. You can certainly talk to the manager at the restaurant and they can decide what to do. This isnt like a case of quiet enjoyment at your residence. It also isnt a case of hours and days of loud noise. Plus, it is like spitting in the wind, because one day you are going to disrupt someone’s peace, and hopefully they don’t quickly call the cops on you. We have to allow for people having shitty days and that everyone makes mistakes. Plus, we don’t want a cop addressing something like this, it is a waste of taxpayer money.

Calling the cops won’t teach the woman or child anything, it will just make the headache pie guy look extreme and crazy. He obviously was at his wits end, he basically admits it. LOL.

I find the whole story funny really.

eno's avatar

Well, in the case of the restaurant, it is a last resort. It is only when the owner of the establishment can’t handle the situation is when the cops may be called.

You would have to look up the law of the state on what is considered ‘temporary”, but in this case, you may be right, it might slide, unless the kid sits down to have his meal and continues being a brat, that is more long term.

Too many uncultured people with shity manners in the world. That is the problem. Letting it pass is just avoiding the problem and someone else will end up the victim, but when they’re slapped with $250, $500 and $1000 fine, they will control their behavior.

jca's avatar

Nobody can make a child stop crying, fine or no fine, bottom line. It’s not a matter of the mom controlling her behavior, it’s a matter of wanting to control the crying child’s behavior. If someone knew the answer to that, they’d be a zillionaire from selling billions of parenting books and having a parenting website. Ask any parent how to stop a child from crying. There are ideas and there are things you can try, but there’s no guarantee.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno Do you live in the US?

jca's avatar

BTW @eno, cops don’t just “get fired” over one silly incident. Trust me, they work under a union contract.

jca's avatar

This is what the cop told me:

Well first off if someone called about a disturbance, dispatch would send a car to see whats going on. If the store owner or agent was not asking the woman with the child to leave, I would tell the complainant buy your pies and leave if it bothers you. If the guy is willing to buy all the pies at the location so the kid couldn’t have one, he must be an ass to start with.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@jca ”... they work under a union contract”

Not around here, they don’t.

eno's avatar

Speak for yourself. I raised 6 kids (some much older now) to prove otherwise and it isn’t just me either.

Wanting to control the crying child’s behavior is still a behavioral issue with the mother and wanting means nothing if the mother is too incompetent.

People do have the answers to that and they do write books on it and become very successful. “Tiger Mom”, comes to mind.

A lot of it is common sense though. Aside from genetic predispositions to certain behaviors, a problem child and adult is the result of how they’re raised (what they’re taught and what they’re exposed to). So for example, you can teach your child good manners, but if you expose your child to a bad environment, it may erase all your lessons. This is one of the reasons why I homeschooled my kids. If you expose them to public/private schools, you’re exposing them to possibly nasty behavior of other children and personal propaganda from the teachers, so the peer pressure may erase the lessons you taught your kids and they will come home with that poor behavior. Hence why I think tiger mom writes, sleepovers, camping trips with other kids, etc. is are all forbidden, at least until a child has a solid foundation that can’t be easily broken.

Or the parent is simply incompetent themselves, so the child follows suit. When a child tells his/her mother that he wants some “fing pie”, that tells me everything I need to know about the mother.

jca's avatar

@eno: OK, well I cut directly from the email that the cop sent me about how the police would handle a call, if someone called about a crying child. You read it above.

@livelaughlove21: Cops are public employees. They’re represented by unions and are not all that easy to just fire because someone doesn’t like that the cop is not arresting the mother of a crying child. Read cop’s response above.

longgone's avatar

@eno The “Tiger Mom” treated both her children absolutely horrible, wrote a book oozing with arrogance, and has quite a few people fooled. If she had done to adults what she did to her daughters, she would be called a psychopath. The relationship between her and the kids proves that she does not, in fact, have any answers.

There’s more to childhood than practicing the violin and obeying your parents.

jca's avatar

@eno: Tiger mom or not tiger mom, even she cannot make a child stop crying. She might have techniques, but again, no guarantees.

eno's avatar


Depends on the state (not all are unionized) and unions aren’t above the law. It also depends on the lawyer you have, and even after that one “silly incident” they remain employed, if it happens again, the outcome won’t be nearly as rosy as the first.

What state was that cop in that you spoke to?

