Stephen King and Monet in Space

Yesterday my 15 year old daughter Clara told me about a conversation she had in school with another girl.

Girl: Who is SteFAN King?

Clara: He was an astronaut.

Girl: An astronaut?

Clara: Yes, he was the 5th man to go into space. He also writes horror novels on the side under the name Steven King.

Girl: Who is Moe-Net?

Clara (knowing it was Monet the painter): He works with SteFAN King. He was the 6th man in space.

Girl: OK. Thanks.

 

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman (who is not making this up)

 

Cat on Mars

Cat on Mars

Thoughts on Music, Rock & Roll and Sharing with Your Teens (from the Vampire Mom)

Don’t tell me that you hate your kid’s music. Tell me that you encouraged them to branch out and listen to something new. Tell me that they discovered someone you like too. Tell me that you sang along to a song together. Tell me that you talk about music with your teen.

About Teens and Concerts

I get a lot of traffic on this blog from parents wondering if it is OK to take their kids to a Black Veil Brides concert. Yes, it is. Of course it is LOUD and everyone wears BLACK but the BVB band members give a great show. They also give a safe show. And they have a good message. If your child is under 13 I would not recommend it. Concerts are loud and everyone is packed in. But check out their web site and fan pages  or CLICK here for my article. I’ve taken a lot of teens (mine and friends) to concerts over the years. If you play it safe, check out the band ahead of time, check out the venue, be cool and be safe then it will be fun.

PLEASE DO NOT be an asswipe and drop off your teen young inexperienced teen alone (your under age 17 teen) without a parent or older sibling/friend who can be with them. That is just stupid. Kids get scared and into trouble if you pull shit like that. Remember YOU are the parent (that means you are mature enough to have kids and are responsible for them until they turn 18.)

Go to the concert. Share the music. Have fun even if it kills you. Most smaller venues have places for adults to sit or stand if the kids want to be someplace else. At BIG concerts, like the Fall Out Boy/Panic! at the Disco concert we saw in San Francisco this past fall, you should sit in the stands with your kids (I sat with 8 of them.) It is fun and you can sing along even if you are old.

Black Veil Brides Church of the Wild Ones Tour - Sacramento, CA

Black Veil Brides Church of the Wild Ones Tour – Sacramento, CA

 

 Music Education

There is a lot more to music than what is played on the radio. With YouTube, Pandora and the amazing and old-fashioned but highly successful “Word of Mouth”, kids can learn about thousands of wonderful musicians and musical style options. I am delighted at the variety of music the teens in my life listen to. From Japanese Pop to Alternative Pop Punk to Indie Country to Classical – you’d be surprised what inquisitive teens are listening to and talking about. And yes, we still listen to Weird Al together (the kids and me). Encourage you teens to explore music options.

It is also your job, as an adult, to teach the kids in your life about important music in your life. What did you listen to when you were a teen? What music influences your life? What music made you feel? How did the music of the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s (or whenever) influence social history and the music the kids are thinking about today?

 

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A few more words…

In my household we have a lot of different kinds of music. My brother Andrew is an opera singer. My husband likes heavy metal and classical and punk. My kids like Punk Pop and Alternative. At the skating rink we hear the old fashioned skate music played on an organ. I like it all. OK, I’ll admit that most people think my own taste in music is weird, but it isn’t (but I’ll keep it to myself for now.)

The key, as with everything, is to talk to your kids, share with them and discuss what you’re all listening to. And for YOU the adults – try listening to something new. You might just like it. I know you will.

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Related Links on Teens, Music and maybe even a little bit of Vampire stuff (it is all entertaining and/or informative.)

 

Have fun,

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

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Shut your nasty disgusting dirty little mouth

My daughter wants me to write the vice principal of her high school about sexual harassment at school. It seems as if it is part of the school culture.

To me it seems off that in this day and age, in the United States, in California, that we’d have to deal with this problem.

Then again it seems as if certain parts of society are going backwards with the sexualization of women in music, especially the music so many boys idolize. If you don’t know what I’m talking about look it up or just turn on the radio.

I have no problems with sex or either sex or what people do with those they want to be with. I do have problems when my daughter can’t go to school without hearing a constant barrage of sexual comments and graphic sexual suggestions. It just pisses her off. It pisses me off.

This isn’t something that happens once or twice a week. It is something that happens once or twice or more times an HOUR.

In Spanish class a boy will say “Nice ass.” When he is ignored, he and his friends will start on the “slutty girl” who sits near by until she tells them to fuck off.

Then in English boys talk openly about who they want to “do” and look girls up and down saying “I want a piece of that.” Then one of them calls the teacher a cunt.

By 6th period science my daughter will have at least one guy say “suck my dick” or “send me nude pics and I’ll send you mine.”

Boys who behave nicely are called fags. Yes, being a fag isn’t a bad thing. I wish all boys were “fags.”

