On the Occasion of Somebody Flipping Off my Daughter

by Janelle Hanchett


So as you know, my daughter Ava recently went to a ten-year-old’s birthday party. They rented a limousine for this birthday party (um, yes they did) and piled eight 4th-grade girls in it to drive around town and go to pizza. Needless to say, they were stoked.

And like any respectable limousine passenger, the girls rolled the windows down and squealed and waved at passers-by (so I’m told, I wasn’t there).

I guess at one point my daughter stuck her head out the window and waved to a woman and man walking on the sidewalk in a town near us, which I won’t mention directly, but I will tell you it starts with a D and ends with an S and has a V in it.

In response to her wave the woman in question flipped her off.


Flipped off a 10-year-old girl.

Flipped off a 10-year-old girl in front of seven other 10-year-old girls.

Flipped her off without a word.

Ava is still talking about it. How she was shocked and shrunk into her seat, humiliated. Understandably, having just been told “fuck you” in response to an act of friendliness.

And by an adult . A grown-up, a member of the group my daughter still trusts, innocently thinking adults are pretty solid and reliable (having never (thank god) learned otherwise).

But she’s starting to see. Because how am I to respond to that? When she told me about it, after the shock wore off, I just looked at her and said “Ava, some people are miserable, horrible creatures. Just mean. There’s no excuse for them. They are just assholes.”

Yes, I used that word. There is no other word that would have worked in that situation.

Now I’m not that sensitive.  (Okay I’m pretty sensitive. But I cover it up well, so I can say I’m not sensitive on my blog.) But really I don’t get worked up about too many things. Some people are frantic about protecting their kids from the reality of life and I am not that way. Shit. We take them to Further shows – there’s a lot of reality there, lemme tell ya.

But this one has got me disturbed.

Because seriously: WHO flips off a little girl? WHO?

What sort of closet was she locked in?

What sort of dog food did her parents feed her instead of breakfast?

How hot is the secretary her boyfriend is boning?

What the hell happened to that chick to turn her into such a hateful ball of rage that she would abuse a kid like that, slash her little heart in random and meaningless violence? Who would somebody return evil for the innocent antics of a small girl?

If I knew who she was I would kick her in the face.

No really, I would.

If I had been there I would have stopped the limo, gotten out, walked over to her and kicked her teeth in. Without a word.

Yeah. I get that hate matching hate doesn’t solve anything. Whatever.

But I’m not Ghandi and I’m not Martin Luther King, Jr. and I’m not Mother Theresa, and so, when some worthless scrap of humanity brutalizes my child I want to render them senseless with my bare fists.


That is all.

Ladies. Get my back. Wouldn’t you destroy this woman if she did that to your kid?

Where my girls at?


  • Shelly

    some people are alive today simply because no one want’s to do jail time!

    • Erin

      This couldn’t be more true. I would probably be doing life without parole if I could do things my way.

    • renegademama

      Haha! totally…

      • Starla

        haha? I read this because I thought the post
        might veer toward original. It was a rant(tho a
        good one lol) and I hope to teach my daughter a better
        example then veiled violence. How about 8 girl
        circle the block only to return with water-balloons? If
        Really Mom’s? Rally for what we don’t know-violence
        is easy.

        • renegademama

          Yes, indeed it was an unoriginal rant. Sometimes, it’s what’s needed. I write plenty of original posts – happy to direct you to them so I may prove my profundity in the face of your critical eye. 🙂

          In other news, though your last sentence is unintelligible, I’m assuming you are admonishing us for not effectively “rallying” for non-violence. Perhaps you will allow me to point out that this was a sarcastic rant on a sarcastic adult blog. You think I told my daughter I would knife this chick? Come ON.

          Would you like a post about my real thoughts? The way I really approach this shit, in my soul? The way I truly direct my daughter? well, maybe I’ll give you one.

          • Starla

            Please…that would be nicer then street mentality with clean english.

          • Starla

            and..I don’t know what you “tell” your daughter
            but if you really felt this irate; do you think
            your example went un-noticed? You seem offeneded
            by “unoriginal” thought losing sight of what
            bothered me. If you think like this so will your children.
            Hello?! Let’s give them better tools to work with!
            maybe? That is my goal…..

            • VaGamma

              Wow Starla. How about you learn proper English and then come back and tell us what you’re trying to say? Or maybe have something like this happen to your ten year old daughter and see if it doesn’t make you as angry as it makes all of us real mothers?