Furthermore, going by what a cop says is wrong. You have to go by what the law says, so look up the laws of the state are for disturbing the peace and or ask your lawyer where the law is not written precisely.

jca's avatar

The majority of police around the US are in a PBA (Policemen’s Benevolent Association).

The cop I was quoting is in CT.

I don’t think we know what state the BK incident occurred in.

I am not going to continue this argument because you’re insisting one thing which to me is totally ridiculous. Regardless, like @livelaughlove21 said, it’s unimaginable just calling the police the amount of times you claim to. If you do, with no repercussions, that’s great, but hard to imagine.

Public employees are not easy to fire. Believe me, without telling what I do for a living, I know. Totally nuts to think a mother with a crying baby is going to be arrested or fined and if the cop doesn’t do that, he will be fired.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno I can’t help but think your kids behaved because they were afraid not to.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@jca I know they aren’t easily fired, I’m not disagreeing with that part of your statement, but I’m just saying that they don’t work under union contract in my state. We barely have any unions out here. I don’t know a single person that works under a union contract. Cops here are hired through the city or county they work for, just like any other government employee. I was once gunning for a probation officer job, and they’re technically police officers, so I know for certain there’s no union contract.

jca's avatar

@livelaughlove21: PBA = union.

I don’t believe Probation Officers would be in a PBA.

livelaughlove21's avatar

@jca PBA would stand for…?

I’m telling you. There’s no union contract for cops down here. I just asked a cop friend or mine to be sure, in fact.

I’m sure you’re right about some states, but not this one.

eno's avatar


Thanks for your negative review, but it is a best seller for a reason, and I don’t need to read the book to see the practical result. I see how asians behave and they behave really well.


Also, even if the cop doesn’t get fired, the city has to deal with the law suit (if you have a case) and if the city takes a beating, it will backlash on the cops. Unions are part of the problem that allows corruption to continue, but they’re not above the law. One or 2 more silly incident of mishandling a reported crime and they will most likely demote the cop to a different position rather than a complete layoff.

A mother who can’t control her child is an incompetent mother. There is no sympathy there and she shouldn’t be in the store until the child is controlled. No need to ruin it for the rest of us.

Again, you never go by what a cop says unless he is in control of the scene at that moment but his orders are not always in sync with the law of the state which is why when you want to know the law, you go by what the state law says and use a lawyer for the unclear, vague parts of the law. So what your cop emailed is nothing, he might very well be wrong in how he handles that situation. Just go to youtube and watch the recordings citizens made of cops giving orders against the law of the land. It is much easier to catch cops these days with voice recorders and cameras.

Who says it was a crying baby? The kid had a gameboy that tells me he is 5–7 years old.
They don’t arrest anyone. That is only when the offense is extreme and repeated a lot of times. The first is a warning, then a small fine, then a medium one and then a large one. If the mother keeps at it, then she is too incompetent to have kids and should be arrested.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno I just don’t understand calling in the cops so fast. Why not try to settle the disruption either by talking to the woman or talking to management. What if a neighbor of yours was playing music loud while you were trying to rest, would your first stop be to call the cops, because under the law you have a right to quiet enjoyment? There certainly is a law for that in most states, maybe all of them, but it doesn’t mean the first line of action whould be calling the police.

eno's avatar

Why would I have a repercussion for calling the cops for a crime that is being committed? Not only do they abide, they hand out fines. You’re the only ones who think the cops would be annoyed with me or that I would be in the wrong. I know the law of my area, I pay taxes, I expect good service and the law to be upheld.

I have no problem filing complaints and then sueing if I don’t get my way.

I just remembered a famous example in terms of behavior. Japan Tsunami vs Hurricane Katrina. After the events in Japan there was no looting, citizen were helping each, while in New Orleans, you had mass looting, violence, rape, etc.

eno's avatar


You didn’t read my replies. I said you first ask the mother to control her kid. If that doesn’t work, you ask management. If management can’t help, you call the cops.

I did have my neighbor play loud music, I asked him to stop and he did. However, on the same block, someone else asked his neighbor to lower the music on a party they were having and they refused, so he called the cops. Then they got a warning and lowered it. It doesn’t have to come down to a fine or an arrest the first time. A simple visit from the cops can be a powerful impact.

jca's avatar

@livelaughlove21: I put it in my post a few up – Policemen’s Benevolent Association.

longgone's avatar

Wow. You haven’t even read the book? Try it. It’s dreadful.

