Friday, April 11, 2014

A to Z: Jelly Bones

Jelly is a slippery substance.  It looks solid enough in the jar, but when it spills and you try to put your hands on it, jelly just oozes through your fingers, only now it's sort of spread out in a bigger mess than it was.  No matter how hard a person tries to contain jelly, it ain't happening.  After awhile, it becomes almost worth it just to leave the jelly where it falls and hope the dog prefers strawberry.

Kids can be that way, too.

Kids have tantrums, and most parents can deal with that, even when they happen in a public place.  Most parents can ignore the screaming, the crying, and the yelling.  Many can even ignore the kicking, the flailing, and the hitting.  I often see parents dragging their screaming children down the aisles of Walmart, going about their business, as if they were not holding hands with the Tasmanian Devil.  It's logical--ignore the bad behavior, and kids lose interest in that drama.

But nobody can ignore the Jelly Bones. 

We've all seen it happen.  A tantrumming child suddenly goes limp, his extra calcium-enriched skeleton turning to jelly.   Little Susie has suddenly become a puddle of skin on the floor, all of her muscles unable to support her.  Instead of a loud screaming fit, there is silence, and extreme passivity.

At first the situation is scary.  Did they faint? A seizure?  Did my child randomly grab something off the shelf in the Lawn and Garden section?  WTF?  Calm down. It's a case of the Jelly Bones, right in the middle of the Dairy aisle.

Your child has switched tactics on you! This is passive noncompliance at its finest. Since imitating a volcano hasn't worked as a means of world domination, your child will now attempt...The Mountain. A mountain does not move or respond to rewards/bribes/threats, and short of explosives, nothing can make that mountain put back that package of Oreos.

What do we do?  A Taser would likely work, but Child Protective Services frowns upon that sort of thing.  Rolling the cart over them is just right out; those tire marks never come out.  Leaving them on the floor is a viable option, but when you try to "lose" your kids, Walmart will find you.  Not that I would know anything about that. *cough* (It was only once, and only because I knew he'd be off the floor the second I turned the corner)

Some moms haul their recalcitrant child right out of the store and home for some quality time out sessions, but other mothers have become immune to the Jelly Bones drama, place their child into the cart, and go on about their business. Moms have stuff to do, which means less time for kids to engage in those fun and dramatic behaviors that they used to.  Occasionally, I will see a child with Jelly Bones flopped in a cart, covered in groceries. 

I always give that mom a high five.


  1. Ha! I realize many parents hate dispensing discipline in public, but it doesn't bother me one bit. I like to know I'm not alone. But my darlings usually reserve their shenanigans for home where it's much harder for me to keep my cool.

  2. I've actually just walked over them and continued on. At some point they'll come find me. I quit being embarrassed. Still get the looks. I've also been known to spank in the store. I make sure to look at the cameras so that they can get a good pic of my face before beating the butt. If the police want to get involved...oh well...

  3. Ahhh! The Jelly Bones are terrible! Mine are just a little too young to walk away from yet--they add in screechy cries to the Jelly Bones if I get more than a foot or two away--so I usually resort to tossing them in the cart and moving on.

  4. Oh! They are so hard to pick up and move along when they go limp with the jellies!


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