Some People Say Video Games Are Unhealthy, But…

, , , , , | Related | June 11, 2021

I’m playing video games when my mom asks me to do something.

Me: “Yeah, just let me die a second.”

There’s a long pause.

Mom: “I know what you mean, but please never say that again.”

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Having Trouble Processing This Relationship

, , , , , | Related | CREDIT: LimeSucker | June 6, 2021

After I graduated high school, I decided to go to study in another city, so I had to rent an apartment. My parents — especially my step-mother — refused to pay for my apartment, even though they were wealthy enough to do so. I had no money whatsoever, so my grandparents intervened and decided to pay for the rent each month. The only money I was getting from my parents was my mother’s alimony paid to my dad because I was still a student

I’m a gamer and a nerd, and I played “World of Warcraft,” but I was playing with a crappy laptop that was getting slower and slower. An in-game friend in my guild bought me a computer and surprised me with it when I invited him for a LAN with other friends from the same guild. I was ecstatic and so grateful!

Two years passed, and I graduated with a two-year diploma. I decided to go to engineering school, and the one I got into was in another city so I had to move out. As I had two months before starting school again, I moved all my belonging into my parents’ garage, included said computer. The next day, I went to have some holiday weeks at my grandparents’ holiday house.

While on the train, I received a message from both my dad and my step-mother.

Dad & Step-Mother: “What the h*** is that computer in the garage?”

Me: “It’s my computer?”

Dad & Step-Mother: “How did you get it? With what money?”

Me: “A friend gifted it to me. I already told you about it, Dad.”

Dad & Step-Mother: “That’s a bulls*** story!”

Me: *Frustrated* “You can call me when I get home.”

A few hours after, I’m at my grandparents’ and they call me. The exact same conversation ensues, and they do not believe how I got that computer, so my dad has the bright idea to ask that friend to give me the invoice for the computer — it was a prebuilt tower — so he could trust me.

I contacted my friend to ask if it was possible to have the invoice, and I was so embarrassed to ask him because I told him the exact reason I needed it. He said it was no problem and sent it to me, and I sent it to my dad.

I thought they were convinced, but they still kept scolding me for having that computer.

Fast forward a few weeks. I’m back at my parents’ house because I need to move for engineering school. I try to pack my things, but they refuse to let me have my computer.

Me: “You can’t possibly tell me to leave it here; you didn’t even pay for it.”

Dad & Step-Mother: “We don’t care; you’re not taking your gaming computer for school.”

There was no point in arguing, so I left without it. Unfortunately for them, I try hard to get the things I want. I knew they were going away for vacation in December, so before they left, I ordered a new computer case and asked a friend of mine if she could send me her old spare parts.

While my parents were away, I went to their house, brought the new case and the old parts, installed the old parts in the old case, and transferred my computer parts into the new case. I left the old case in the garage and took my computer back to my place.

It has been a few years now and I have been authorized to have my “computer” back. They still don’t know.

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Horsing Around And Being A Horse’s A**

, , , , , , , | Friendly | CREDIT: Shifting-Parallax | June 4, 2021

I live in a rural neighborhood on five acres and my nearest neighbors are a sweet elderly couple about one acre from me. They’re perfect and we get along very well. I own my own home and have two horses and a cat, and recently, my mom has also moved in.

Here’s where things go south. My neighbors’ son and his wife and two girls — four and seven — live in the nearest city and don’t feel safe during the health crisis. I don’t blame them, and because my neighbors are saints, they open their home and the brood moves right in.

One morning, I’m letting my horses — a Clydesdale and a Welsh Pony — out into the front pasture, and I hear the most high-pitched squealing from next door. I pop my head out and the two girls are losing their minds. And I get it — little white pony and the horse from “Brave” — but still, they’re large animals they don’t know, so they should have the sense not to approach, right?

Pfft. Not a snowball’s chance in Hell. These kids sprint to the fence shrieking. The pony runs around in panic and the Clydesdale stands there with the same “WTF?” look I’ve got on my face. Then, the four-year-old starts to go under the fence.

H***. No.

Me: *Firmly* “Don’t you dare climb under that fence!”

