The Ice-Cream Man Isn't Raising Your Kids, You Are

ice cream truckIt happened to this mom, and it could happen to you. "Sarah" was at the playground with her son. "Along with the first truly beautiful day of the year, my son and I had our first ruined day at the playground."

What could have possibly ruined Sarah and Jr.'s day? THE ICE CREAM MONSTER! Dun dun dunnnnn. "Two different people came into the actual playground with ice cream/Italian ice push cars. I was able to avoid it for a little while but eventually I left with a crying 4-year-old." Say it isn't so -- she had to say NO to her child?!? That such things could happen. I'm shocked, shocked, that a woman was forced to hear her child cry over ice cream. No doubt the first time ever in history. You know what? Ban the ice cream carts!


To be fair, I can relate to how this mother feels. I remember my playground days of yore, hanging out with my little son, enjoying the sunshine and sprinklers. And then you hear it. Like the theme song to Jaws, the ice cream truck jingle brings a sense of doom. Why? Because saying "no" 700 times a day gets exhausting, that's why.

I mean, just for the sake of argument, let's pretend we all agree it's not a good idea to buy your kid a Popsicle/ice cream cone/icy every day. That ice cream truck shows up every afternoon from April through October. And my son asked for a radioactive-blue Sonic-head Popsicle Every. Single. Time. So yeah, I kind of wanted laser-vision so I could make the ice cream truck blow up. Sorry, honey. No Sonic today. The ice cream truck is in flames.

But then one day I had an epiphany: Oh yeah, I'm a PARENT. It's my damn job to say "no" to ice cream every day. And that ice cream truck driver is just an honest guy trying to make a living who does not deserve to be laser-eye blown up.

And THEN I came up with this brilliant solution: Buy an ice cream treat once a week, on Fridays. That way it's not always an arbitrary decision (am I feeling strict, generous, hungry, mean, indulgent?) and my son's world became just a little bit more predictable. Win-win.

See? There's always an alternative to coming across as a total loon in the papers. Your job does not have to be this hard.

Do you think ice cream trucks and carts should be banned from playgrounds?


Image via shastared/Flickr

Read More >