The other day I picked up Michael from his after-school “Mad Science” program. A little girl named Mary from Sam’s kindergarten class was left behind as all the parents were picking up their kids except for her.
She looked longingly at us as we all moved away from the doorway down the hall. “Oh – I feel bad for Mary,” I said to Sam as we walked to the car.
“Yeah, well – she has lice.” he said matter-of-factly as he hopped into the back seat.
“Wait, what?” I asked in a panic. I shouldn’t have been surprised since the child looks like her mother hadn’t combed her hair since she was born.
Of course when a kid in the class has lice it’s not long before it starts hopping around to everyone, and I hadn’t received a note from the nurse.
“How do you know?” I demanded.
“She told us on the bus.” Michael answered.
“She just announced on the bus, “I have lice?” She doesn’t even care?” I asked incredulously.
They both shrugged and looked out the window.
Is this the world we live in now? Where children are so immune to their peers being filthy with tangled hair filled with bugs?
My BF that lives in Rhode Island knew what to do. “Oh God – I spend hours in the morning putting gel and hairspray in the kids’ hair, lice don’t like hair products.”
This is where being guidos comes in handy. We have been waking up a little early to be sure that everyone has their hair “did,” but now they help each other to be sure they have enough product in.
While everyone else’s kid in this town looks like they came straight off the set of the Brady Bunch, mine look like they are on their way to go clubbing at Karma.
Even though it’s excessive, I actually prefer it to the way other parents have their boys walking around looking like a Brady child. It wasn’t cute in the 1970’s and it’s definitely not cute now.
I had a crazy week that involved driving home at 2 am in a nor’easter, going to New York twice for work, and hiring babysitters and my husband for the morning “get-ready-for-school duty”, so it was nice to get to the weekend and not have to stress about gelling people’s hair.
Except one problem. Michael came home with a stuffed animal frog.
His homework was to babysit this disgusting bedbugs collector
I find stuffed animals to be vile creatures filled with dust and dead skin cells. I throw out as many as I can from the kids’ closets when they aren’t paying attention. At fairs, they are not allowed to play any games that might win them a huge stuffed animal filled with styrofoam pellets. The absolute bane of my existence is when people line the back of their car windows with little stuffed animals.
So imagine my alarm when I found out we were babysitting “Francisco” the stuffed frog.
I wanted to vomit when I came home and found it on the kitchen table. His frog fur was matted and thick, and he looked like he had been around for a very long time.
“What the fuck is this?” I yelled at Mr. Gaga as I drop-kicked the frog across the room, (which is my immediate reaction to dirty stuffed animals.)
“No Mom!!” Michael yelled as he retrieved the injured frog from the corner of the room. “This is my class frog!” he explained. He was thrilled to tell me the news that he was in charge of entertaining the frog for the weekend and that he would have to take pictures and share with his class on Monday all of their adventures.
Friday night after a long week of working crazy hours, I promised the kids we could have movie night. I actually vomited in my mouth when I turned to look at Michael and saw this.
When Michael went to sleep, I had to steal the filthy animal and take care of business. By the end of the weekend we had a couple of pictures and Michael wrote a nice story about what he did with the frog. I had to “help him remember” though. A few times he said “Wait, was Francisco with me on the swings?” or “Was Francisco with me at Grandma’s party?”
I assured him Francisco was by his side all weekend….
In fact, he spent a great deal of time doing what I wanted him to do.
One time Michael and Sam were looking frantically for the frog to play with.
I had to quickly and discreetly release him…..
Thank goodness the frog leaves tomorrow.
Let’s just hope he doesn’t leave any “friends” behind.
SO I HATE STUFFED ANIMALS….DOESN’T EVERYBODY???