In true Part 2 fashion, I will bring you up to speed with a long-story-short version of part 1. Basically, I got a phone call from a mom who wanted our boys to have a play-date, which at first seemed like a great idea. Then, her arrival reminded me that I have become that mother I would have said was off her rocker a few years ago. You know the type, too many kids, too many pets, too many irons in the fire, too messy of a house, too loud of music, and too many video games! Yep, I’ve become her!
I can only tell you that I once held a much more prudish attitude! Our house was cleaner, and our toys were perfectly separated – Barbies did not touch Leggos and puzzles and books were perfectly shelved. We even had grass perfectly covering the front yard, and video games were rarely touched; but that was then, and this is now. Now I’m scraping tile off the kitchen floor while listening to inappropriate rock songs that make me giggle. What can I say?
So as the afternoon progressed, it finally dawned on me that Bashful Betty and her crew weren’t leaving. Her plan wasn’t to drop off her son for some play time, No! Her plan was to make a new friend, and being that she is a terribly nice lady I tried my darnedest to find some common ground. But, by the time we had the music and video game discussions, I knew that was going to be a tough row to hoe.
Then a visit from my nephew Colton gave me an idea. “Aunt Tiffany, I don’t think I have ever seen you not on your phone, or the internet! I’m offended that you never behave like this in front of me!” Colton’s 19, so giving me a hard time is his favorite pass-time. “Don’t be offended, you get to see the real me!” And then the idea popped, if I just be myself, she will either lighten up, or go home, so I promptly sat myself in front of the computer and proceeded to check out my social media. Facebook, WordPress, DeviantArt, Twitter… yep, I was online!
“We don’t have internet. I’ve thought about getting it, but it just hasn’t been too important.” Ok, I know I have already used the phrase “Stop the Presses” once in reference to my interactions with this lady, but I repeat, Stop the Presses! This is 2012, how do you function without the internet? No Google to help the kids with homework or map out a route? No Facebook to fill the boredom that sets in at 2am when sleep refuses to come to you. No YouTube videos to teach you how to tape and float sheet rock, find the Mitsubishi in Grand Theft Auto, or hook up surround sound? (YouTube has tutorials for everything, even wiping your butt! If you don’t believe me, look it up! Ok…. you can quit watching that video now and get back to my blog.) “Nope, we’ve never had internet, it just doesn’t seem that important!” Is this lady human? I’m thinking she’s possibly the long-lost 3rd Rock character. Then I find out she doesn’t know what Twitter is. Not everyone uses Twitter, not everyone likes Twitter, but it’s like Apple Pie, you have got to know what it is… Don’t you? The bright side (because I am forever seeking a bright side) is that she also doesn’t know what a blog is, so she isn’t likely to ever read any of the things I’ve shared with the world wideweb.
Despite her lack of technology or social media, I was still determined to call this day a success. I mean this lady is one of those people who is so nice you just can’t stop looking for a way to bridge the gap, and since she does possess a cell phone, she is living partially in this century. Finally, I look at the clock and realize 4:oo has snuck up on me. I told her that I had not yet made it to the grocery store, and soon it would be time to pick up the munchkins from nursery school, and thought for sure she would gather her little ones and call it a day. Instead, I found myself digging through Blondie’s closet for a T-shirt to satisfy the little girl who was devastated that in a game of chase her shirt had been stretched. Lucky me, I found something so cute Blondie refuses to wear it, and crisis averted.
As the clock ticked, I talked more about the many things I still needed to accomplish for the day. And still, she remained steadfast at my kitchen table. It took me back to years ago, when Pickles was a baby- My mother-in-law used to say her day was ruined by “Ass Sitters”. Now, I typically avoid profanity on my blog, but there is no other name for these people who come over, plant themselves in your path, keep you from accomplishing anything and then refuse to leave. So, I text my mother-in-law “Help, I have an Ass Sitter and I don’t know what to do!”
At this point, it was 5:30, and I had let the woman know countless times that being late to pick up my children would result in a by-the-minute-per-child fee. When I point-blank asked her to move her car out of my way, she replied “Oh, are you kicking us out?” with a pouty face! Lucky me, my mother-in-law came over, threw out some absurdities, and my visitor hurried to her car. (Why didn’t I text MIL sooner?) Finally… I got my day back, but it was too late to get the pile folded, the tile scraped, or the groceries bought.
I survived the day, put it behind me, and what did I get last Friday? A text wondering if the boys could play together on Saturday. But we were busy with baseball, so another text, “would Sunday work then?” She was determined to get on the schedule.
When she threw in a mention that her girl and my boy didn’t get along, I didn’t offer to fix it. Instead, I took that as my silver lining! That way, we’d just leave it at the boys playing together for the day. Sunday came, she showed up, and I met her outside. I decided to be more assertive and lay out the plans for the day, while using my body language to say “no, you can’t come in”.
As she met me at the porch, her husband stepped out of the car, and you’re never gonna believe what happened next! I knew this man. I remembered him clearly. There was no mistaking him, this man had once chased me around the laundry mat for weeks. When Pickles was a baby, our washer and dryer didn’t work, and I took our clothes to the end of town every few days to do the wash. This man flirted with me constantly, smiled at me crookedly, winked at me wickedly, and when I finally blurted out “thanks, but I’m married” he said “me too, it doesn’t matter…” Thanks to him I got a new washer and dryer!
So he approaches me, holds out his hand and says “nice to meet you.” “Meet me? I know you! Don’t you remember me? From the Laundry Matt?”
There are times when I wish I had 24 hour surveillance cameras just so I could go back and show the world how funny my life really is! If I did, I would freeze frame his face at that moment, along with the cross expression his wife then offered. The little girl in the window repeatedly hollered out from the car “do I get out now” and I finally answered with “would you like to pick him up at 7:30?”
Relieved, the husband took the out I offered up and led them back to their mini-van. As they walked down the driveway, I heard Betty say “we will find something else to do.” My theory was correct, she was on the hunt for a new BFF.
When my Hubby walked in the door, he realized we had a new kid in the zoo crew, and I couldn’t wait to tell him exactly who this kid’s daddy was! But the kid is awesome. He’s sweet, and he plays well with Tucker because he actually likes watching people hog the video game. Of course by the time his parents came to fetch him, guess where the boys were? That’s right, I wasn’t exactly sure! Mom of the year here had let them take off on the go-kart, only checking every now and then to make sure I could still hear the hum of the motor in case they ran out of gas. They all started to pile out of their mini-van when my hubby walked over and shook the Daddy’s hand.
He tried to introduce himself, but my hubby stopped him mid-sentence with a firm grip and said “yeah, I know who you are! I know EXACTLY who you are!” Wait! What was that? Did someone just defend his territory? I do think so… In fact, I am somewhat impressed!
So they loaded back into their car, and as they left, I jumped in my car to run to Wal-Mart. I get a text thanking me for letting them play just as I pulled into the parking lot. “Sure, anytime! The boys really had fun.” I replied right after I parked. I looked up, and who did I end up parked in front of? You guessed it! And was she waving her phone in the air at me, saying “I just texted you back!” (Smiley face, smiley face, smiley face!)
“Oh yeah?! It hasn’t come in just yet!” (Smiley face) I waved back as I headed into the store. Be-beee-beeep. “Well maybe next time you and I can get together while the boys play! We can spend some quality time – Really get to know each other!!”
Quality time? Sure, just hit me up on Facebook and we’ll get that started…..