  • Annie

    I’m with you. DESTROY.

    • Bonnie

      I grew up in Vallejo. I’ll cut a bitch.

      • renegademama

        Bonnie, you’re such a badass. I love you.

  • Kristi

    HELL yes! No reason for it!

  • dani

    Cut the bitch.

  • Bliar

    I dunno. There was a time when I would have done the same to a kid in a limo. It ain’t right by any means but in Davis I kinda understand the notion.

    • renegademama

      Really? You would have done that? That surprises me. Because even in the days of my most immature, misguided youth I would have recognized that punishing a CHILD for the family they were born into (or I am ASSUMING they were born into) is ineffective and pretty silly.

      And ironically, that woman flipped off the ONLY POOR KID IN THE FUCKING LIMO.

      So check that out.

      But the sentiment? Yeah. I get it. Bunch of spoiled rich kids in a limo. All kinds of elitism and privilege. Obnoxious. I would have waved then rolled my eyes. Maybe I would have moaned to the dude I was with about how obnoxious Davis is.

      But I wouldn’t have said “fuck you” to an innocent child. I wouldn’t have engaged in a moment of meanness against a kid who IS NOT YET RESPONSIBLE FOR THEIR PLACE IN THE WORLD. I mean what should they do at ten years old? Move out? Say to their parents “you know what. I’m tired of being a part of this American hegemony. I reject my position in the ruling class! I am in 4th grade and I OBJECT! I’m going to live, um, at grandma’s?”

      Really? Flipping off a kid? You would have done that?

      Kudos to you for having the balls to admit that kind of shit on the internet.

      • Bliar

        I would admit all kinds of stuff on the internet. It is the internet after all. But in real life, I probably would be just as upset as you are. And it isn’t ironic, the poor folks always get the misguided brunt of other people’s rage, especially when they think it is directed at rich people. It its just the sort of stuff I expect out of this world. But I also probably would not have let my child ride in a limo, but that is just because I am a young aspiring curmudgeon who does like to crap on people’s good times.

        • renegademama

          Dude. The limo was so excessive it makes me vomit. horrible, horrible shit. maybe I shouldn’t have let her go. I don’t know. it’s the blind leading the blind over here. on the one hand I want to rage against th ee bullshit, on the other hand I realize that what I fight I infuse with power – so maybe it’s better to just let her engage in the bullshit but explain that it’s bullshit, so she develops a self-aware, critical eye? Whatever. I don’t fucking know.

          Thanks for commenting. I appreciate the voice of dissent.

    • Kathleen

      I think maybe what this Bliar person is saying is that maybe they were once that angry at the world, maybe they would have done the same thing? I don’t know. It was probably a college kid that did it. Davis is full of them, and she probably looked adult enough to your daughter that your daughter thought she was grown up. At any rate, it’s still messed up. Definitely a fucked up childhood is to blame for this Davis chick.

  • Jennifer

    Once a guy at a coffee shop was mean to my then 3-year-old. I proceeded to get into his face and tell him exactly what I felt. He was dumbfounded and left. And don’t even get me started on the mom at the park that I made leave. I’m like a mama bear with my kids — so I totally feel you on this.

    However I’m still agape at a limo for 10 year olds. Am I really that out of the loop?

    • renegademama

      Oh hell no you’re not outta the loop. It’s insane. These are some people of serious privilege with whom I totally don’t fit in. At all. Ava used to go to school in this rich town, although we live in the poor town right next door. That’s the connection. They all live in mansions and have twelve nannies and household employees. Whacky.

  • Bonnie

    I gotta tell ya, the chick was probably a gap wearing, starbucks drinking, ipad using, applebees nomming skank. Just a hateful beast. I doubt she was hating on “the man” at that moment. Let little girls be little girls. Who doesn’t like to be silly? Wave at strangers while wearing a bow & a flower in my hair? I wish! I feel so bad for Ava. That is something that my adult brain is having a hard time processing. But you are right. Unfortunately there are some cold, miserable people in the world. Hopefully Ava won’t waste too much energy on that soul-less creature.