Before school starts in August I’ll write that letter. I’ll share it here.

As a parent I’ve held back on a lot of things, especially with high school. I feel like kids should be on their own, take care of their own problems at that age, etc etc etc. However, there comes a time when one does have to speak up, and this is one of those times.

The behavior the boys at our high school display would be illegal in the workplace.

And do these boys have parents? Do they talk to their sons? Not all boys are like this so on a bright note somebody is doing something right. Unfortunately not enough parents are. Or maybe they just don’t give a shit. Either they don’t care about their kids or they see their children as the center of the universe. Polar opposites aren’t really that opposite. It happens.

Yesterday my child told me that some kids want to transfer to another school because of the behavior and sexual harassment problems. Wait… this was supposed to be the GOOD SCHOOL. It was supposed to be the best public high school in the area. WTF?

One of the sad things is that so many girls put up with it. They don’t even know it isn’t normal because their lack of self-worth as a female, plus their lack of life experience.

And you thought Vampires were scary.

 

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Double Standards … and mixed reviews of high school

The transition from a small school to a large high school has had mixed reviews from my daughter.

Last night while on a long walk she unloaded about school. Mainly the kids were stupid. I’ll give you the list.

  • The kids don’t care about their grades.
  • They don’t care about school.
  • All of my teachers but one hate me.
  • There are too many stoners.
  • All the boys think about is sex.
  • The popular girls call me sheltered because I don’t do drugs, smoke or have sex with a bunch of guy. I’m not sheltered. It is my choice not to do those things.

After almost a week off from school it all came pouring out for two hours of hiking in the woods.

I’m glad she talks to me. I think of the kids who don’t talk to their parents. I think it is because their parents don’t encourage it or make it comfortable. One must listen without judgment and without constant suggestions. Just listen.

But we did talk about things.

I believe her teachers DO like her, or at least don’t dislike her. She is quiet in class, asks questions, is involved (if no opinionated) in discussions, and gets really good grades. And she helps other kids when they need it, especially the special needs kids. But she is hard to read for those who don’t know her. She isn’t an open book.

There is a certain cultural group full of tough girls who like to smack girls of other cultural backgrounds. It is a very small group but if you hit other girls people will notice. One of Clara’s friends was hit in PE for no reason other than the color of her ginger hair. The attacker was suspended, but still, it is frustrating. My daughter wonders why these girls – the ones who attack are so stupid and mean and violent.

I asked if any of those girls were in her PE class. She said no, just stoner chicks and they don’t bother anyone.

There are a lot of stoners at school. One of her best friends now hangs out with stoners. He says they are nice to him. She doesn’t know how to handle that. She knows if she hangs out with stoners that everyone will think she is a stoner. That and the fact that she finds stoners disgusting with their lack of ambition and ability to embrace stupidity.

And it always circles around at how sexist the Freshman and Sophomore boys are. They make rude comments, send rude texts and act like jerks if she doesn’t give them attention back. For more on that click here for “Junk Mail.”

There are also the groups of “popular girls” who are beautiful and look Clara up and down when she walks past. The looks are rude and judgmental.

Clara wears great clothes and she is beautiful. She is the California girl with the long blonde hair and I dare say, sultry deeper voice. She is also smart. And she doesn’t take crap. She doesn’t feel the need to follow anyone.

Thank goodness she is making a lot of friends, kids like her who have a high standard for themselves.

Sure she could rip the heads off of the kids who bug her but that isn’t a solution any more than smoking pot to make things feel better. Or worse she could be like the mean girls and making sport of trying to get other girls to feel bad about themselves.

She knows the mean girls and stupid boys will be like the Bruce Springsteen song “Glory Days.” Everything for these kids will be downhill after high school because they never see the big picture or have any idea of what is coming. The big wide world out there doesn’t care who is “popular” or “cool.”

She sees in the older kids (Juniors and Seniors) more mature and smart but that doesn’t make things better. She knows some of the kids will grow up and out of their present immature state but that seems like a long way off.

But it will get better as she makes more friends. Her old friends and new friends more or less all feel the same way she does. They don’t fit into any “group.” They’re just good kids. Not geeks. Not religious. Just good well grounded kids from good well grounded families.

She knows herself and knows she isn’t the one who is weird or off track. She is fine – just surrounded by a sea of stupid.

As for any violence – there are cameras in every classroom so disciplinary action is swift. Unfortunately bad things still happen. Not all the time, but enough to make school suck.

All of these things have never really been a problem before. Everything was always cool or small or less confusing.

As a parent just listen. Let your teen vent. Let them use you as a sounding board. And a hug always helps.