“Bestselling” only means it has been bought by a lot of people. It says nothing about a book’s quality, as I’m sure you know.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno I’m glad I was wrong and failed to read your response in full.

It doesn’t change that calling the cops for a screaming child in Burger King sounds like overkill to me.

JLeslie's avatar

I was just thinking about what Jenny McCarthy said on The View a few days ago. She said you never know what is really going when a kid is seemingly misbehaving. One day she was in a store and her son said something along the lines of, “I hate you and…” I don’t remember the rest of the sentence. It doesn’t matter for the story. Someone said to her, “how can you let him speak to you that way?” Her response, “are you kidding me, the doctors said my son might never speak and that was a perfectly formed sentence.” Not that I think this ranting child and his mother actually were smilar to Jenni and her child, because Jenny responded in a reasonable manner to the question, but I thought it was a good story to share regarding never knowing what really is happening.

eno's avatar


You’re correct, but what makes a book a bestseller?

In terms of quality, the reviews are a mixed bag but much more positive than negative.

Regardless, the inability to control your kid is not an excuse to permit disturbance. Funny how when the mother is finally threatened by the store owner to leave or by law enforcement, they quickly find a way to control the noise.

Generally, I like to judge based on results, not intentions. In my personal experience, and from the race statistics that I have seen for various categories, the results are very positive for Asians.

jca's avatar

I see nothing mentioned in the article linked about law enforcement, @eno. (“Funny how when the mother is finally threatened by the store owner to leave or by law enforcement, they quickly find a way to control the noise.”)

eno's avatar

No, I’m talking about human nature. Whenever someone is finally threatened to leave an establishment, or threatened with the law, or threatened financially, they quickly find a way to behave normally, but until then they act tough like the BK mom “don’t tell me what to do”.

It just goes to show you not all humans are inherently decent. and freedom shouldn’t be handed out to everyone with a pulse, rather they should prove themselves worthy of the right to have freedom and that requires high-standards. Otherwise, it is like giving freedom to a lion expecting it to not eat anyone or handing a razor blade to a baby expecting it to not cut itself.

longgone's avatar


“What makes a book a bestseller?”
I repeat…many people buying it. That’s all there is to it. I find it curious that you blindly accept a mass “decision” when it comes to books, while repeatedly stating – in different words – that “humanity” is not to be trusted.

You mention positive reviews. I’d be interested to know what these say. I was amazed at Chuas huge sense of self-importance…but other than that, the book is simply a collection of stories on how to make children miserable. Her daughters’ lives consist of school work and practising instruments, for hours. No play, no friends – ever. Did you do that to your children?

Which results are “positive for Asians”? Are you saying Asians, in general, have good manners? Because that is an invalid point – we were not talking about how effective Amy Chuas methods are. Yes, if you set a two-year-old outside in the freezing cold to teach her a lesson, she will probably be more careful not to contradict you. Withholding food and burning beloved stuffed toys works well, too. Most parents, however, are not willing to sacrifice everything just to make their children obey. Some do actually see their children as people, not “people-to-be”. Luckily. Humans who are not allowed to freely interact socially until they reach adulthood? I shudder to think what that world would be like.

Dutchess_III's avatar

“911, what is your emergency?”
“There’s a kid in the restaurant who won’t stop screaming.”

hominid's avatar

Since this conversation has gone off the rails – from a story of a guy in a fast food joint with a headache to assertions of racism based on assertions of genetic superiority, we might as well discuss how we felt reading that original story.

@eno – How did you feel when you read the original story? Did you feel empathy towards one or more parties involved? Did you experience any anger or frustration? Did you find yourself tensing up and thinking, “Yeah, I have had that happen! If only people would control their kids?!?” Did you relate because you often find yourself in a long line at a fast food place at the end of a really bad day with a headache?

I think I expressed how I felt the other day when I read it. I felt a ton of empathy for the guy. This is how life is. It is frustrating and painful, and people and situations are not cooperative. I’m not special in any way, and nearly everyone I come in contact with likely views me as just an extra that is in the way.