  • mamatothree

    Hey, I gotta tell you, a stupid bitch almost ran me and two of my kids down in a parking lot, so I yelled at her to slow down and think about passing her driving test again. At which point she stopped her car and lowered the window to give out. At me – a pedestrian! So I threw her a finger for being such a waste of space. Her response – to berate me for teaching my kids to be rude. Right, you nearly run them over, and that’s fine. But I’m pissed and I’m not teaching them the social graces? Whacky!
    @ Ava – Honey, if I’d seen you, I’d have waved back, and yelled ‘woo-hoo, have fun, girls’, but that’s because I’m a loopy mom and I love waving at people and saying hi. Don’t be down, and don’t worry what your friends think either – could have been one of them trying to be friendly. It wasn’t aimed at you specifically. Just some sad person having a bad day …

  • Ms. G

    I would say someone who is so self righteous and confident in the validity of their reasons for being an asshole that they don’t even stop to look.

    And yes, teeth would be kicked in on my watch too.

  • Kateri Von Steal

    That woman would have gotten the piss kicked out of her.

    Some people.

    Let’s get a sketch artist for your daughter, and let’s go find this evil woman

  • Casey

    One time some elderly woman told me my child needed a good spanking and I told her that she needed a good slapping.
    I do not have the “keep the thoughts inside” gene. lol

  • Kathleen

    Ugh. I hate Davis…..fucking figures. I’m in Sacramento, near the Arden Area. I don’t blame you for still thinking about it. I would be raging for a year about it.

  • Marisa

    Nobody flips off my kid. No. Body. I would tear her a new one, then make her apologize.

  • Michael Ann Riley

    Seriously? I’m embarrassed for my town (but that happens all the time). I agree, it was a probably a college kid but who cares? The person is still an adult and that kind of thing is inexcusable. Horrible. I am so sorry for Ava.

    BTW, Kathleen up there. Not everyone in Davis is like that!

  • mamawolfe

    I agree with MA. I hate it when the real world interrupts my kid’s childhood. Sometimes reality really sucks. But as a teacher, I’m often appalled by what adults do (often unthinkingly) to kids. They are watching us, and we owe it to them to set a good example of being human.

  • Janine Kloss

    Jeese sweetie, I’m so sorry that happened 🙁 I too harbor the initial thought if violence, but am left sad at the fact that it doesn’t matter because it still hurt your baby and for no dang reason… Who effing cares if someone got to ride in a limo… Please tell me why it matters… I am someone who came from nothing and now I make pretty good money and I have to laugh at people who treat me like shit for it. You don’t know peoples past or their present for that matter so striking out without knowledge is completely unreasonable. You’re right, some people are assholes and it’s just too bad she had to get that lesson so young :/

  • 1 Funky Woman

    Seriously who shit in her Trix? Dam there are some awful people in this world! Sorry that happened to your little one!


  • Justin

    I am deeply offended by your statement “Ladies, get my back.”

    I’m no lady and I would have your back 100%. I would have been tempted to hunt the woman down and force her by spear-point to apologize for her rudeness.

  • Paige

    My mom told me recently that my sister was driving (very slowly) in a grocery store parking lot and a man that she didn’t see was about to enter the crosswalk. The guy (in front of his two young daughters) called my 17 year old sister a fucking bitch. My mom almost got out of her (huge ass) truck and beat the guy but my sister came back with “nice language in front of your kids!” hah. My mom was impressed but obviously was outraged that someone would say this to any child let alone hers. I’m right there with in in your violent rant and I hope that Ava always knows she can stand up for herself and that you’ve got her back.

  • mandy

    We were leaving the Chick fi la in the well off neighborhood were we use to live just outside of…on our way to our car a man almost ran my daughter and me, who were holding hands, over. I grabbed her and pushed her to the car the bumper actually touched me i said OMG and the man then proceeded to curse me and my at the time 4 year old daughter out flipping the bird and saying with such n idiot mother she ‘my dd’ deserved to be run over! I asked him to please calm down that i didnt say anything rude to him and if he would stop using such profanity in front of my daughter. He proceeded to grow even more outraged people from yards away at the nearby gas station were yelling at him at this point heading in his direction telling him how inappropriate he was being, he flashed his gun at me at which time i had gotten my daughter in the car but was not in myself i reached to the front and pulled my Glock out while calling the police i informed him of what i was doing my complete confidence in my aim and for him to please set aside his antics move his vehicle so that I may leave. He was an ASS a rolex wearing better then you kinda ass and part of me is sad I didnt get to shoot him.