This morning I received a great e-mail from alert reader Ken in Paris. (In his honor I won’t make any jokes about French Generals surrendering to my daughter’s preschool class on the battlefield) He sent me a link to an article that really hit home. And if you’ve ever taken a long drive (meaning anything over 3.5 minutes) with children, you’ll love this piece as well. Seriously, go read it. It’s about what items are banned in the author’s (a father of multiple children named Brad Moon) truck. One my favorite sections said:
“Generally speaking, I agree with the TSA when it comes to sharp objects such as meat cleavers, ice picks and scissors, and I’ll also stick with their decision to ban firearms, cattle prods, drills, blasting caps, hand grenades, plastic explosives, pepper spray and tear gas. My kids don’t have access to most of those items, but it works for me as a common-sense baseline. The last thing I need 10hours into a 12-hour drive is an accidental blast of pepper spray to the face or a cattle prod duel breaking out between the occupants of rows two and three.”
So I have a few items to add to Brad’s list of things the little people shouldn’t be allowed to have in the car:
1. Granola Bars of any kind – these are guaranteed to instantly transform from potential healthy food into crumbly mess that will meld molecularly to the seats and floor mats.
2. Ice Cream – Just a couple years into parenthood my wife gave our little man ice cream while in the car. I was stunned – she had to be joking, right? She wasn’t. Predictably every part of the car within throwing distance of our happy eater was quite sticky by the time we got home. I pretty much had to power wash the inside of the car.
3. Balloons – Oh they seem innocent enough. That is until one gets pushed right in front of your face while you’re trying to carefully change lanes on the interstate. They will also explode loudly at random times, creating a unnecessary distraction and ensuring that one or more of the handlers in the back seat will certainly be crying for the next several days. One other thing – that noise they make when kid’s hands touch ‘em kinda grates on the nerves.
4. Light Sabers (either real or otherwise) – Pretty sure you don’t need a paragraph of explanation on this one, but it is a problem with my miniature Jedi Knights who are trying to complete their training while harnessed to their booster seats.
5. Cheese Sticks (aka String Cheese - The Natural Food) – We may be unique here, but these handy snacks are almost never eaten in their entirety and it would be WAY too hard for the kids to get the leftovers into a trashcan. Instead they are simply dropped, but more often they are “stored” somewhere “for later.” We often find moldy remnants stuffed in dark mini-van crevasses.
Those are just a few of the items that I’d like to ban. What would you prohibit?