So it turns out there are a lot of whiny assholes out there (more than just the ones who comment on my columns even).Paula Papen uploaded a video to YouTube in which she tricks her 8-year-old son Kenyon (look at how long her hair is; she totally gives off the vibe that she’d have an emotionally-overwhelmed child named “Kenyon”) into thinking that he’s just bought a $50 thousand car off of eBay.
Kenyon was searching for a car for him and his father to restore when he accidentally clicked on a Ford Mustang and became convinced that he’d purchased the vehicle. Paula, tired of him bogarting her iPad tablet, activated her smartphone’s video recorder option and then confirmed that he’d indeed bought the car. Hysterical sobbing from Kenyon ensues. Eventually she tells him she’s just kidding and Kenyon laughs at the joke, but apparently many commenters didn’t find it nearly so funny.
“Joking around as a family is one thing, as a family we have always joked around and we love to wind each other up,’’ one commenter wrote. “But what you did to your son was cruel. When he burst into tears, that was the point where you should have put your camera down and let him know that you were joking. Instead of continuing to video him when he was upset so you could upload it to YouTube and humiliate him.” This is the sound a helicopter parent makes when it starts telling people how to raise their kids. That’s why markers come in more colors than black and pencils have erasers, people. There isn’t a “right answer” to this parenting thing (there are wrong answers, but this kid doesn’t seem like he’s going to be a stripper or shoot up a school, so lets all just back off for now), and just because something feels like it works for you, doesn’t make it the new lesson plan.
For her part, Papen handles the response of her suddenly viral video well. “I think I caught more flack for a vertical video than even my parenting, but you kind of just have to let it roll off your back. I think, honestly, teaching your kids to have a sense of humor is pretty important, and teaching them to take a joke is a good deal, too.” Good call, lady. Now if you could just teach your kid to not be such a crybaby we’d be in business.