I don’t see the manchild as any different than me. We all have fantasies of “making things right”, because that’s what our minds do. But my frustration or disappointment came at the lack of reflection or analysis that resulted in his telling of the story. And the responses that dominated the reddit thread (as well as here) were dominated by condemnation of the woman, her parenting skills, and that awful kid. I feel sad at this formula. That’s how I feel.

@eno (and others who are determined to make up stories about a woman and kid you don’t know) does it feel to engage in this? Does it make you feel better? Does your anger dissipate? Does it feel like if you just spread it to someone else, you’d feel better?

JLeslie's avatar

@hominid Great idea to go to how it makes us feel. I think that is very telling when we take a moment to think about how we feel and where our emotion is coming from. Why is what is happening triggering us? I don’t know if you wanted all of us to answer or you specifically were asking @eno.

eno's avatar


No, that is not what I’m asking you. I’m asking you why are so many people buying it. I’m implying the quality of the content has a role in it.

In no where in my response did I say I accept the popularity of the book or the negative. I just gave a description for JCA an example of an author who is successful based on her writings about how to properly raise children and be in control. This is an argument for the author, not the reviewers. The question is do you trust the reviewers that it actually works.

Well, as I said before, if I want to know if this is actually true, you examine the result of the people who read the book and applied its principles or simply look at the culture of the Asian people (if they follow suit as tiger mom describes).

Seeing as no one did a study on this yet, the closest thing you can look at are statistical categories comparing ethnic groups in education, innovation, income, employment, crime, poverty, health/life expectancy, environment/housing, etc.. Once you look at that, you’ll see Asians are either on top or bottom (depending on the category) when compared to some of the other races. To be fair, most but not all ethnic groups share their own culture.

I don’t think there is a statistical category for manners between ethnic groups, at least I haven’t see any, but this is where my personal experience comes in (in and outside the office). The experiences were positive.

Have at it positive reviews

My kids were homeschooled up until university. A lot of emphasis was put on education, but they were allowed to play and socialize. However, it was always supervised and selective (meaning I selected who they are allowed to socialize with and where, and what games they were allowed to play and where). Sure enough, my kids socialized among themselves a lot and whoever they socialized outside the house with were also homeschooled kids. After 18, kids are less likely to fall prey to external influence even under peer-pressure. So far so good.

longgone's avatar

Amy Chua had her book heavily pre-advertised – publishing the most drastic stories and, of course, the provocative subtitle (“Why Chinese Mothers are superior”) several days before the book became available. Humans are drawn to drama…for the same reason, tabloids continue to be incredibly popular. Believe me, “quality of content” is not necessary for these to sell, either. Buy the book, trust your own judgement. Positive reviews on really don’t prove anything at all.

Again, we are not talking about whether Asian children are more successful. We never were, and that is a whole different matter. We are discussing to what extent sacrificing a child’s happiness for their “success” is tolerable. Amy Chua admits that (at 15 and 18), she was “unable to control” her daughters (link). She continues to have a very strained relationship with her younger daughter, even though she now stopped forcing her to practice the violin. What happened there? While Louisa (younger daughter) rebels through practically her entire childhood, Sophia suffers silently, gnawing (!) on the piano during practice.

If you’re willing to pay that price for manners, I’m pretty sure we won’t agree on this.

eno's avatar


My answer to your questions starts with the fact that I don’t like brats and in general I don’t like people with poor manners. I also value peace and quiet. Jeez, I sound like Hannibal lecter.

So to answer your question, I feel empathy for the guy and I would feel an equal amount of empathy for the child but only if that child did not behave like a brat. Brats need to be taught how to behave. The mothers response made it clear she needed to be taught a lesson as well. I had no anger, no frustration, no tensing up when reading this. That did happen to me once before and I took care of it but I don’t stand in long lines eating that garbage or anything for that matter since I buy everything online and do my own cooking.

What stories am I making up about the woman and her kid? I’m going by the description of the events that took place. More importantly, her background story is irrelevant since it is not a good enough excuse for her incompetence. The child has an excuse (incompetent mother), but the child and the mother still need to be taught a lesson if the mother is unwilling or incapable.

