Parents can be so lame. Hopelessly out of touch. It’s as if they can’t help themselves from embarrassing their children.
And then some parents go our of their way to do it.
It started very simply. Since the school bus would be coming down their street for the first time ever, Rochelle Price suggested that she and her husband Dale go out and wave at her fifteen-year-old son Rain as he went to school. “Maybe we can embarrass him,” she said.
Later that day, Dale overheard his son talking to her, “Mom, don’t let Dad go out there again.”
And the challenge was on.
The next day, Dale came out with a Chargers jersey and helmet.
The day after that, he was Anakin Skywalker.
And every school day since then, Dale Price has been out in costume — a different one every day — waving at his son’s school bus. Every costume has been chronicled on the website www.waveatthebus.blogspot.com
Slowly but surely, Rain warmed up to the spectacle of his father in goofy getups. “The first day of high school I have my dad waving at the bus,” he said. “It was really embarrassing. But the last couple of months it has turned into more entertainment. Everybody else on the bus learned to like it a lot sooner than I did. It wasn’t their dad dressing up like a fool.”
An article from The Daily Herald tells the story, including some self-imposed costume rules — Dale only has about four minutes to dress up in order to keep the costume a secret from Rain — but my favorite quote comes from Dale’s wife:
“Life is hard,” Rochelle said. “It is fun to be able to start it with a laugh every day. That is why I married him. He makes me laugh.”
Life is hard. Parenting, too. But a sense of humor and a small rebellion now and then can help you weather the storms and even create some awesome memories as well. I know, this might seem a little bit more than a “small” rebellion to you. That’s because it’s actually three small rebellions in one:
1) People of all ages love dressing up in costume. On Halloween. But who does it every morning? For no other reason than to have some fun and embarrass their kid?
2) Dale went ridiculously out of his way to embarrass his son. Sure, this is hard for parents NOT to do, but I know few who would go this far and do it so publicly.
3) Finally Dale had the cojones to outwardly share his love for his son. Most guys are too “manly” for that. A simple wave and a daily commitment says more than words ever could.
I hope that I’m able to embarrass my kids this well when they’re teenagers. (I have a feeling I won’t have to try that hard.)
Because when it comes to “embarrassment” on a level like this, outwardly, a teenager is going to make all kinds of noise about how uncool their parent is. But on the inside, they secretly know and appreciate just how lucky they are.
How did your parents go out of their way to embarrass you? If you have kids of your own, how have you managed to embarrass your kids?
Okay, that’s hilarious! No kids of my own, and I’m tempted to try this at work if I didn’t have to worry about getting fired (my company can be pretty conservative). I liked the quote from Rochelle “Life is hard. It is fun to be able to start it with a laugh every day.” I may not be able to dress in costumes every day but I’m going to try and bring that idea into my morning routine. Thanks for sharing!
Love to hear what you come up with, Laura!
(Raspberries to stupid companies who are conservative with the dress code.)
What a great idea! I love it! I haven’t had that much dedication to anything in my life. (How DID he come up with all those costume ideas – I have a hard time on Halloween.) But simply a fabulous way to start the day. And something the family will never forget. Way to go Dale!
I know, right? I can’t believe he didn’t get burned out on coming up with costumes. And I think the article said he only spent like $50 all year. Awesome!
This is in our neck of the woods (next suburb over) and we think it’s a hoot.
I wish he lived in my neighborhood!
As a crazy parent who is constantly embarrassing her sons . . . it can become increasingly more challenging due to the fact that my boys grew up with extreme silliness, which raised that particular bar. Good luck ! Start slow and simple. Then build up to that front yard toilet scene.
Good tip, Lisa. A good challenge to have, methinks. (Don’t you just love the word methinks?)
When my children challenged my ‘authority’, I would double-dog-dare them to do something public and silly, longer than me. Whoever was the boldest got to make the decision. My oldest is 27 this year and recently made a crack about me being old. I slapped him with a tube sock and challenged him to a pushup duel to avenge my honor. It was a tie, but only because we (and his sister) were laughing so hard we couldn’t keep going. LOL!
Rock on Pat. I heartily endorse push-up duels and tube sock slapping!
Personally, I think its pretty disrespectful to the son. I have a great relationship with my four kids and I can guarantee you they would not find this funny or cool. The reputation of your parent being a fool is a hard one for a kid to swallow. Same if they are “drunks” or “druggies”. I work in the school system and trust me … very few kids at that age can handle this sort of thing. Besides, I think its just mean when the son clearly is not wanting this kind of attention. Kids want to fit in – not be pointed out as having a freak for a parent. I’m not saying this guy is a freak, I’m just saying … that’s the way he could well be viewed by anyone watching. I would say this Dad has stepped over the line. I’m sure his son feels the same way. As parents … there’s nothing wrong with a sense of humour but not if its at someone else’s expense (especially their own kid)…I believe they call that “bullying”.