For whatever reason, I sometimes forget that I am an ass. Not to worry, subtle (and not-so-subtle) reminders abound. This morning was no exception.
Firstly, we missed the school bus…a not-so-ordinary occurence with my wily brood, although we seriously flirt with the possibility nearly every morning. Of course, we missed the bus because I am a sorry example of a mother (i.e. I failed to see to it that my children finish their homework the NIGHT BEFORE, so they were forced to complete it as they shoveled Lucky Charms into their faces and slurped orange juice ad nauseam). Ergo, my two dandies became “car riders” on this less-than-stellar morning which, apparently, was a good thing since “all the cool kids are car riders, Mom.”
Secondly, my ineptitude as a dropper-offer-of-kids-at-the-elementary-school is unrivaled in the Northern Hemisphere. Translation: I suck as a chauffeur of smallish creatures that are known to wield backpacks and lunch boxes. Further, my brain simply cannot fathom the driving-on-the-left-side-of-the-road thing whilst traffic whizzes past me ON THE RIGHT, winding in and around an exceedingly large parking lot and buzzing up to the double doors for the celebrated and markedly expeditious deposit of children-ish entities. Everyone but me, it seems, grasps the inherent logic behind said circus-like pattern.
“It’s like the (fucking) Autobahn! With ONCOMING TRAFFIC!” I shriek to my charges, as if they could offer a modicum of support as third graders.
“A) This is COMPLETELY INSANE! B) You’re LATE for school! And C) This is COMPLETELY INSANE!”
A pregnant pause ensues, followed shortly thereafter by Thing One’s expressly pointed commentary from the back seat, “You’re not doing it right, Mom…but I still like being a car rider.”
Joy. Glad someone can see the bright side of my disaster-in-the-making.
“Mom, just follow the arrows and go where that man in the orange vest is pointing………then we won’t crash into Kevin’s mom,” Thing Two instructs, ever the practical child.
Lovely. Crashing into Kevin’s mom sounds like something I’d like to avoid at all costs. I shall heed the orange-vested gentleman’s signals.
Crash or no crash, it’s still entirely likely I’m an ass.
Thirdly, somehow I’ve fallen down on the job of imparting crucial tidbits of information to the impressionable youth in my charge. More specifically, I neglected to inform my kids of the protocol for disembarking during the drop-off period. That said, Thing One tried (and thankfully failed!) to leap from my vehicle as I slowed down to take my place in the endless procession ahead (aka the Escalade Parade).
“No, no, no! You can’t get out HERE, doofus! Wait till I get all the way around to the sidewalk. Then you can hop out, Hon.”
She then fumbled around with her stuff and inadvertently shut the door on her backpack, beside herself with glee over the delicious reality of being a bona fide CAR RIDER instead of a lowly bus goer. “Terrific,” I thought. “She’ll miss the bus INTENTIONALLY tomorrow morning.” As I wended my way through the line (trying like crazy not to rear-end anyone in the process), I quizzed each kid as if they were preparing to parachute into a war zone.
“I don’t have library today, Mom.”
“Oh. Hey, it’s time to get out! GO! GO! GO! There’s a gazillion people behind me! Have a great day!” I shouted after them as they piled out of my Jeep and raced to the school, jackets flapping in the breeze.
“Whoa! Wait a minute!” I rolled down the window and hollered to Thing One, holding up the precious line in the process. “YOU FORGOT TO SHUT THE DOOOOOOOR!” Naturally, she forgot to shut the door because I forgot to quiz her on this all-important sequence of the drop-off event. To make matters worse, I couldn’t shut the stupid door myself (though I tried like mad), nor could I GET OUT and shut it. I feared such action would be viewed as unforgivable by the vast majority of those waiting in line. Further, I assumed the Drop-off Police would then cart me away to be flogged or something equally horrible.
There would be no exiting the vehicle.
So, like a fool, I continued to yell. And in a moment of sheer panic entwined with supreme idiocy, I laid on my horn. Again. And again, not once thinking about the ramifications of my infinitely obtuse actions. I’m certain the people ahead of me in line pegged me for an ass. And rightly so.
“Who honks their horn in the drop-off line?!” they likely bellowed. “My kids are moving as fast as they can, you idiot!”
Needless to say, I wouldn’t blame them for chiding me. I deserved it.
Finally, Thing One realized the mad honker woman was, in fact, me. She then returned to close my door. “Whoops,” she said with a smile. “See you at the bus stop, Mom!”
Indeed, it’s where I belong, ass that I am.
Planet Mom: It’s where I live.
Copyright 2010 Melinda L. Wentzel