As for your last batch of questions, engaging this question doesn’t make me feel better or worse. I just chit-chat here to kill some time while I’m working. I like variations, so I do a lot of multitasking. Like I said before, I never had any anger, frustration or tensing at all while reading this or commenting in this question so there is nothing to spread.

hominid's avatar

@eno – How confident are you in your assessment of the woman and child? We know little – if anything – about her and the child except for what was presented by a man with a headache (who was having a bad day) who also knew nothing about this woman and child, right? Are you confident that your storytelling is nonfiction in some way? And if so, why?

Can I propose a story that is just as fictional as your story? This woman in line was talking on the phone with her sister, who has cancer. She lost her job to care for her sister, and is now unable to provide the necessary services to deal with her developmentally-disabled child. She hasn’t slept in days, and she was in line talking to her sister in an attempt to calm her down when her son started doing his thing. While this is all going on, a man in front of her turned around and told her to be quiet and calm her kid down. She told him to mind his own business, but really just felt like strangling him and crying. When she got to the front of the line, she discovered that the man had purchased all of the pies and was eating one slowly in an attempt to prove something.

I repeat, the story above is just as probable as your story about her.

Does this type of storytelling affect you differently? What if you were to avoid storytelling altogether? Is that possible, and how would that affect how you approach people?

eno's avatar


I agree, which is why I prefer my own method of finding the truth and that is to look at the practical end result of the applied principles. So, you’re showing a very small amount of practical evidence (the result of her kids) that it isn’t such a rosy method. You’ll need a huge sample size, though, to make this statistically significant.

Wait, I just skimmed through some of this. She didn’t homeschool her kids which means she exposed her kids to external influence. That is the problem. She only filtered out the influence at home, but not the influence outside of her home. Her kids were craving the outside influence so they saw what was going on at home as torture.

If you, for example, never introduce toys to your kids, they will never crave it, but if you give them a taste, or expose them to those who do have them, then you open up all sorts of desires and struggles.

Also, in contrast, unhappiness can equally arise from unsuccessfulness. Consider that.

longgone's avatar


Did all this not occur to you when you were supporting Chua’s method before?

eno's avatar


My assessment is based on the description given by the guy of the entire event. I am 100% confident in my assessment of this description. I don’t not care whether this story is real or fake. My assessment is accurate.

This is a practically unimportant topic and the only benefit here in exchanging judgements is entertainment value and killing time.

If this was a real story and I was that guy, I would do as I mentioned several times now, ask the mother to quiet her kid, and if that didn’t work, I would ask the manager to quiet her kid, and if that didn’t work, I would call the cops.

hominid's avatar

@eno: “My assessment is based on the description given by the guy of the entire event. I am 100% confident in my assessment of this description. I don’t not care whether this story is real or fake. My assessment is accurate.”

That’s pretty confident. Since I have read the story as well and can cook up 3000 different but equally probably scenarios, why do you feel that your assessment is 100% accurate? And why/how are you able to type “I am 100% confident in my assessment” with confidence and apparent pride? Does seeing what you typed give you pause? Are you concerned at all that you may approach other situations in life like this?

eno's avatar


I can’t say that I support or oppose her method because I practiced a hybrid version of hers where I was always in control of internal and external influence (allowing both) as oppose to her where she mainly controlled internal influence and lacked in authority of external influence (not homeschooling her kids).

I never read the book and whatever I picked up on her method were highlights from a Wall Street Journal article. I skimmed the rest here and there. The only mention of her here was to show her success in selling books on how to raise kids. Whether the principals are actually successful is something that needs to be researched, but from what I know now (that she didn’t homeschool her kids) if that is part of her method, then I don’t think it is a good one at all. This, I believe is why her kids were unhappy.

eno's avatar


You’re conflating the legitimacy of the story with its description. Those are two separate things. I am confident in my assessment of the description of the story because I have evaluated the entire description. I’ve heard the arguments that oppose my thinking and I strongly disagree, hence I’m 100% confident until convinced otherwise.

I always had and continue to have a very good life, so given that experience, I am pretty confident my assessments are accurate. When they’re not, I take my losses and learn from my mistakes.

