I played “The children are starving in Africa card” with my daughter Celine. It is something my grandmother used to scream at me when I threw food into the garbage as a child and I promised never to do it as an adult.
But I was really angry when Celine tossed perfectly untouched chicken tenders into the garbage disposal because she was not in the mood for chicken the other evening. I was furious and gave her one of her toughest lectures to date. Her forensics team finished fifth in state competition and I rewarded the family with pizza, chicken tenders, salad and macaroni and cheese from Buddy’s carry out. The food was great. She didn’t even want to try the chicken.
“Are you kidding me,” I screamed. “You just throw food out like it is garbage? That was a very selfish move on your part.”
She began to cry but I was not finished. It came out of nowhere and it was loud and it was with great force.
“Don’t you know children are starving in Africa and you just throw food out like that?”
Yep I said it. I meant it. It was the same go to line my family used on me. However, it really angered me to see that food thrown out. First of all those chicken tenders were great. When my son Little B tried his he closed his eyes and said they were the best tenders he’s ever had. But my little snot daughter tosses them in the garbage.
We try to give our kids prospective. Celine complains that our house is too small. It is 2,750 square feet which does not include the finished basement she uses to build forts and run to when she practices one of her routines for the school concert or play. We take Celine and Little B to the soup kitchen for volunteer work so they can see how some people struggle.
They seem to enjoy it and are proud that they helped people.
Later we talked about the children in Africa and Celine asked why don’t they get a job. I told her it wasn’t as simple as that and now I am gathering videos and literature to show her the horrors of Africa. I think it is time to make a donation in her name.
She needs prospective. Chicken tenders for dinner is not the worst thing in the world.