Monday, April 23, 2012

Soccer Coach, Stoned

Sorry to bore you with another soccer story but such is my life right now. So, for my oldest daughter's team we carpool with 2 other families. Without going into too many details, the girls' coach is mercurial and often cruel. She trains them at the intensity of a professional team, including having them carry each other on their backs for sprints and jumping side-to-side over a cowering fellow teammate wearing cleats (yes, ouch). Every time I drive (and presumably with other parents, too), our three little girls concoct ways to kill their coach without getting caught. Sometimes, after a particularly vicious drubbing, they don't even care about serving time and just want immediate results. While cast as a big joke, their ideas are quite elaborate and absolutely cold-blooded.

What made me laugh/cringe this week was that three OTHER girls from the team arrived in THEIR carpool with their soccer shorts full of pebbles to throw at the coach if she was too mean to them! I pictured a scene from biblical times (or modern day Afghanistan?) peppered with a dash of Monty Python. She's a witch!! Stone her!!!!!

Time to shop around for a new team??? I think so.

Spell Check in Aisle Three!

Who ticked off the nuts?

Exhibiting great self-restraint (for me), I managed not to pose that question-- or any of the 15 variations on that theme bouncing around in my head-- to the checkout lady.

Friday, April 20, 2012

A Real No Know

One of my most cringe-worthy memories is from high school (natch).  I decided, mid-assembly, that the candidates running for senior class president were too clique-specific and lame and that I would be a far more universally liked and desirable choice.  Unfortunately, I didn't consider that by volunteering to run for office I would be forced to stand up and present a platform.  Right then.  On stage.

Yeah, I had nothing.  It was a rambling speech that stressed only my ability to straddle the line(s) between all the different generically Breakfast Club-like factions of our grade.  Think Sally Field's "You Like Me!" only less earnest and more deer-in-headlights.  Not quite enough to win an election.  My grade was wiser, evidently, than the "who would you rather have a beer with?" population of America: they chose the smartest kid with the best ideas (even though he was a founding member of the Existentialist Club.  I am not making that up.  Yes, it was private school.).  Imagine that!

My political career may have been short-lived but it was honest: I did get along with most of my senior class (minus one obligatory blood-feud-of-forgotten-seventh-grade-origin frenemy). There was, however, one girl who drove me insane.  She was a super-eager, sugary sweet hanger-on who was desperate to be popular.  She laughed too much.  She talked too much.  She inserted herself (inanely) into conversations.  And, while I tried to tolerate her, one day she pushed me over the edge.

We were all just hanging out during a free period or after lunch or something and she was blabbering on about some nonsense when she said (to me):  "Omigod, I was so crazy this morning that I ran out of the house with two different color socks on.  I felt like you!  Isn't that such a you thing to do?!"

Record scratch.  What???  I was no Rachel Zoe back then (still not).  But I had never, would never leave the house with two different color socks on.  By accident or on purpose.  I wasn't wacky or zany or absent-minded or anything like that.

Coming from anyone else I probably would have just let it roll off of me but, man, I tore that poor girl apart.......

Flash-forward to yesterday morning.  Standing at the bus stop, I realized that I had forgotten to write a "bus note" for my son to go home with a friend after school.  I quickly borrowed a pen from one boy and found a scrap of paper in my son's bag to scribble on.

A fourth grade neighbor girl said (to me): "You always forget to write your notes for school."

Simultaneous record scratch and flashback.  What???  This was, I think, the absolute first time I had ever forgotten to write a note.  And for sure it was the first time I had ever written one at the bus stop.

I reined in my inner, indignant 17 year old and calmly told the little girl that, in fact, she was mistaken.

And that she must have me confused with her mother.  

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Girls Will Be Boys

Overheard in my car on the way down to U11 soccer practice:

Girl 1: I like your shorts!

Girl 2: Thanks! I got them from the Boys' department. In fact, I get all my clothes from the Boys' department.

Girl 1: Me too! My mom says I should at least set foot in the Girls' section at Target so I literally put one foot in the Girls' section than head straight over to Boys'.

My daughter: I hate girl clothes.

Girl 2: I don't have ANY girl clothes.

Girl 1: Me neither ... Oh yes I do!!! My soccer uniform!!!!!

All: (hysterical laughter)

Me: (note to self: marketing opportunity in boy-fit girls' clothes)

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Yum(my) Mum(my)

Easily the best effort-to-outcome ratio to date.  Happy spring!

Friday, April 6, 2012

The Scent of a Woman

As I've mentioned before, I have a very sensitive sniffer.

I'm guessing that's why I'm not much of a perfume wearer; and why my idea of hell is a Yankee Candle store.

And yet, I find myself in love with a fragrance. To the point where I even bought a hippie dippy diffuser thingy with bamboo reeds in the hope that my house will be.... infused.

A few days ago I would have mocked the diffuser. Today, I am sizing up various vessels in my home, assessing whether they could serve as auxiliary bamboo reed holders. I simply can't get enough of this smell!
It's called Mandarin Coriander. It's somewhat reminiscent of Calyx (the Prescriptives perfume) but fresher and less aggressive-- and without the negative association of my nutso college roommate who practically bathed in that stuff.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Golly Gee

Growing up, there were a handful of albums that were always stacked on the record player (I know. So old. Shut up.): Cat Stevens, Simon and Garfunkel, Godspell, Pippin, Sesame Street Fever and Come on and Zoom.

Remember Zoom?  I was never really into the show (it skewed older. I was--and still am-- a Sesame Street kid) but, man, I loved that album.  The cover opened up like a book and had the lyrics to the songs printed inside.  I spent hours listening to the music while studying the words and pictures (as I recall, the illustrations were amateurish and somewhat disturbing).

One of my favorite songs was a riddle called Fannee Doolee.  Fannee Doolee hates to read, but she loves a good book.  She hates to bake, but thinks it's fun to cook.  And on and on.  What's Fannee's deal? Why is everything about her a contradiction?  It's revealed in the reprise: Fannee only loves things with double letters.

I found myself thinking about Fannee Doolee the other day when forced to recognize the pervasiveness of a major contradiction within myself:  I won't back down from any argument but I shy away from confrontation.  Or, in Fannee's terms, I hate to pick a fight but I do love to battle.  

This is not a revelation.  What was surprising was the ridiculous way in which my little quirk manifested itself this past week.  The last time I was at our town's library (my favorite place in town), they told me I had two overdue books.


I take out at least twenty books for me and the kids each week, which-- as someone who hates to lose things-- I've always recognized as a potential disaster.  In order to keep tabs on the books in the house, the kids and I long ago established a system.  Okay, "system" is overstating it-- it's really just a reusable grocery bag (the library bag).  If a book is not being read, it is in the bag.

I checked to see if maybe they reshelved the books without checking them in.  Nope.  Hmmm.  A shadow of doubt crept in.  I scoured the house and car but no books.  Where could they be?  It didn't make any sense.

Unwilling to admit defeat or face the circulation desk, I renewed the lost books online.  And then.... I stayed away from the library.

So lame!  Is a lost book even a conflict?  What, exactly, was I avoiding?  Finally, today, I went back to the library, checkbook in hand.  But first I swung by the children's room one last time to check the shelf.  And there were my missing books. Hah!

I hate to gloat but I do so love being correct.