What reason do I have to always second guess myself when the statistical probability that I am accurate is pretty high? Don’t get me wrong, I do a thorough analysis (when important), but the odds are in my favor – based on logic and experience, at least.

hominid's avatar

@eno – We are clearly talking past each other. We are not talking about the legitimacy of the story. Assuming the story is true, we have a description of an event. That story provides information about the actions of a woman and her child by a man in line at BK. You have stated that you’re 100% confident that if this story is correct, your assessment of the woman and her child is 100% accurate. Since that story is available to both of us, we have the same data to evaluate. There are at least 3000+ equally probable scenarios that I can imagine regarding what is going on here. Yet, you have decided that there is enough data for 1 scenario, and are 100% confident in that.

We all get pretty confident when our brains make up a little story about someone, and we use this as further fuel for our judgment. But upon the slightest introspection, we should be able to see that we have little information and are engaged in fantasy.

I don’t have 100% confidence in anything, never mind confidence that a story I made up about a woman and her child is accurate based on what was described by a man with a headache who is having a bad day and is in line at BK.

Anyway, I don’t think we’re even talking about the same thing at this point.

eno's avatar

Why are you imagining other scenarios when we have a clear description of the scenario that happened? I’m judging it at face value. All you have to do with this given information is place your judgement.

hominid's avatar

@eno: “I’m judging it at face value.”

So am I. I gave you one possible scenario above. That fits with the story’s description. Why do you think this is incorrect?

eno's avatar

I think your description of the scenario has a possibility to be accurate as well, but again, my judgment was based on how the guy described the scenario, not the way you did. Meaning that the kid is fine but is just an immature brat, and the mother is just yapping away with her girlfriend over some nonsense and doesn’t give a damn about her kids behavior because she loves him too much, or finds cursing and disturbing the peace as something acceptable, and she, herself, has a poor attitude “don’t tell me what to do”.

JLeslie's avatar

@hominid I’m pretty confident about that mother also. If her sister had cancer I still hope she would turn to the child and tell him he is bothering other people or tell the man that she is sorry she is having trouble controlling her son, something. Some acknowledgement that she knows it is bad behavior. Even just say, “I’m sorry,” and if the call was horrible I think the pain would be written on her face. I think most people would be able to communicate some sort of empathy for others even if they are in pain themselves, or they would burst into tears being at a breaking point. I think the man would have come to realize it was an emergency call if it was one, because I doubt the woman was talking on the phone at a whisper.

longgone's avatar


So you went from,

“People do have the answers[...] Tiger Mom comes to mind.”


“I don’t think [her method] is a good one at all.”


eno's avatar

It is confusing to you because you’re looking at the statement as an example of methodological success as oppose to reading it in context. In context, it is referring to monetary success of bookselling about raising kids. I told you earlier that I only brought up tiger mom as a specific example for JCA. I agree with JCA that the guarantee of any method is not there despite the successful sale of the book.

longgone's avatar


That’s not true. You brought up Amy Chua as an example of someone with “the answers”. You absolutely did not simply mention her as a successful author. If that were true, you could just as easily have mentioned J. K. Rowling…ridiculous.

eno's avatar

Yes, “with answers”, hence why she wrote the book….

But where in that statement do I write that her answers are proven to work? Exactly, no where. It is something you made up and inserted. You did it because, again, you’re focusing on the methodological success where as my statement is talking about her monetary success of bookselling about raising kids.

You then went on again to pull my second statement out of context. When I said I don’t think her method is a good one at all, it is meant only if her method discourages homeschooling but from what I skimmed through, it was only her personal choice (not part of method she writes in her book). So given that information, her method may or maynot be good. In fact, it is partially good because I obviously used some of it on my kids. Likewise, for the parents in my community, except we all homeschooled our kids. That seems to be why are kids are not emotionally messed up like hers.

You would have an easier time understanding what I write if you actually focus on what I’m telling you, rather on what you think i’m telling you. You take it out of context and then you undermine what I write but adding your own words/thoughts.

longgone's avatar


Do you see why it might be a bad idea to simultaneously talk about two very different topics (parenting vs. successful authors)?

Also: “methodoligical success”? “Undermining” what you’re saying? Clarify, please. Just use simple words. There’s nothing wrong with talking clearly.

jca's avatar

One thing that I have found to be helpful to myself, personally, in life, is the realization that it’s not always my job to “teach people lessons.” Just me, just my personal opinion. Maybe it would have been easier for the guy in the BK scenario to get what he was getting and just get out asap. Maybe life is too short to spend a lot of money on crap he didn’t need or want (23 pies), make faces while eating said pie, call cops and wait for them and have discussion with them (not what happened but was something that was proposed as a possibility).

