Monday, August 6, 2007

Alpha Dog

I watched the movie Alpha Dog yesterday. The story is based on what some stupid spoiled teenagers did in the late 90’s. It wasn’t a BAD movie. I just found some of the content a little disturbing.

I just don’t understand why kids get in to the kind of trouble that they get into these days. My parents neglected me just as much as any other kid and I didn’t feel the need to deal drugs or shoot anybody.

The kind of trouble I got into was harmless.

1. Once my friends and I got busted for trespassing at the local rock quarry. We were climbing the giant sand piles and diving off the top. The cops were cool; they just took us home and laughed with our parents about it.

2. We did a lot of T.P.ing. Never less than a 12 pack of TP. It was an honor to have your house T.P.ed by my gang of troublemakers.

3. Probably the nastiest thing my friends and I did was cover my buddies piece of shit Pinto with tampons dipped in ketchup.

Nobody got hurt, nothing got broken.

I was a teenager in the late 70’s and early 80’s in the very same area this movie takes place. I was born in Pomona, CA. My dad was a policeman in Pomona. I played high school soccer and tennis against Claremont High. I delivered pizzas to the Claremont Colleges. I now live in the Palm Springs area. All three of these places are featured in this movie. It was weird to see these places that I look at fondly represented in this type of a movie, a movie that is all about drug dealers, potheads, tweekers, racists, kidnapping and murder.

Probably more disturbing than the kids in this film were the parents. Every parent in this movie played a key role in how his or her kids ended up. I always have to remind myself that it is my job to pay attention to my kids and do my best to make sure they stay out of harms way. That means I can’t always be my kid’s friend.

4 comments:

Queen of Dysfunction said...

You know, you are spot on. You're not your kid's friend. You are their parent. I often have to remind my own kids of that when they tell me how un-fun I am.

ventl8r said...

Everyone is so quick to blame the kids, but they learn it from somewhere. Usually it stems from when the parents were kids and had rules and responsibilities and swore that live was so unfair that they would never do that to their own kids. Now you have kids that get coddled in school when 20 years ago they would have failed and had to have repeated a year.

THe fear of lawsuits because a parents' "star" athelete just wasn't good enough for Varsity and had to settle with JV.

Responsibility and accountability. It's easier to give in to your kids than to stand up to them.

Yes, you are a parent first, friend after.

Guinevere said...

Great post today, Tom! I agree with everyone else, you are spot on, baby!

I have fun with my kids and we can hang out together, but when it comes down to brass tax, I'm the mom. Period. Too bad alot of other parents don't realize that's where they went wrong...

:o(

Tammie Jean said...

Okay, first of all, LMAO at #3!

I don't think you can really compare teenage life now to when we were growing up. It's just not the same. Everything starts younger.

When my daughter started at a new junior high (a huge school!) in 7th grade, she said most of the kids already smoked cigarettes and pot, most of the girls were no longer "innocent", and she knew of several kids who were dealing.

She also told me about kids who smoke pot with their parents, kids that are physically and mentally abused, and kids who were kicked out of their homes by their parents.

It's scary out there...