– Juliette aka Vampire Maman

And while you’re online have your teen listen to this. The world is full of jerks but if you’re smart and true you’ll be ok (but the jerks unfortunately are a part of life.)
http://www.npr.org/blogs/krulwich/2013/11/30/247842138/science-reporter-emily-graslie-reads-her-mail-and-it-s-not-so-nice

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Things I heard …

Things I heard this weekend from teens:

“If I had to wear a school uniform I’d crap a brick and throw it at someone.”

“He thinks he is a big stud but he’s just a cold turd.”

“Some guy is going to beg you to send him nude photos. So you send him a photo. He sends it to a friend. It goes all over the Internet. Then six months later you get a photo texted to you and say “Hey, those are my tits.”

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I can’t make this stuff up. Yes, some will say I’m not taking the tasteful or moral high road here, but I’m too busy laughing.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

Back to School – Tips for the First Week

TeensSchool will start in a few weeks. That is a good thing for teenage girls who always look forward to seeing how the boys have grown over the summer. Skinny kids suddenly, over a few short months, grow tall and muscular. Awkward adolescent faces become angled and handsome. Shoulders grow broad and voices deepen. This includes my 17-year-old son Garrett and his friends – who of course, being Vampires, are exceptionally handsome and strong. It is a wonder to behold – especially for the girls.

And speaking of girls, especially one who doesn’t care what Garrett or his dorky friends look like is his 14-year-old sister Clara who starts high school in two weeks.

Clara and Garrett’s Tips for the First Week of High School

  • Don’t wear all black, head-to-toe flowers, a pink tutu, rabbit costumes or anything else extreme or too weird. First Impressions are EVERYTHING. OK don’t go off on your “self expression” rant. I don’t want to hear it. We’re talking practical truths here. The first day of school is like a job interview for both fellow students and teachers. Clara knows she can’t wear her band shirts with the red and black Zombie blood on them, black jeans and black combat boots (or I won’t let her out of the house). She’ll opt for the black pants and boots with a fashionable flowered tee. Or she’ll wear her denim shorts and black shirt and combat boots or flats. The Zombie shirts and Band shirts will come later. The all black and way too much black eyeliner can be worn later but not the first week. This is real world stuff. Making a good impression on the teachers and everybody else is so important. It isn’t shallow – it is reality (think job interview). By the third week of school go ahead and let your freak flag fly high with pride. By then everybody will love you anyway (for exactly who you are).
  • Freshmen girls – don’t get involved with Junior and Senior boys. Clara (age 14) says first of all they just want to take advantage of you. Garrett (17 and will be a senior) says it makes you look stupid if you’re a senior boy and go after Freshmen girls. End of story. Don’t be stupid. Stay with kids your own age. If I have to explain this one then you ought to consider home schooling or a single sex school.
  • Boys – don’t skip. Just walk.
  • Girls – don’t show off in high heels. Your feet will thank you for wearing your Vans or flats.
  • All kids – the first week of school in a large high school can be tough. Clara is coming from a Middle School with only 33 graduating 8th graders and entering a school with almost 2,500 students. She knows about a dozen of them. So anyway IT IS OK TO ASK FOR HELP. If you can’t find your classroom – ask for help. If you’re lost, confused, frightened, baffled, or totally overwhelmed – ask for help. If you can’t find an answer go to the nearest teacher or to the front office. They can help – and they’ll be glad to help. It is their job. You’d be surprised how many kids feel the same way.
  • Smile (but for Vampire kids make sure not to show your fangs). Smile. Smile. Smile. Everybody likes a smile.
  • Wear sunscreen. Always.
  • Make sure you always have a pen, pencil and pencil sharpener and erasers in your backpack.
  • Don’t let anyone bully you. And don’t bully (or everyone will think you’re an asshole and you don’t want that.)
  • Listen to the teachers.
  • Don’t worry about looking cool. If you worry too much about being cool you’ll look like a dork (to the point where even the dorks think you look stupid).
  • Have fun.
  • Be open to making new friends.
  • Keep an open mind.
  • Brush your teeth and use good personal hygiene (nobody likes to sit next to a stinker)
  • Join clubs. It will be fun and you’ll meet friends. Plus it will keep you connected and look great on a college application.
  • Try to learn something.

Special tips for Vampire Teens:

  • Don’t lunch on your friends – lunch with them.
  • Don’t ever show your fangs.
  • Watch for the Werewolf kids. That means protecting them from any harm. You don’t have to be friends with them but you need to help them out. They can feel isolated and shunned – so just help them out when needed.
  • Don’t fall asleep in class (I guess that goes for all kids, no matter what kind of kid they are).
  • Don’t read your teacher’s minds or do any other paranormal behavior in class. Please, know that your parents are right on this issue.

So have fun. And check out Target for cute binders. We found some great ones yesterday.

And DON'T be like THIS GIRL. Your reputation is everything ladies!

And DON’T be like THIS GIRL. Your reputation is everything ladies!

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

My mom blogs about vampires

My mom blogs about vampires