Tuesday, November 28, 2017

How I Wound Up in a Tub Full of Listeria-Ridden Foam Cubes for the Second Time in Three Days

“Can I finish ONE goddamned sentence without you interrupting me with ‘MOM! MOM! MOM?!’ Just ONE sentence?! Can’t you see we’re trying to figure this out? GAWD!!”

Three adults were trying to solve a problem. A problem I alone created. And three kids bouncing like pinballs in the back seat of my friend Michelle’s minivan were 100% determined to make finding the solution as hard as possible.

I had just provided Geoff with heavy ammunition for his case against me. You know what I mean by the “case.” I’m talking about the flashpoints in every marriage that reinforce one person’s negative views of the other, over and over again.

This particular flashpoint theme was “Libby spends every second in NYC napping due to alleged ‘overstimulation’ or mired in a sticky web of old-parent anxiety, bad-friend guilt, and/or bric a brac-triggered nostalgia that numbs her parenting reflex and keeps her from doing THE ONE JOB Geoff asked her to do.”

In this particular case, THE ONE JOB was to look up the hours of the Liberty Science Center in New Jersey.

Living in Juneau for so many years means I am woefully out of practice at researching the hours of large facilities online. So I’d made the rookie mistake of trusting the Google hours as opposed to going to the actual museum’s website, so that “open every day” turned out to be “closed on Mondays.”

This would not have been a big deal, but for the fact that it was Monday, and we were a mere three exits away from our destination when I realized my error, thus committing us all to 1.5 hours of unnecessary Turnpike traffic. Michelle, child and work-free for the day, was driving and couldn’t have given less of a shit, but agreed with me that yes, the traffic was in fact a lot worse than it used to be.

Geoff and the kids were, predictably, far less forgiving.

Suddenly, the science center that my shamefully intellectually incurious spawn had whined for 45 minutes straight would be SO BORING was a must-see, whose closure was a tragic disappointment courtesy of their mother. A disappointment that might now never be rectified. 

Geoff piled on, listing every self-indulgence on my iPhone--Facebook, Twitter, texting, cat memes, etc.--that is NOT looking up information we actually need. Indeed, the only thing saving my good name in his eyes was the fact that he wasn’t the one driving.

No matter. We salvaged the day. And how did we do it? By acquiescing to greasy food preceded by the third trampoline park visit in as many days. 

There I discovered that for the low-low price of I'm not even counting anymore, I could test the elasticity of my boobs (FAIL) while tempting fate to a second ACL tear, discover that I needed new bras a lot more than I'd realized, and contract listeria in a giant pit full of green and yellow foam cubes that were surely the vector of every viral and bacterial illness carried by children aged 3-13.

Michelle and I shouldered past the Real Housewives of Yonkers-type moms with their kids, standing around in lip gloss, Ugg boots, Lulu Lemon leggings, tunic sweaters, and flat-ironed straightened hair. They had the good sense to just mill about their strollers gossiping. 

Not me! I had the good sense to challenge Michelle to a duel with cushioned battering rams, and push her and me into a tub full of soft, cushy disease cubes. There we laid for the better part of our 60 minutes of "jump time," expressing relief that maybe we would now both die of listeria before Trump could nuke us all.

O.H.M. saves the day once again.

1 comment:

  1. Yaaaasss qweeeuuunn! I love the problems that I can throw money at and they will go away. Now where's my lipgloss?


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