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Unsafe Safety Latches


I’ve been frazzled.

Last week I literally had no obligations.

I had no work and by some religious miracle there seemed to be no Jewish holidays last week – so the kids actually went to school everyday!

I have been waiting for a day when I had nothing to do since the 80’s.  I have had a very clear plan in place for some time.

In 1985, at the very young age of 7, I decided what I would do if a day free of obligations ever came my way.

I knew without a shadow of a doubt that I would spend the day in a lounge chair in a black lace bra and shorts, calling friends on my huge cordless phone.

I would drink wine and champagne and Cheetos and listen to cassette tapes…..

 

 

Now that the day is finally here….I think I am too old and fat for my plan……

So I at least took time every day to work out and shower and shop, which was all very luxurious.

I cooked. I cleaned.

I wandered around the house looking out the windows.  Things were pretty orderly, but yet…..I felt disorganized.

I kind of flip-flopped around the house feeling under-utilized and confused.  Didn’t anyone need anything from me??

Apparently all of this not being needed makes me very tired, because on Tuesday, Michael woke me up to ask me for help with his pants.  I rolled over and saw that the clock said 8:19.

Just so we are all on the same page, the bus actually comes at 8:09.

That was a bad morning.

Later in the week I was supposed to go to my mother’s for her birthday and I said I would make a cake when I got to her house.  I went to the store to get specific ingredients to go along with the cake – and I realized at 7 PM that night as we were making dinner, that I forgot the cake mix.  It was a stupid thing that I would have never done if I had 2 screaming babies with me all week and a full plate at work.

It seems now, the less I have to do – the more of a disorganized hot mess I become.

On Thursday, I had to drive the kids to school because Sam had to make a boat for a school project and we didn’t think it would make the trip to school safely on the bus.

I woke up early – so that I could have coffee and get ready for the gym.  My plan was to drop off the kids and be at the gym by 8:35.   We were doing great, as we loaded into the car I thought about “drop-off.”

At school there are very strict guidelines about how you can actually “DROP OFF” your child.

Whereas “dropping off” used to be a term used casually for leaving something or someone somewhere….it is now a full, very serious ACTION that requires strict attention to rules and regulations, or risk ruining the well-oiled machine that is “DROP-OFF.”

One of said rules is that parents must DROP OFF from the right-hand side of the vehicle onto the sidewalk.  Children cannot get out on the left-hand side and mothers cannot under any circumstance help their children get out of the car.

Children need to get out swiftly and efficiently or they will cause a back-up of angry Land Rovers and Escalades.  Lord forbid there’s any problem with seatbelt unfastening or backpack forgetting – you have to just drop-kick your kid to the curb or risk starting a riot.

In the world of child-safety locks this often means that children are locked in the back seat until the DROP OFF NAZI ON DUTY notices and opens the door for them.

This particular morning I said “Kids – I am just going to undo the child safety latch on the door – so when we get to school – you can just hop out on your own.”

While the kids got settled, Sam gingerly holding his boat on his lap – I went over to the door and flipped a switch.

I slammed the door shut and it bounced right back at me. I had turned something so that the door was unable to shut at all.  I fiddled with it and started to freak out after repeated attempts of fixing the problem didn’t work.

I was sweating and swearing as I stared at the little label next to the latch, trying to figure it out.

I stared at this for a good ten minutes thinking…ok, a kid popping out of a space suit and a kid with his space helmet on…..what does this have to do with the door????

Finally in a moment of strong and confident mothering I said, “Kids – I am going to get you to school….Sam hold the door while I drive.”

He looked at me with horror, with eyes and mouth open wide.

He handed his boat to Michael and held on tight to the door handle as I peeled out of the driveway.

We were 15 minutes late at this point.  As I rounded the corner out of our street the velocity pulled on the door and it threatened to open but Sam held strong.

“I can’t do it Mom!!! I am going to let go!!” he screamed.

“You can do it Sam!! Don’t let go – no matter what!!” I screamed back.  All the while Michael was laughing and calling my name over our hysterics.

“What Michael?” I finally answered.

“Well what will you do when we get to school? Who will hold the door for you when you drive home?”

