the end of innocence

Swoon

Just yesterday driving in the car one of The Boss’ favorite songs came on. I didn’t know it was his favorite song, but he quickly informed me that it was and the kid knows every.single.word.

He sang away in the backseat but I was instantly transported back to my childhood and Wheels Roller Rink. You see, Wheels was the awesomest place ever when Sister Dub and I were little. I’m sure Mumsy and Sister Dub’s Mumsy just loved taking us there every Friday night. Actually I am sure they had a lovely little chat as Dub and skated in unending clockwise circles until BAM it was was reverse skate. We practiced skating backwards, circles and figure eights. Crying our little 7 year old hearts out in the back corner by the lockers when no one asked us to couples skate.

Le sob.

Anyway.

One such Friday night I was really getting my groove on, rocking my skates with the pom pom attachments and coolio denim jeans with roller skate appliques on the back pockets. I’m pretty sure was a rainbow or a unicorn shirt happening as well. There I was skating my little heart out, jamming out to the tunes and singing at the top of my lungs while fluffing my Dorothy Hammil haircut. (which was way out of style by the way).

Suddenly my childhood came to a crashing end. Some guy, about 25 or so…so practically ancient, was laughing at me as I clapped, skated and sang the words. The wrong words.

For the record, I still sing the words wrong.

I love Rock and Roll put another dime in the jukebox baby I love rock and roll come sweetie pie and dance with me.

I went from free abandon enjoyment to devastating self conciousness. Embarrassment practically stopped my orange glittered wheels from rolling. I made a quick escape off the black lit rink and into the corner of the locker bank, my hot tears burning as they ran down my face. Mumsy tried to explain that the young man (probably a father there with his own kid that was jamming out and skating too) wasn’t laughing AT me but rather was enjoying how much I was enjoying myself.

Far too complicated a concept for a 7 year old.

Nope. He was laughing at me because I was clearly  stupid.

Back in the real world, I found myself bemusedly laughing at the Boss’s free spirited rendition of the song. Especially the ‘so we can be alo-wo-wo-wone’ part. He was putting his heart and soul into it, clapping and kicking his feet…I stopped laughing. I started car dancing. Shut it, you know you car dance too.

When the song ended I told Boss that was flat out the best singing ever and if Joan Jett heard him she would hand that song right over and never let anyone else ever sing it. He beamed with pride crying out and signing¬† “AGAIN! AGAIN MOMMY!” Unselfconscious as ever, childhood innocence still in check.

Thank God.

 

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Schooled by a clown.

Photo courtesy of I have no idea, but I wish I did cause it’s awesome.

When I was in Elementary School Ronald McDonald himself came to teach us about fire safety. I guess he was an expert from always being around all those deep fryers and griddles. Maybe Mayor McCheese busted him jaywalking and this was his community service. Whatever it was he was there, in person, and we were stoked! I can only imagine how the teachers were laughing their butts off at us going all Jonas Brothers over Ronald friggin McDonald. ( Dare you to diagram that sentence. Seriously, I need grammar for dummies.)

(Actually don’t, I beg of you. Don’t diagram any of my sentences, I actually need Grammar for Kids Who Went To Hippie Montessori School And Spent All Day Playing Let’s Pretend So When They Got To Public School And Ronald McDonald Came It Was Too Late Because Everyone Already Knew About Adverbs And Multiplication Tables And Such.)

( Anyone know where I can get a copy of that? )

Now, I myself have never been a big fan of clowns, especially ones who are later arrested for *ahem* messing with kids, as this specific incarnation of Ronald McDonald was. And also? Well done on that background check Mickey D’s.

So there we all are in the gym/cafeteria/auditorium being taught the Stop, Drop, and Roll by THE Ronald McDonald. No,  it never occured to us that there could be more than one. He may have hocked Happy Meals but he was a celebrity in our midst you guys!

We all took it very seriously because for reals, who wants to be on fire? Ok, fine so those monks and the dudes who doing it for the movies seem to be cool with it (how does one discover that is your special skill?) But who else? Not this fifth grader thankyouverymuch. I burned my hand on the tailpipe of our volvo (don’t ask) when I was a bitty thing and I was not interesed in reliving that kind of pain.

Stop. Drop. Roll.

Just a note to Ronald for future reference, you might want to specify which way you want the kids to roll because Mike Ferry  got a feel of a lot more than I was prepared for him too. Or maybe you planned it that way. Eeeeeeew.

This weekend I snuck in to check on the kidlet. He had a rough night the night before and I was anxious and desperate for sleep. Please, for the love of all things holy kid, sleep! Using my trusty iPhone as a flashlight I peered in at the crib. (oh you know you do it too, don’t even pretend) when he stirred, rubbing the cutest little fist every over his eyes. I froze. No…

 I STOPPED. I DROPPED.  And then I ROLLED over next to his dresser and held my breath until I was sure he was sleeping peacefully again.