Maybe in life, we need to stand back and decide how much time and energy we want to invest in something, and maybe “teaching people a lesson” is not our job, not that day, not that lesson. Maybe it’s not my lesson to teach. Maybe there’s more to the story than I could possibly know (does the child have emotional disabilities? is the mom overwhelmed with care of this child and other family members with issues plus financial issues, relationship issues, housing issues, etc.)? Is my life too short to get involved time-wise and energy-wise with “teaching people lessons?” That decision is and can be made on a daily basis, or incident basis.

Maybe, in this situation, assuming the guy was getting food to go, it’s easier to just get the food and go, and be thankful that he is not that mom. Plain and simple possibility. Just my opinion.

eno's avatar


I wasn’t the one who brought it up. I was responding to what was addressed to me.

Methodological success, as in whether her “answers” (her methods) have any real practical success other than selling a book.

Underminding, as in when you take one of my statements out of its context and then add in your own interpretation of it, i.e, when assumed that when I say her “answers” it automatically corresponds with real life practical success, rather than seeing my statement as she has “answers” and she sells them for millions of dollars (monetary success).

If this doesn’t bring clarity then I think it is time we let this go.

longgone's avatar

It was time to let this go about ten posts up. I’m going to take @jca‘s wise comment to heart, I think.

eno's avatar


The guy seemed pretty pleased with himself after the situation was over, so the psychological impact on him was positive. He saw this as helpful for his well being (catharsis). The money was clearly a non-issue.

Why is problems in life an excuse to behave like an asshole to someone else or bring in your trouble (problematic children) to a public gathering knowing he/she may cause disruption?

If I followed your method, the dogs in my neighborhood would still be barking and my neighbor would continue blasting his music.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno It’s a mixed bag I think. His anger level and inability to ignore the situation for the time he is in a fast food line shows me he most likely overall does not handle annoyance in life well and probably it does have some negative impact. Unless this was an isolated incidence, which is definitely possible, just like the possibility this is fairly isolated for the mother and child.

People who have a lot of “shoulds” and expectations about how others should behave tend to be more susceptible to anger issues. This one incident is more extreme and nerve wracking than having an expectation about whether someone should send an invitation in writing or if they wear an innapropriate outfit to a party. People with lots of shoulds have it affecting everything. They get easily offended usually also.

eno's avatar

Right, but if he was angry then by doing what he did, it was cathartic. He relieved his pain and walked of there happy (probably for the rest of the day, maybe even week by clinging on to the outcome of that event).

Yes, people like him like to be in control of their environment and when expectations are not met, they get angry. However, they tend to relieve that anger with such actions as the pie incident. When they cannot, it will boil internally.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno The problem is feeling uncomfortable all the time is a bad state of being, he suffers more than most if that is his personality. That child found it cathartic to rant. The mother found it cathartic to tell the man to basically mind his own business. Don’t you see a pattern there?

eno's avatar

It is only a bad state if he doesn’t release his frustrations. This is also assuming he is constantly annoyed in his life, he might not be or perhaps he does these pie incidents quite often.

Right, but practically, it doesn’t apply. Only one person was wrong in releasing their feelings and that is the mother for not controlling her disruptive kid by telling the guy “dont tell me what to do”

JLeslie's avatar

@eno Wrong. It is bad that he gets so worked up easily, if he actually does get worked up easily. We don’t know for sure if this is an isolated incidient or not. It seems to me you are admitting that you easily are aggravated by people who are misbehaving in your opinion, which happens around all of us with some regularity while in public, so that would mean you are bothered constantly. Wouldn’t it be better to actually not be bothered by it to a point that you need catharsis?

eno's avatar

Which part is wrong?

I’m trying to make the point that in contrast to what JCA said, teaching people a lesson (as the guy did) was cathartic. It is just to point out that there are alternative methods to JCA’s personal approach. Furthermore, at least according to me, ever since I started calling in about disruptions, the neighborhood got much quieter, hence spending a little time taking care of a problem pays off in the short and long run (long term catharsis).

Of course I get aggravated. I’m human. I’m trying to relax and some dog or asshole decides to blast his garbage music so the whole neighborhood could hear it. Why would I tolerate that? Why would I not do anything about it?