I admit I’m kind of harsh, but I’ll be d***ed if I’m going to have my horses mow over a kid. I walk over to them and they look like they’re about to cry.

Me: “These horses are big animals and could easily hurt you. You must never climb under or over the fence.”

They go home and I clean stalls. An hour in, I hear someone banging on my home’s door, and I can see through my barn’s hatch door that my mom and the kids’ mom are having a conversation. The kids’ mom then storms down to the barn. I’ve never met this lady, but I know an entitled parent when I see one. Joy of joys. She starts going off on me.

Kids’ Mother: “How dare you make my kids cry?! They just wanted to see the ponies!”

She goes on and on, but when she takes a breath, I get my point across.

Me: “Ma’am, your youngest was crawling under the fence toward two large animals none of you know. That Clydesdale is a 2000-pound draft horse; he can literally crush you, not feel it, and do permanent damage. The pony looks cute but needs an experienced hand as he is very untrustworthy, flighty, and tends to bite. Your children are not allowed near them without my consent and heavy supervision, and they’re never allowed in the pasture with them. Do you understand?”

Kids’ Mother: “Well, if they’re so dangerous, why do you have them? Are you even allowed to have them? I should call animal control!”

And on she goes again, until I find a space to interject.

Me: “One, they’re my personal horses; yes, I’m allowed to have them. Two, your kids trespassed on my property; I’m trying to keep them safe. Three, this is not a petting zoo.”

She huffs off and I continue work. Later that evening when the kids’ father gets home, I explain what happened. He’s understandably alarmed. I explain how dangerous that situation is and he agrees. I’m optimistic about his reaction, but I know he’s often not home so I stay cautious.

Later in the next week, I’m working from home and I suddenly hear screaming — not excited screaming but scared little kid screaming. I rush outside and the four-year-old is bawling in the middle of the pasture. The pony is doing laps around the perimeter of the fence as my Clydesdale slowly approaches the little girl. The seven-year-old is crying outside the fence and calling for her mom, but clearly, their mom is not watching them. My initial terror recedes a bit because my Clydesdale is essentially a golden retriever in a horse’s body — the sweetest pushover in the world. He’s gingerly approaching her in a slow, friendly, way and being as non-threatening as he can. And with him so close, the pony won’t rush them. He’s probably about three steps from her, but I yell for him to halt, and like a good boy, he does. I make my way in with them.

Me: *To the four-year-old* “Are you hurt?”

She’s not, but she’s clearly scared, so I pick her up and walk out, making my Clydesdale heel to me just in case the pony gets a dumb idea.

The mom is STILL nowhere in sight, so I take them to my neighbors’ house. What proceeds is about thirty minutes of screaming and crying. The girls’ mother is the one to open the door, she starts screaming at me and firing off questions before my neighbors intervene. I tell everyone exactly what happened and my elderly neighbors BLOW UP — at her, not me.

Neighbors: “How could you be so irresponsible and negligent?! Your daughters could have been hurt!”

Kids’ Mother: “Well, if your neighbor didn’t have those horses in the first place—”

The mom keeps trying to throw the blame on me, but they aren’t having it. My neighbors apologize profusely and I go about my day until the father gets home. He comes by my place.

Kids’ Father: “I want to apologize for my family’s behavior and especially for my wife’s behavior.”

Me: “Thank you. I understand; they’re little girls, and I, too, know the allure of magnificent, fluffy horses! Their mom is at fault for not watching them. I’m just glad everyone is okay.”

The girls were still really shaken up, so I extended an olive branch. I was an overexcited kid who liked horses once, too, and I didn’t want this to completely traumatize them from being around horses.

So, the next day, I properly introduced them to my Clydesdale, with him in his stall with the inside hatch open and the girls being supervised by their father and me. They loved it and the Clydesdale loved the attention. Everyone’s happy, right? Well, except the mom, who took my olive branch as an offer to teach them horseback riding, give free lessons, and other crap, but her husband shot it down hard, and presumably so did my neighbors.