Dang. That creepy clown’s lesson came in handy.

You can take the girl out of Boulder…

Growing up in Boulder, Colorado I never fit in. I hated snow and cold and felt like the only person for miles and miles who passionately hated Tevas, North Face gear and tie dye (my apologies to my good fairy friend NakedJen), I truly thought that all clergy members wore Birkenstocks with socks, because that is totally what every minister I had encountered at that time wore (Until I joined the LDS Church when I was 16 and then later left,which is another post for another time but my experience was completely positive. But yeah…not a lot of Mormon Bishops rocking the Birks at Sacrament meeting). As soon as High School was over I got the heck out of dodge. (We’re all pretending the embarrassing bit where I came back for like 5 weeks for a boy didn’t happen, ok? Ah. The humiliation of youth, or is it the blind faith?)
When I got to California it was like I was reborn…all the things that made me a freak in Colorado, the wacky sense of humor, the offbeat fashion sense, the affinity for humongous Jackie-O shades and the desire to wear high heels to school every day now made me well, fascinating. There were many girls who I admired who had 17 years of California-ness on me and who had simply bloomed under the freedom to accessorize and costume how they saw fit.
It was heaven.
Oh yeah, I was still a train wreck in certain areas and continued to be (hmpf. I’m going with past tense it’s my blog!) for quite a while. Not ingesting any food for years on end can make a gal a little nutty. (See above where I moved back to Colorado for a boy) But I digress.

Quelle Surprise!
I found my footing in California, especially in Los Angeles and when Dub moved to LA it was even better! Dub, who had let me braid ribbons in her hair as 1st graders and also wore her slip on the outside while playing Little House on the Prairie  now was living not only in the same city as me, but the same apartment! It was as if all our let’s pretend games in our childhood had come true.
Heather was the first person I told I was pregnant  (I mean other than Zach and Gaily-O who helped decipher the very first oh-so-faint-test.) and she immediatly said “are you craving anything?” I told her OJ which is so weird because I didn’t like OJ before this. Dub said “oh thank God! I must be having sympathy cravings because I can’t get enough OJ!” I inquired if perhaps she too could be with child. She instantly poo-poohed the idea but a mere two days later she called me to inform me that she was all knocked up! WHOOHOOOOO!! We’ve gone through this before together, of course. We were 7 and both pregnant with Cabbage Patch kids at the time, and we lived in a cute little condo (aka my front porch) I do believe she was married to Rob Lowe and I was married to Michael J Fox…or I was married to Rob Lowe and she was married to Michael J Fox. Whatever.
Heather is, well truly graceful and just friggin lovely. I’m crazy jealous of it. Every boyfriend I ever had in high school eventually uttered the magic words: why can’t you be more like Heather?
Dude. Like I hadn’t been asking myself that on the daily since I was 3.
Heather of course, handled pregnancy with such glowing grace while I meanwhile quickly resembled Jabba the Hut and never stopped puking long enough to get any glow. How one can gain as much as I did whilst puking for 9 months is beyond me, but oh well! Heather wanted natural childbirth (me too!) she walked and did yoga (I hobbled and layed on the couch with a trash can nearby watching Law and Order), she planned on nursing and…what? Umm. No thanks. I was NO on breastfeeding. It just seemed kinda icky and I am not too touchy feely to begin with..so no.
But Heather was doing it.
When we were 11 Heather and I spent every morning up on my roof suntanning. Of course we got stuck on the roof one day and Heather actually got stuck half on and half off, sort of hanging off the roof almost to the fence stuck and kinda scared. (I would have been too!) Obviously in this instance I was the one who had come up with the brilliant plan and thus I was the one in trouble. Dub’s mom asked the age old question:
If Stephanie jumped off a bridge would you? 11 year old Dub just looked at her and said ‘Duh.”
So if Heather is breastfeeding…then so am I!
Heather had Zu 6 whole days before Max joined us so I got to watch Dub get her nursing groove on before I had to awkwardly attempt to imitate her innate motherliness. And she was indeed, a natural.
Who would have thought it, but so was I! Max and I took to nursing like a duck takes to water, and I never looked back. Max is 18 months old now and we’re still going strong. I’ve nursed at IKEA, at the National Cathedral, on airplanes, in restaurants, basically anywhere my kid needs to eat…I feed him! It’s easier now of course, with sippies of hormone free organic milk and yummy biscuits. I find that even though I left Boulder long ago…I am still buying local grown organic veggies and fruits for Max. He eats whole grains and fresh avacado almost daily, I search for organic materials for his clothes. I have been a vegetarian for a hundred years and I am raising Max to eat healthily and cruelty free. His clothes are washed in cruelty free, dye free, perfume free detergent.
I’m a freaking Boulderite after all.
6 week old Max, looking for lunch
But I am NEVER wearing Birkenstocks.