It is precisely because I take care of the problem that it only bothers me temporarily. Otherwise, it would bother me indefinitely.

zenvelo's avatar

Speaking of “teaching someone a lesson”, I guess I have learned to be careful about asking questions,

Yet this whole thread has turned into an online verbal representation of the “pie-guy’s” actions, egotist statements on the righteousness of one’s opinions over everyone else’s. Time for me to stop following my own question.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno The incident at hand is a very temporary situation in a fast food line. Even if you do nothing in that situation in less than five minutes the ordeal is over with if the guy was just taking his food to go. Even if he wanted to eat there the kid would have either shut up once he got his pie, the mom might have been planning to take the food to go, it really most likely would be done without the catharsis.

I personally would be very unlikely to get very agitated by that child. Maybe it’s my filter. I hear people have stories of children crying and making noise on planes. I fly all the time and it is extremely rare a baby cries more than 20 minutes on a flight and extremely rare I see children misbehaving on a plane. It is so close to nothing I can’t understand how people say it like it happens way too often.

Look, I said in my first answer I have no problem with that guy buying all the pies, I find the whole thing kind of funny and I don’t give a shit that there are no pies left for other people or that kid. My only point is if someone needs catharsis constantly then I think that is something to address as a problem. I know I have anxiety and anger problems related to dealing with medical doctors. I have worked hard to try to be more objective about my perceptions and reaction to interactions with them. It is very difficult for me, andnI think in some ways it works against me, even though in some ways it is positive too. If I could have the positive without the negative I would be much happier. Other people do it somehow.

eno's avatar

Well, that depends. In his description, he says the line was long and slow.

I agree, though, that if it is a very temporary situation, it might not be worth it to deal with this problem (at least not with the law). But that is still avoiding the problem.

Well, people are different and so their experiences are not the same. From what you in other questions, you don’t have kids. That might have something to do with it, but who knows.

Anger only needs to be addressed when it doesn’t allow a person to function in the real world or it disrupts others, otherwise, there is no reason why anger needs to be addressed. There is nothing abnormal about getting angry/annoyed over a loud disturbance.

Just like your medical experience, your anger didn’t make you dysfunctional and you posed no threat to the doctor, so there is absolutely no reason you need to address your anger. It isn’t a problem. It is a normal response.

JLeslie's avatar

@eno My anger with doctors does affect me. I avoid going to the doctor when I can. I go against doctor’s recommendations, which at times probably is a negative thing, and might wind up be very dangerous for me one day. The stress it creates for me I think shortens my life. When I am worked up it affects my marriage.

You are correct I don’t have kids and you are the first person I have ever heard in my entire life [said with a lot of emphasis] who thinks that makes me more likely to be tolerant and less opinionated about a ranting child. Usually childless people are accused of being less tolerant and less understanding. even I think childless people often are quick to judge and have unrealistic expectations of parenting and of children.

Dutchess_III's avatar

What ever may be made up about the situation, THE most telling thing to me is the kid using the F word without reprisal. Mom, apparently, didn’t even have a knee jerk reaction to it.

jca's avatar

@eno: The difference between someone playing loud music in the neighborhood or a barking dog is that it’s constant. A bratty child in a fast food restaurant is, even if the line is long, not something to be dealt with for probably any more than 10 to 15 minutes, tops. To prolong that by calling cops, dealing with the whole thing, rather than, (as I suggested in my last post) getting the food and walking away and being thankful that I am not that mother, is the part that I find hard to comprehend. If I went my whole day trying to “teach people lessons” and make myself feel better by doing so, way too much time and energy would be spent on something that could be avoided.

Life is too short. As I stated earlier, maybe these are not my lessons to teach. Maybe, if you think about it, (if it really happened the way the internet story says it did), if the guy took the bite of pie and glared at the child in order to get a reaction, the guy puts himself around a 3 year old age level. Kind of like a kid grabbing a toy and saying “Mine!”

I don’t know about you, but unless something is really pressing, I don’t have time to teach people lessons by calling cops, waiting for cops, discussing things with cops, and planning to sue cops if I don’t like their response. Life is wayyyy too short for that crap.

@zenvelo: I thought of you in the middle here. I thought “I wonder what @zenvelo thinks about what happened to this thread!”

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