Since then, it’s been quiet. I did install a second electrical wire on the bottom of the pasture fence — not just on the top — just in case. And yes, they did test it. The seven-year-old got zapped pretty good and got in trouble with her dad. Aside from that, there have been no incidents other than them wanting to pet the horses when I drop evening feed once in a while. Here’s hoping it stays peaceful.

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The Worst Kind Of Wake-Up Call

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: realtomgl | June 2, 2021

I work in a hotel. One day, I help a coworker out by agreeing to work a morning shift. That should be easy.

Eight am rolls around and I get a noise complaint. Wonderful. I look up the room and it is a mom with a bunch of kids. Even more wonderful. I don’t want to deal with this or yell at a mom at eight in the morning.

Then, I check the profile closer. They were put in a handicap room since it was bigger. I go upstairs and knock on the door. Mom answers.

Me: *In a very concerned voice* “Is everyone okay in there?”

Mom: *Confused* “Everyone is fine.”

Me: “I’m relieved to hear that! The front desk got noise complaints about the room, but since it is a handicap room, I thought the thudding noises described meant that someone had fallen over. Thank you for clearing things up!”

I turned away, knowing that Mom immediately got what was up, and after she closed the door, I heard her say, “You kids have to be quiet!”

There were no more complaints about that room.

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Check Out This Sweet Parenting!

, , , , , , , | Related | June 1, 2021

My mum was a firm believer in treats, but only in the right places; she didn’t want me to associate treats like sweets or chocolates with the wrong places, in case I started demanding them.

When I was two, my aunt and my cousin visited us from Australia for a couple of weeks. While they were staying, my aunt would do the shopping to give Mum a rest, and she would take my cousin and me with her.

My cousin is about five years older than me and apparently quite demanding. He would demand a chocolate bar from the display at the till, and if he didn’t get one, he would throw a tantrum. My aunt would give in and get him one, and so I wasn’t left out, I got one as well.

This was the first shopping trip Mum and I went on after our family returned to Australia. All was fine until we got to the checkout and I saw the display of chocolate bars. I pointed at them and asked for one.

Mum: “Not now. You can have one later after tea.”

I threw a tantrum. It involved me screaming, sobbing, and generally being a very annoying and very loud little snot. The queue was quite long, and it took a while for us to get served. In all that time, there was no let-up in screaming.

Mum felt like giving in. Even with the ear-splitting shrieks I was emitting, she could still hear a lot of tuts and “what a bad mother” comments from other shoppers to each other in the queue. She did come close to it, thinking it would be so easy to do so, but she told herself that if she gave in now, it would be harder next time.

In the end, she had to drag me kicking and screaming out the door. That wasn’t a turn of phrase, as by that time I had thrown myself onto the ground, having apparently decided to move onto the next level of toddler tantrum.

I don’t know how she managed it, but Mum did manage to get me to stop without giving in. I’m guessing I just screamed myself to exhaustion and gave up.

One week later, we were back in the shop at the checkout. I pointed to the chocolate bars and asked. Mum said, “No,” and just as my lips started to quiver and it looked like I was about to have another temper tantrum:

Mum: *Sternly* “Don’t even think about it.” 

It worked, as I didn’t have that chocolate bar tantrum. Not then, not ever. 

A year or so later, we were at the checkout. My new little sister was in her buggy, Mum was packing the bags, and I was looking at the chocolate bars. I’d started to recognise words, so I was telling Mum what all the various chocolate bars are. The customer behind us spoke up.

Customer: “You’re going to have trouble getting him away from them.”

Mum: “We’ll see.” *Finishing up and turning to me* “Come on, time to go”

I left the chocolates and walked out the shop with Mum and Sis, leaving a very surprised customer behind. 

Fast forward about eighteen or so years. I’m visiting my parents during one of my university holidays. Mum has just finished telling me about all of the above, as I was too little at the time to remember it. 

Me: “So that’s why!” 

Mum: “What do you mean?” 

Me: “All these years, I’ve always felt deep down that it was wrong to buy chocolate bars from the checkout display. I never knew why; I just felt it was wrong. Even when I was working at a supermarket, it just seemed wrong. Now I know why; it’s because of that tantrum!” 

Mum: “Well, the lesson certainly stuck!”

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