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Thursday, July 7, 2011

On Having a Daughter OR Don't Stare Luridly at My Child OR I Might Be Oversensitive On This Issue

So anyone who knows me or reads my blog knows I have a 7 year old daughter.  Her name is Cressy and she's a lot of fun.  See the picture below for uncontroversial proof.  This would go down in a trial, see.

Could be a vampire.  Could be a walrus.
Could be playing with her food
at Micky D's.
Sometimes she's a big pain in the patootie (and I'm an angel, hahaha) but mostly she's not.  Her biggest issues now are how fast is the beach vacation coming and whether or not she can get other kids to play with her.  As a matter of fact, she goes right up to strange kids that she's only seen for two seconds and jumps right in.  (She's got a little kid radar.  A kidar.  She really does.  She can locate any kid of the correct age within a one mile circumference.  Or maybe she's like a shark and smells blood from two miles away.  Either one.)  ("Will you play with me?"  "I don't know you."  "It's okay, we'll get to know each other while we play.")  So this works for her about fifty or sixty percent of the time.  Impressively, she doesn't give up easily.  That's called fortitude.  I think that's a good trait.

I'm trying to picture this working for an adult and all I can think of is the guy who wanted to go eat chicken wings with me.  (See 'The Strange Attack of the Fifty Foot Tall Mr. Chickenwings OR How I Was Hit On While in Walmart' from February 2011.)  So was that the way he learned to socialize?  If you throw out enough lines, something will bite?  (Uh-oh, for some reason I'm resorting to fishing/fish analogies.  Must be because there was just a fishing contest at our club.  There's a big carp in the pond that everyone wants to catch and his name is Big Bubba.  (Incidentally, that's a coinkydink.  I named my character, Bubba, YEARS AND YEARS ago.)  I'm rooting for the carp.  I wanted him to leap out of the pond, jam a hook through the kids' lips and say, "See how you like that, mutha!")

Anyway, the problem with that line is that while it's cute coming from a 7 year old, it's desperate coming from a forty-something year old man at Walmart.  Or any other Mart for that matter.  ("Hey, you want to play with me?  I've got chicken wings."  Seriously, go read the blog mentioned above.  It's still funny.  Somewhere there's a very lonely man with a clam shell full of chicken wings looking for the perfect Fat Woman to hook up with.)  (See, hook?  I didn't mean to make a fishing pun, but I did.)
Okay, back to the point of the blog before I get seriously distracted.  (Look, a plane, a flying tomato, a way of turning steam into natural energy to save the masses from annihilation.  See, my mind just wanders aimlessly.)
What does this have to do with the point of the blog?
I do not know, but it's funny, so just go with it.
Ah, yes.  The last two weeks of school and my daughter got off the bus one day.  She said, "A boy wants to give me a diamond."  One might imagine the reactions that I have to such a statement.  (And God forbid, I should tell HIM, the man to whom I've been married and the father of the 7 year old, because he will mention shovels, shallow graves, and whupass all in the same sentence.)  But back to my reaction: 1) I want to climb on the bus, grab the boy by his shirt and tell him that my daughter is off limits.  2) I want to say, "Does it come with a diamond grading certification?" 3) I want to ask my daughter, "Did he ask you to do something for the diamond?" 4) I want to follow the bus to the boy's house and sneak over later to break both of his little playah kneecaps.  5) I want to call in my last favor from Don Georgio so this kid and his entire family, who are undoubtedly culpable, will go sleep with the fishes.  (Dang.  Another fish reference.  Something's wrong with me today.)

But what I really said was, "Sometimes boys say things they don't mean."

Cressy's response, "Oh, he's giving me a diamond.  He said so."

My reaction to that, "I just don't want you to be disappointed in case he doesn't do what he says.  Sometimes people lie."  (I didn't say, "Sometimes boys lie," but I could have.  I restrained myself.  Really I did.)

Cressy was adamant, and she doesn't even know the meaning of that word.  "He'll give it to me."

So the next day when she got off the bus, she said, "The boy didn't give me a diamond.  You were right, Mommy."  And although she was miffed with the boy for not living up to his declaration, she was not entirely upset.

