Halloween Really IS Scary!

Kim Kinziehelicopter parenting, humor, the '70sLeave a Comment

I wrote this piece a year ago for Motif Magazine, so the Ebola reference is no longer timely.  Everything else applies though.  Hope it gives you a good laugh… Halloween is the time of year when it’s fun to be scared. On this year’s quest for all things terrifying, I stumbled across The Halloween Safety Guide. I don’t live in a town tormented by Michael Meyers so I never felt that Halloween was so dangerous it needed its own safety guide. Was I missing something? I had to find out. What a scream! The Halloween Safety Guide did not disappoint. There’s more fear mongering here than the news coverage of the Ebola virus.    Here are some of the invaluable tips this site offers to parents of trick-or-treaters: Check for local sex offenders and make sure your kids stay away from their houses.  Technically every home sort of reeks of pedophilia on Halloween – all those grown-ups luring children to their front doors with the promise of candy. The good news: there is no correlation between Halloween and increased incidents of child abduction. Perhaps it’s because kids travel in small packs and often dress as ghouls or adults, making them unappealing prey for your average child molester. Just a guess… Know the route your child will take and make then check in with … Read More

Talking To Our Kids About Diversity

Kim Kinzienon-judgment, the '70s2 Comments

I love the ’70s and would happily return to those carefree days as far as parenting is concerned. There are many things, however, the ’70s didn’t get right, and political correctness is one of them. I will admit that I don’t love having to be PC 24/7.  Does anyone? Comedians sure don’t and, I won’t lie, one of my favorite Seinfeld episodes was ridiculously offensive to Native Americans.   Nonetheless, I’m grateful that my kids will grow up in a world that’s slightly more enlightened. Despite the fact that we live in a town with almost zero diversity, I’m doing my best to teach my kids that we’re all equal – the same, but different.   Judging by their reactions to people who look or live differently from them, I think my techniques are proving to be successful. This is quite a feat for me as a kid of the ‘70s who also grew up in a town with almost zero diversity and watched “All in the Family” on a regular basis. I’m finding that it’s easy with regard to sexuality and religion; it’s slightly more challenging when it comes to race, and extremely difficult when it comes to disabilities.  (I admit these are my shortcomings, and that is something I hope write about someday in more detail.) Does this mean I make … Read More

There’s Nothing Better Than Being a Middle-Aged Woman. So there.

Kim Kinzieaging, older parents, the '70sLeave a Comment

This is the third, and final installment, on my series on aging. About ten years ago, a friend forwarded to me a NY Times article with the subject line: “isn’t this great?” The article talked about the fact that today’s 30 and 40 somethings no longer relegate themselves to being boring suburbanites who get thick in the middle and wear frumpy clothes. These new age middle-agers are hip and cool, and, unlike their 20 something counterparts, have the money to sustain the lifestyle, able to afford those trendy $400 jeans and tickets to the small venue Def Cab for Cutie show.   Coolness lives on, despite ones age. (Looking back, I believe this article was foreshadowing the hipster movement). For my friend who felt that aging and being uncool were synonymous, this article was like a beacon of hope. For me, however, this was my worst nightmare, as my favorite thing about aging is the fact that, each year I care less and less about other’s perceptions of me.   I’m not cool – never have been – and I thought I could finally stop pretending. Damn you New York Times! The pretense began for me at a painfully young age; 1977 to be exact, when everyone in school loved the band “Kiss.” I couldn’t name any song they sang and was … Read More

Eight Years Old and All Washed Up

Kim Kinzieathletics, the '70s18 Comments

My son played baseball for the first time last spring. Given that he was only 7 years old, the atmosphere was low pressure: coach pitch; no strikes; no outs; 3 innings – short and sweet. My son walked away with a new appreciation for this age-old american pastime. Jump ahead 1 year and it’s a whole different ball game. After registering my son for another season of baseball, I learned that, given his age, he’d moved from coach pitch to a more competitive style of baseball. We would therefore need to attend a skills assessment. or, as they were known in my day, the dreaded “try-outs.” So on a chilly Saturday morning last month, I woke both of my sleeping children up from a sound sleep, ran them through the Dunkin’ Donuts drive-thru, and drove to the local high school for 8AM skills assessment. I was relieved to see that the trials were indoors, as it was snowing outside. Once we checked in, my son found some familiar faces and soon got ready to display his skills (or lack thereof). First up: pitching and catching. I can tell you without an ounce of guilt that my son probably has not thrown or caught a baseball since the season ended last June. (I’m not actually convinced he’s ever caught a baseball with his glove, though not for lack of … Read More