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Dianne Salerni : Writer of Teen and Middle Grade Fiction | The Quintessential Absentee Mom

The Quintessential Absentee Mom

Recently on Facebook, I saw a link to the Parenting Blog at the New York Times where one of the most famous “absentee Moms” in the world was interviewed: The Mom from The Cat in the Hat. The interview starts out with the most obvious questions: “Where wereyou???” and continues on from there in a hilarious fashion.  The mother of Sally and the boy (whatever his name was) gives it back as good as she gets, and I highly recommend reading her thoughts on parenting.
I shared the link and was not surprised when my brother-in-law Larry O’Donnell produced one of his late night discourses on the matter. Although this is the first time he’s done so in verse …
Larry O’Donnell speaks out on “Why It Was Better the Mom Was Not There.”
I did not know the Mom in the story.
She never got much of the glory.
She seemed not to know what was what,
And Sally and brother never got caught.
It’s true that the Cat brought Thing One and Thing Two,
And they all did things they never should do. 
Still, we all should note on that awful occasion,
The Cat and his Things did a home invasion.
If Mom had been in that fateful spot,
Could she have stopped them? I think not.
The Kids held the Cat to be true to his word.
To think that was bad would just be absurd.
Mom would have dialed nine-one-one.
Or got the police to come on the run.
The Cops would have quickly surrounded the yard.
They might have brought in the National Guard.
The change in the outcome would have been profound.
The Cat would have gone straight to the pound.
No animal rights group, no cat bail.
The story would have been a terrible tale.
So, let’s all be grateful that Mom was away
So we can enjoy the story today.
The absent Mom should not be in a jam.

I’m glad she was out, says Larry I am.

14 Responses to The Quintessential Absentee Mom

  1. Love it…interesting take 🙂

  2. I’m just glad they got the place cleaned up before the mom got home.

    Great version of the tale!

  3. Julie Dao says:

    I always wondered the SAME thing – where was Mom?! But good point… if she were there, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy the story!

  4. mshatch says:

    Until this became a big thing in the news, I never once thought about the kids being left alone. Loved the interview and loved Larry’s verse, lol 🙂

  5. Rachel says:

    Love Larry’s verse. Made me laugh. I bring it up in a lot of my book reviews that even in YA, the parents are absentee. I love it when books feature parents and make them a stronger part of the story (see – IF I STAY, WHAT HAPPENS NEXT, WHEN YOU WERE MINE, and a few beta mss that I’ve read). I know the parents in my books aren’t always there but they are a part of my character’s thinking for sure!

  6. He he. Great job, Larry! I’m glad the mother was out too.

  7. Lydia Kang says:

    More chaos without mom, that’s for sure! (and more fun)

  8. LOL! That was awesome. I think there are times when it’s necessary for the mom to be out of the room–so kids can be kids, uninterrupted. At the same time there’s always a balance, eh?

  9. Southpaw says:

    I popped over to read the article. It’s hysterical. I like the comparison to the man in the yellow hat!

  10. Tiana Smith says:

    Love this! So clever 🙂

  11. Linda G. says:

    LOL! Great homage to Seuss. Good job, Larry. 🙂

  12. SA Larsenッ says:

    Haha! That’s just awesome!

  13. Larry-I-am is a funny dude. Good job telling the tale in a Seuss-approved manner.

  14. Hi, Dianne, HI, Larry…

    That was AMAZING. SO clever and well done! I really enjoyed it!