Lucky Mom

Aug. 6, 2006

Book Review: "I Hate Other People’s Kids": Cute title, not so good read.

I recently did a Lucky Mom book review on "Sippy Cups Are Not For Chardonnay" which I really enjoyed. (Yes, since being pregnant, I read a lot since some of my other enjoyments are not considered very pregnancy P.C.)

Now, I have no credentials to critique anything published but I have to tell you I was not impressed with “I Hate Other People’s Kids”... Admittedly, I thought the author was a parent writing about the annoyances of others’ kids, hence the title. Apparently, the author meant ‘people’s kids’ as she does not have children.

Either way, I thought I’d get a kick out of this book as it hasn’t been that long since I wasn’t a parent. In fact, being an ‘older’ mom, I’ve been on the ‘other side’ much longer than ‘this side’.

Basically, the author, Adrianne Frost who lives in NYC, is a bit annoyed with the baby-focused culture we live in. I admit that lately it seems that all the big stories in Hollywood (with the exception of Mel’s current Faux Pas) center around the ‘baby watch/bump’ of celebrities.

But, Frost’s book, though it does have some pretty funny sections, mainly tries to make some old-school humor with boring and tired incidents.

I mean, she yaks about how annoying Screech, Tabitha from Bewitched, Jodie Foster as a kid and DJ from Rosanne are. And, Punky Brewster (who? O.k. I know who but wasn’t that like about 20 years ago?) These people have their own kids for crying out loud. How about some of today’s annoying kids?

Other ‘funny’ kid annoyances she tiredly references include, how kids make noise on airplanes (uh….never heard of that before – sigh).

For some reason she has a ½ page chart of 12 noises she has actually heard kids make. E.g. Dooooot, Nufffff! Djiiit! Oh, and the really funny, Chumb!

Oh, now THAT IS hysterical. Snore.

My favorite boring annoyance of hers is that when she goes to Denny’s which she references a ‘civilized eatery’ and other kid-friendly restaurants, there are kids there! NO WAY! Kids at a kid-friendly eatery? The gall of the breeding!

She cries that kids are in amusement parks, zoos and parks! How rude!

The joke is on her on page 102. She discusses how when throwing a fabulous party, those who bring their kids have to leave early because the damn kids get tired. She wasn’t ready to have these people leave but because of the tired brats, her party is over. Apparently she hasn’t realized that kids can be a parent’s perfect weapon to LEAVE a boring party!

You always blame the kids; it’s the ultimate excuse to get out the door. Hello?

I just didn’t think she was very funny. I mean, if you want to rip on people and their kid obsessions, there are much more funny things to laugh at. Like today’s parents competitive baby buying. E.g. Bugaboo strollers ($900), the overabundance of minivans, the pricey duds on our tots, the ridiculous ‘playground wars’ etc.

So, if you’ve heard of this book and are interested in reading it, save the $$ and get it free at the library. Then, read the 138 pages in about 1 hr right before bed.

You’ll be so bored you’ll be ready to sleep.

22 Comments Posted (Add Yours)

1

Yeah,Ms. Frost sounds like she could use a little work on her sense of humor and actually relating to other childless people. Hmmm...anyone really CAN publish a book. I really need to get on that!

2

Kristine - YOU should write a book, for heaven's sake!!! You would make the best sellers list for sure. Think about it!!!

3

Even the title is wrong – of course the kids will be other people's if you don't have any of your own. Perhaps "I Hate Kids" didn't sound quite as good.

4

Kerri - I wish!

Christian - The whole book was just kind of 'off' including the title.

5

Didn't read the book but I did catch an interview with the author in which she was trying to defend her position by saying that it was supposed to be FUNNY and not taken that seriously. (Apparently, she has been getting a lot of flack about it, what a surprise.) Since I travel on planes quite a bit and eat in more restaurants than I can count, I too could come up with some stories about children in those situations. But truth is, I always kinda feel sorry for the poor kids that, regardless of their behavior, didn't ask to get put there. They are at the mercy of what their parents want them to do so, why should they take the heat?? THEY'RE KIDS for Gods sake.

