Monday, October 27, 2014

The BROchure and the Awkward Joys of Parenting

A few weeks ago we got the letter. 

The letter from school. 

The letter from school explaining how they were going to be having the girls and boys and puberty presentation.

Oh boy.  I was NOT ready for this already.  Didn't I just bring this kid home from the hospital?  Wasn't he JUST learning how to walk and swing on the swings by himself?  Wasn't it just yesterday that he took off the water floaties and swam in the deep end all by himself?  Damn it if we're not talking about puberty already.  So I prepared myself.

Just weeks earlier, he had caught us in the act of sneaking the money under the pillow for the tooth fairy.  We were found out.  Although, he didn't ask any other questions, I'm sure it's coming.  My boy is not a baby anymore.  He's in this in-between area, stuck between boy and dude. 

So he came home from school that day and didn't say anything about the puberty presentation.  He must have said something to Dalai Dad and so I was curious what they talked about.

"How was school today?" I cautiously asked.
"Anything exciting happen?"
"Did they talk about the puberty stuff today?"
"Yeah.....they gave me a BROchure."

Just like that.  He said "BROchure."  I tried not to die laughing.  How fitting that he would interpret the hand-out that they gave him as the "BROchure." 

"Oh, cool."  I said.  "Did you learn anything new?  Anything you didn't know before?"
"No. Not really.  I'm gonna get hairy underarms and stuff."

And away he went.  Into his room, leaving the BROchure sitting on the table. 

Curious, I picked it up and started reading.  It had the usual stuff...your body is going through changes, yada, yada, yada.  You will be getting taller, your voice will change, your shoulders will get broader, you will get armpit hair and more body hair.  You will experience erections.  YIKES!  The BROchure had a diagram of a penis.  This was heavy duty stuff for my baby who had just found out about the Tooth Fairy!

As he emerged from his room, he caught me reading the BROchure.  "MOM!  You can't look at that!" he shouted at me as he ripped it from my hands. 
"Why not?  I wanted to know what you guys talked about today."
"Well, because.  You can't be reading the BROchure!  It's for dudes!"
"Well, it's fine.  I know all about the stuff in that BROchure anyways.  It's not new information to me."
"What? How do you know about all the stuff in the BROchure?"
I thought for a minute...."Because I'm a teacher.  And teachers have to learn about that stuff when they are doing child development classes and stuff.  It's ok."
"Oh, ok. But just don't be looking at my BROchure anymore, okay?"  He stomps off back to his room taking the BROchure with him. 

And that was that.  The BROchure showed up, made everything awkward and now he knows that I know all about penises.  Why does parenting have to be so complicated?

He and Dalai Dad had a good father/son camp out this weekend and hopefully they had a chance to talk about any dude stuff that, obviously, moms aren't supposed to know about. 

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Friday, October 3, 2014

People Are Strange

Last week, I took my show on the road and went to New Orleans for five days.  Equipped with no less than three pairs of flip flops and three different purses, I was ready to take on the Big Easy.  My flip flops proved to be completely useless but fun was had regardless.

We were hardly out of the Illinois when the realization was made that this would prove to be a memorable trip.  I started a list of strange and/or interesting things that we encountered along the way. 

Here's my list (please note that once you are actually in New Orleans, strange weirdos are around every corner, so I kind of stopped keeping track at some point.): 

  • random diaper pin laying on the ground
  • hot airplane pilot
  • lady with too much Botox
  • an Asian man eating a tomato in the airport terminal
  • random tap dancing lady
  • a clown smoking a cigarette
  • a man in a gorilla suit (really, it was like 100 degrees!)
  • a dude wearing a skirt and tights with bright pink hair
  • a parade of women (and men) all wearing bridal gowns
  • my sister in law caught the bouquet!!
  • a stripper wearing her "uniform" on a public street at 4:30 pm
  • a chick with no top and pasties on a public street at 4:35pm
  • random calliope music everyday at 5:30pm (never did figure out where it was coming from)
  • a midget leprechaun wearing a loin cloth
  • lady with a rip in her undies (oops)
  • a lady painting her toenails on the sidewalk waiting for Payless Shoes to open
  • the smell of BO, hot garbage and piss
  • the Halloween costume shop that also doubled as an adult toy store (surprise!!)
  • two chicks dressed in dominatrix clothing, punishing their dude on a public street (I promise that was NOT me!)
  • Reverend Arby-B-Q preaching out in front of the Arby's
  • the hot dog cart guy cussing out the pedicab driver (yea, tell 'em!)
  • a guy dressed like Homer Simpson sitting on top of a garbage can
  • the grumpy croissant
  • dancing with a homeless man in the middle of Bourbon St. (I think at this point I became one of the strange, weirdos)
In addition to all these wonderful things, NOLA also provided many delicious things to eat.  We ate beignets....

We got to see beautiful architecture...


We visited historical sites and investigated points of interest....

We stumbled down the 'tricky' cobblestone streets of the French Quarter....

 We met many interesting people and animals, we made up fictional characters and told their stories, and we admired from afar...


We took in all the music, parades and art of New Orleans....

Altogether, I would say it was a trip that I will never forget! 


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Thursday, October 2, 2014

Life Experienced: New Orleans

If you spend a significant amount of time anywhere things seem to become commonplace. For example, I have been in New Orleans for 24 hours and the first parade I saw was fascinating. After seeing so many now it's no big deal to see a parade of people dressed in tutus and glitter parading down the street to a full brass band.

While the stench of Bourbon St. was, at first, enough to turn my stomach, after a few days, I could notice that memorable smell as it wafted down side streets on the breeze.  It was still absolutely disgusting but a little less shocking, nonetheless.

In addition, after seeing so many strangely dressed people, not much is surprising. For instance, once you see a lady walking around with nothing on but a pair of short shorts and some pasties to cover her nips, seeing the lady with the ripped out hole in her pants with no undies was so passé.

Yesterday I happened upon a beautiful man sunbathing by the pool. That experience prepared me for the man passed out face down by the pool today.
The lesson here is that life experience can soften the blow for more extreme situations later on. Some lessons are best learned by life experience. You can quote me on that.

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