Did you know that tomorrow – 30 April – is International Spank Out Day? I did not know that until Louise, my hockey friend and a new mum, posted the above flyer on FB. Somehow I doubt that Hong Kong’s Health and Social Welfare department had comedy gold on their minds when they joined this campaign. But the mind boggles. I couldn’t stop thinking about the civil service committee meetings and the conversations they had about the SpankOut. Do you think anyone suggested calling it World ‘Spank Off’ Day? Probably that troublemaker from accounting, the one who always stays late waiting on his files to ‘download’.
I did a quick online search and found that plenty of other countries are holding events to mark SpankOut Day aka No Hitting Day, No Smacking Day and the Gandhi-esque sounding: Day of Non-Violence. In the US, the Center for Effective Discipline has put together a helpful guide for a Successful Spank Out Day. (I can hear you laughing so stop it now!) At the risk of sounding cynical and insensitive, I suppose top of that list should read: People! Don’t Fricking Hit Your Kids!
As you know, the goal of any kind of social program like this is to encourage healthy alternatives. So when your three-year-old willfully pours milk on the dog’s head or spoon-catapults macaroni across the room, you don’t reach for the switch. You use your words: call for a time out, explain how dogs are lactose-intolerant and discuss why pasta on the flatscreen isn’t such a great idea. Of course, another alternative (depending on how you define ‘healthy’) would be a quick scan of Craigslist and a willing individual to assist you in your anger management.
Because, after all:
Going to get my licks in while I can 😉 Happy SpankOut Day!