Anyway, I agree with Kerri, Kristine should write a book about the funny, sad, frantic, imperfect and down right ridiculous things that occur in the course of child rearing. Now that's a book I would read. And I would actually pay for it and not wait for it to get to the local library. Hey, maybe they would actually make a movie out of it...you know, like The Nanny Diaries. How cool would that be. Who would you want to play you Kristine?

6

Me - it was obviously a sad attempt in trying to be funny (and it could have been) but wasn't.

Book eh? As long as I could make a SH*T load of $$. Don't think I'm a writer however. Wish I was.

7

Hi. How are you? This is actually the first time I've posted on any board regarding my book. So... gonna do some defense work here.

Okay. Here's the deal. The title wasn't mine, if we're getting into semantics. It was Simon and Schuster's. I know hate is a strong word. But they have two other "Hate" books, so they wanted a third for the eventual boxed set. Ah, marketing.

I tried to throw in pop culture references from the last five decades (Leave It To Beaver, Brady Bunch, Cosby Show, Roseanne) to include a larger demographic. I tried to use big and small words, fart jokes and Rudyard Kipling references, in hopes that at least one person would laugh one time. I'm a comedian and writer, I like to make people laugh.

I can't repeat this enough: the book's not a manifesto. It's just for fun. Not everyone thinks it's fun. And how. But alot of people do. That's who I wrote it for. I hate to think that personal trainers went on an attack against the author of I Hate The Gym (an actual book) with tirades like "I hope you get smashed in the face with a 10 pounds dumbell", because a woman said to me in a radio call-in, "I hope if you have children they are ugly and have special needs". The support and attacks have been pretty polarized. It's either "What the hell is wrong with you, you bitter hag?" or "You are leading a revolution!".

Really, I just wrote a little paperback book that's a novelty and that some folks think has some funny stuff in it.

Truth be told, I like kids. I'm good with kids. On my Today Show interview, I sat in the gaggle of them and played with them and let them yank and pull on me as much as they wanted to. I would never wish harm on any child, I promise you that.

There is a difference between person and persona. You may hate my persona, feel free, but today, I guess I just felt like letting you know that I'm a really nice person. I'm sorry you didn't like that book. And I wholeheartedly encourage you to write a book yourself. Write a proposal with a unique voice, get it to an editor and get yourself a book deal. Seriously, get that trajectory going.

You know what? I'll come back here soon. And if you have any questions about the book or why I wrote something or why you think something's not funny or anything... I'll answer it or tell you. Really. If you want to take the time... just a thought.

Anyway, thank you for reading this bit of babbling defensiveness.

Peace and Be Well,

Adrianne Frost

8

Adrianne - I haven't responded to your comment before as I thought it was someone spamming me (impersonating you).

I'm quite honored to have you even acknowledge my site and post (even if I wrote a negative 'review'). Most folks did like your book and you are obviously a successful writer. I am jealous of course!

I'm sorry I didn't like your book. Actually there are parts I did like but thought my post would be more fun if I kept it to the 'bad' parts.

I surely didn't take you seriously that you really hate kids though I can understand why many people do. I also would NEVER say anything as mean spirited as hoping you would have an ugly child with special needs. (That is NOT funny, just rude and cruel and a little psycho it sounds).

My humor is actually a bit off too (I'm the first to admit my neurotic ways) and I love being self-deprecating. I also 'secretly' love to hear stuff about parents who are obviously lunatics. I think that is why I liked your title as I thought the book might be about someone I could relate to as another parent.

Anyway, thanks for your words! I'd love to have you back anytime! I'd love to hear more about you. I too have a little background in acting/modeling. See, www.kristineolson.com. (note, VERY, VERY old, ugly pics)! I also lived for a stint in NYC.

Kristine a.k.a. Lucky Mom
Kristineolson_ny@yahoo.com

9

Don't ever be sorry for having an opinion! I have a great and long time friend who HATES my book! He thinks it's SO unfunny!

I no longer speak to him, but...

Do not feel bad for having an opinion. I was just feelin' all defensive.

Thanks, though.

A

10

Hi Lucky Mom,

I know it's a bit after the fact but thanks for your good review of my book, "Sippy Cups..." I love to know that people enjoyed it. I'm an "older mom" too or as I like to repeat from my doctors "advanced maternal age." Whatever. I do have to say, motherhood has gotten ten hundred times better since my daughter turned a year. I'm so addicted to her my heart hurts constantly. Sappy I know. But I am going to write another book about more annoying things we mothers encounter and like I said, I'm always happy to read nice stuff from people who don't get all over my case because I didn't breast feed long enough.

