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Welcome to Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid

Therapy and sanity for ordinary parents of special kids.

Meet our New Hall of Shame Inductee — John Lackey

Okay, we’ll admit it. We may not be huge fans of perfection, but we’d be lying if we didn’t admit we expected it with our hometown baseball team, the Boston Red Sox (though historically, they have proven to be anything but perfect). As passionate fans, we expect a “wicked” lot of our team and the players who wear the uniform. We’re also pretty knowledgeable about the game and the talent they select. For example, when the Red Sox acquired pitcher John Lackey, who had a successful career with the Anaheim Angels, we thought it was good for the team.  Of course, that quickly changed when he started pitching for us. Within the first few months of being here, he served up more meatballs than our beloved Italian grandmothers combined. And if that wasn’t enough, he always seemed to have a bad attitude, snapping at reporters and making excuses.

We do, however, understand that we may be  a little too critical of players who underperform. (Remember, we drove Bill Buckner into the Witness Protection Program for letting a grounder through his legs during the world championship.) And since we’re always out promoting a message of acceptance, it seemed only right that we stepped up to the plate and became less critical. As a result, we tried to understand some of Mr. Lackey’s transgressions  last season when he chose to drink beer and eat chicken in the clubhouse during the games, contributing to the Hometown Team’s unfortunate collapse last September. We read that his wife was ill and that he was having marital difficulties. Maybe that contributed to his behavior.  However, after reading this piece from Yahoo sports today, we simply have had enough. When asked about his beer-guzzling, chicken-bone-sucking behavior, Mr. Lackeyluster  got very defensive, responding, “Guys having a beer after their start has been going on for the last 100 years.  This is retarded. It’s not like we were sitting up there doing it every night. It’s not even close to what people think.”

Time out on the field. Did he, who has a terrible “image” problem, just use the “r” word?

That’s it! Enough! It’s time to stop cutting Lackey any more slackey. This guy just doesn’t get it. As a professional ball player, he has a platform. Kids are listening to him. What kind of message does that send to them in this day and age of intense bullying? And, if by making this comment, he’s putting down those with mental or developmental challenges, he’s way off base — again.   In our travels, we have met our share of folks with mental challenges who embody all the qualities that winners need — determination, kindness, compassion, resilience.  All qualities, Mr. Lackey seems to be well, lacking.

So Mr. Lackey gather up your bucket-o-chicken and beer.  We think it’s time to send you and your terrible attitude backey.

To read the interview, click here.  Then tell us what you think.




This guy clearly doesn’t get it. First of all, since he’s come to Boston, he’s been nothing but a surly crybaby. Se



2 Responses to Meet our New Hall of Shame Inductee — John Lackey

  1. Elise March 28, 2012 at 1:51 am #

    Okay, while I back you up 100%, let’s not forget that the majority of professional athletes are “wickedly” imperfect in many, many ways. As a society we idolize those professional athletes and expect nothing less than stellar behavior and conduct that implies a well-educated, broad-minded individual who will be an excellent role model for the kids looking up to him/her. Unfortunately, the world of professional sports doesn’t reward stellar behavior, education, or positive role models. So many pro athletes are coached up from a very young age with one goal in mind: going pro. Education becomes a means of getting there, but not in a serious way. Actual education in the form of a degree (because I’m pretty sure that most colleges don’t give degrees in football, baseball, or track) is minimal. College is the bridge to the pros, if college is needed at all. How many basketball players are recruited before they even finish their freshman year? Give a young kid the kind of praise and adoration that these athletes get and it’s not surprising that they become entitled, whiny, and resistant to “suggestions.” As in, “I suggest you stop using the “r” word,” said the image consultant. We expect Matt Damon and we get the kids from Jersey Shore. However, none of that makes idiotic behavior acceptable. We just need to choose our role models more carefully.

  2. Catherine March 28, 2012 at 9:58 am #

    I suspect he’s more clueless than anything else. He probably grew up around people who used the word with some regularity and it does not occur to him that it is offensive. No one in his current circle points it out to him. The real test is, once called out for his poor word choice, does he change his behavior?

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