I peered back at him in the rearview mirror.

I hadn’t thought this through, had I?

“I will call Daddy,” I announced with dread.

When we got to school – I left the door wide open while I signed the kids in at the front office.  I called Mr. Gaga a couple of times and he didn’t answer.  Finally on the 4th call he answered he had been in a meeting.  When I explained the pickle I was in, he was not happy.

“Well, you are going to have to wait…I’m in the middle of something,” he said in a very angry tone and pretty much hung up on me.

In his defense I have called him 3 times since school started requesting him to come home for various reasons involving loss of keys for homes and vehicles.

I knew I was dead, and it would be in my best interest to figure this thing out.

If I could figure it out – Mr. Gaga wouldn’t have to leave work and our marriage could be saved!

I figured I could tie the door shut somehow using something I had lying around in the car.  Apparently when I told the kids a while back to keep the car clean – they took me seriously because I didn’t have much in the way of materials to work with.

When I thought I found something that I could use, I called Mr. Gaga and told him I was going to jimmy something together and that he didn’t need to come.

“Too late,” he grumbled.  “I am on my way.”

I stood outside of the car waiting for him.  When he arrived he marched over to the car and I forgot I had left my materials tied to the door.

“Really? Are you serious????? What were you going to do with that?” he asked with disgust, pointing at the door.

This seemed like as good a plan as any…..

“I was going to tie it shut!!” I answered back defiantly.

He pulled the door handle up from the outside, a little click noise happened and he shut the door gently.

I looked down at the shut door. “How the heck did you?…..”

Then I looked up at him as he turned around.

He started to go back towards his car but stopped to let a car go.  The woman waved him to go across.

He said “Go ahead! I’m going to slap her around a little bit!!!” and made a motion of slapping me in the face.

The minivan pulled up and a chinese woman rolled down the window, she called out in broken english.

“You Sam mother?”

“Yes!” I said fake-smiling.  (*Since Sam has been in school all of 3 weeks, his charms, good looks and guido-like tendencies have made him famous and relegated me to simply “Sam’s mom.”)

“You OK?” she asked me , gesturing towards Mr. Gaga with disgust.  Her eyes bored deep into mine so that she could accurately be able to read my cry for help.

“Oh no I’m fine ! He’s just kidding!” I said in a text-book response of an abuse victim.

As she drove slowly away, I said “Oh great…now everyone is going to think you beat me!”

We had a little chuckle which lightened the mood a bit.  He got in his car and peeled out.

It was 9:00 am.

All that and I still had 6 1/2 more hours of confusion and disorganization ahead of me.

I HAVE TO GET MY SHIT TOGETHER OR MR GAGA IS GOING TO LEAVE ME…..IN THE MEAN TIME PLEASE CLICK THE BANNER BELOW SO AT LEAST I KNOW THAT SOMEBODY LOVES ME AND NEEDS ME AROUND HERE!!! XO, LADY GOO GOO GAGA

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4 responses »

  1. I very rarely laugh out loud. I chuckle. I nod. I say, “that’s funny”, but I rarely audibly guffaw. This post conjured a literal LOL.

    We have drop off Nazis. The entire universe might as well come to a halt if the kid doesn’t sprout wings and promptly fly from the car. These drop off Nazis want super heroes. With powers to fly through closed car doors, lunch box and back pack in tow. It’s just not possible.

    Since you’re funnier than hell, I nominated you for a blog award. I posted it today.

    Great post, as always.

    Reply
  2. Very funny post!! I get it…the less you have to do the less actually gets done.

    Reply
  3. Yes, yes, yes, what is up with the whole drop-off procedure bullsh**? We have a MANUAL on how to do it. I haven’t done it once because I’m scared I’ll do it wrong. I think that your brain is in recovery from years of having constant demands on your time. Now that it’s got a little wiggle room, it’s eating it up. That’s my **professional** opinion.

    Reply
  4. The mom’s at my school have total disregard for the rules of the DROP OFF. Kidding aside, I’m surprised no one’s been hit yet.
    This cracked me up this morning…it’s like I was there!

    Reply

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