11

Hi Stefanie,

Thanks for commenting. Your book was great.

I really don't care how long someone breastfeeds or doesn't (and why would anyone care what I think anyway) but I do think it's utterly BIZARRE that there are people who think breastfeeding is gross.

That is something I will never understand.

Your blog: babyonbored.blogspot.com is really good too.

12

I read the book and loved it. There were a few stories that went on too long and had outdated references, but for the most part, she hit the mail on the head. My sister and I talked about how the people that would be the most offended are the people with bratty kids.

13

Serobi - I don't know if other folks were offended by the book or just didn't find it funny. I know I was certainly in the latter category.

Thanks for you comment though. Always good to have differing opinions!

14

I really liked your article... This woman caught my attention on television commenting on B.Spears, and i thought to myself... who let this woman on television... she's so conceited and not funny and has a face for radio... and on top of all that her claim to fame is this readily dismissable book...

15

This is how I get "let on television": CNN's Showbiz Tonight calls me and they let me out of the doghouse to comment on pop culture sometimes.

However, that is not the subject I wish to address:

A "face for radio"?

To personally criticize someone because of their looks is ignorant and offensive. I don't care if you call someone concieted, unfunny or flaunt your opinion of their talent or lack thereof, but to say that they are ugly (or to use your far more eloquent statement) is part of the reason for this culture's obsession with looks and glamour. It is part of the reason our young people suffer from eating disorders and obsess over plastic surgery at the age of sixteen. A young girl who looks like me or has a similar face shape or is at my weight, and feels she looks just fine, could read what you wrote and take that as a sudden blow to their self-esteem.

The next time you decide to attack someone based on their appearance, "conz", please attend to yourself first, for it seems you have a problem with beauty on the inside.

Adrianne Frost

16

I just heard about this book today and I am SOOOO looking forward to this read!! It sounds like a very funny book. I AM a mother of 3 well behaved children and I am always appalled at the behavior of some children in public places. I adore my children but that doesn't mean I want to listen to other kids throwing screaming tantrums in the grocery store or when I am out to eat. I feel like a big part of being a responsible parent is making sure that your children respect other people and their space. It is just common courtesy. And I can completely appreciate the fact that some people genuinely don't enjoy children. They can be quite overwhelming at times. It is stressful to be in any situation where a parent is oblivious to the fact that their children are disrupting or annoying other people. That being said, I know that parents still need to paricipate in the world and can not always predict what their child is about to do. I reserve a little extra patience for when it is a baby or very small child. But I give extra kudos to those parents who are doing their part by taking the screaming child OUT of the theater and who are not letting their kids run wildly up and down the aisles at the store ;)

17

Crazy Daizy,

Thanks for your comments. Well said.

18

I think she's hilarious...and dead on. You people need to get over yourselves. Kids are a pain in the ass and should be seen and not heard...sometimes not even seen. I taught my kids to never raise their voices in public places...to never talk without permission in school...to never speak to an adult unless spoken to first...to never interrupt adult conversations. I teach school and I have seen my share of obnoxious, pain in the ass kids...and obnoxious, pain in the ass parents who believe their kids can do no wrong. Stop making excuses. Being 5 years old is not an excuse to misbehave. You whiny-ass soccer moms need to realize the fact that your kid is just like everyone else and is not the center of the damn universe and teach them to behave themselves and treat others with respect and civility.

19

Hey, Glad Your Kids are Grown... I'm glad your kids are grown too, because thinking of children living with a mother who thinks all kids are a pain in the a** makes me said. Plus you teach school... that's why I homeschool to avoid mean people like you.

I'm really hoping your post is a joke by someone satirizing a crabby person.

20

Hey, Glad Your Kids are Grown... I'm glad your kids are grown too, because thinking of children living with a mother who thinks all kids are a pain in the a** makes me sad. Plus you teach school... that's why I homeschool to avoid mean people like you.

I'm really hoping your post is a joke by someone satirizing a crabby person.

21

that should read "sad" not "said"
Darn.

22

that should read "sad" not "said"
Darn.