Tuesday, August 18, 2009

King of the Ladies

(Or: World's Worst Mother Update)

It's a bit difficult to grocery-shop with kids. Despite that, if I shop by myself, I find that I miss them. So I instituted some rules to try and make the process easier. I ask the boys to recite the rules each time we walk into the store ... where they proceed to break each and every one of them. But I figure one day they'll stick.

"What are the rules of the grocery store?" I ask. "Don't run away from Mommy!" Einstein will say. "Don't grab things off the shelves!" Pumpkin will say. "No one pushes the cart but Mommy!" "No yelling!" Sometimes they make up their own. "Don't talk to strangers unless Mommy says it's okay!" That one's not specific to the store, but it's a good one anyway.

A few weeks back they kids learned a new rule before we even went into the store. That rule is: avoid confrontation.

The parking lot for this supermarket has your usual layout--rows of spaces you can zig-zag up and down. There are also spaces along the back of the lot, facing out toward the street. On this particular day I turned down the car down one parking aisle and decided it was simpler to just head straight to the back. I did that, but as I was putting the car in park I noticed a car moving slowly behind ours, perpendicular. It had come around the perimeter as I was headed down the middle, and in a flash I realized that I may have gone right for the space without looking to the sides as I crossed over the perimeter access, and nearly ran into the crossing car.

In my rear view I could see the car behind ours inching forward. The man driving it was looking in my direction, and although he was wearing dark sunglasses, I could sense the accusatory stare behind them, and I could tell he wanted to impart his unhappiness. I waited. The kids asked why I wasn't getting out of the car. "Okay..." I said, to my windshield. "Just keep going..." The kids were confused, of course. I explained that the driver was mad at me and that I really did not want to talk to him. To them this seemed completely appropriate. Eventually the driver moved on, and parked at the other side of the lot. I whipped the kids out of the car as quickly as I could, just in case he came back to yell at me.

Moral: If you almost cause an accident, play dumb, and use your kids as a buffer whenever possible.


Holding hands and skipping is a great workout for the shins. It will also improve your mood, guaranteed.


There is nothing like ascending an escalator toward a little boy standing there with his arms stretched out in front of him, waiting patiently for you to reach the top.


Pumpkin made a crown at school, and he was planning to sleep with it on his head. "So I can be king while I sleep," he explained. But then he changed his mind, took it off and handed it to me. I put it on my head. Pumpkin looked at me for a moment and then declared, "You're King of the Ladies!"


And a WWM bonus:

"Mama!" from somewhere else in the house.

"WHAT?!?!?!" said in an annoyed and exasperated tone, conveying how tired I am of being called for the 900th time while I'm trying to make dinner.

"I love you."