Me: "I'm sorry, baby.  Sometimes it's just the way people are."

But two days later, she skipped off the bus and triumphantly presented me with a small, iridescent, plastic bead.  "That boy gave me a diamond, after all, Mommy."  There was a smug note of victory in her voice.  ("Yeah, Mommy, a boy gave me a diamond.  What did you get?  Huh, Mommy?")

Of course, I was tempted to say that the small, iridescent, plastic bead wasn't really a diamond, but I didn't.  She had her moment of conquest over the male species and who was I to take it away from her?  Besides I was more concerned about other things.  "This boy who gave you a diamond didn't want you to do anything for him, did he?"

Cressy, putting her small, iridescent, plastic bead to the sunlight so that she could better observe the shine and sparkle of it: "No."

Me: "Like, he didn't want you to kiss him?"  (I mean, how much can happen in a school bus?  Maybe I shouldn't ask that.  I'm not cut out for some of this mommy stuff.  She's not even a freaking teenager yet.  I'm starting to see the appeal of chastity belts.)

Cressy, turning the small, iridescent, plastic bead left and right in the light: "Yucky, Mommy.  I would never kiss a boy."  (Well, that's telling me.  I wonder if I can get that in writing.  Maybe notarized officially and all that.  At least until she's...oh...thirty-five.)

Me: "So is this boy in your class?"

Cressy: "No, he's an older boy."

Me (WARNING!  WARNING!  WARNING!  Ah-oog-AHH! (That's the submarine sound that they make when they're getting blitzed by the Germans or Japanese in WWII) Mommy is having a...moment.): "How much older?"

Cressy, who was in first grade at the time of the alleged 'diamond' incident: "Oh, he's a fourth grader."

Me, quickly doing the math in my head.  ('Hmm.  She's seven.  So that makes him ten. I need to rethink my stance on asking for that final favor from Don Georgio, because this little older SOB is slobbering over my daughter.')  Finally, I said: "Okay, it's probably better if you don't take things from strangers."

Cressy, snatching her small, iridescent, plastic bead out of the light, and clutching it tightly in her hand, as if I was about to take it away from her: "Okay."  But she wasn't happy with me.

But heyheyhey, I had officially set the precedent and that had been years before.  When Cressy was a cute little baby and an adorable little toddler, people would fall over backwards to give her things.  ("OH, how precious.  Have a balloon."  "OH MY GOSH, she's a little button.  Have a little toy."  "OH, isn't she absolutely cutsy-wootsy-mootsy.  Here's a little lollipop for her."  And yes, someone actually once said the phrase, 'cutsy-wootsy-mootsy' in reference to my daughter.  I don't have to make that up.)  So if it was okay then, what's wrong with it now?

Cressy looked at me expectantly, protecting her small, iridescent plastic bead in her hand as if I was a ravaging Mongol Horde charging over the steppes intent on pillaging and other stuff.  I said lamely, "It's just that sometimes people expect things back when they give stuff.  And you don't have to do anything for anyone." (Except Mommy and Daddy and the IRS and maybe Santa Claus, but not the smelly Santa from the mall, only the real one, and where the hell am I going with this?  I do not know.)

Okay, that wasn't lame, it was well and truly, HORRIBLY LAME!!!!!

I never saw that one coming.  When I first discovered I was going to have a daughter and started blaring the news loudly, no one ever told me, "OMG, wait until strange boys start 'giving' her things.  You're gonna be sooorrrrrrreeeeeee."

So when we got home, Cressy made the small, iridescent, plastic bead into a necklace and wore it for approximately 24 hours.  Then it disappeared into a drawer and she hasn't brought it up since.  Go figure.

And I think I have a strange compulsion to go eat at Long John Silver's.  Something fishy, I expect.


Cubop1 said...

See, it all worked out OK. Better you should ask Don Giorgio to have Carmine and Nunzio visit your neighbor. They can have a conversation that involves baseball bats.

Just a suggestion.

Carwoo said...

Hey Rob, unfortunately my only outlet is really blogging. But imagination does wonders for my sense of humor.

Cubop1 said...

What? Don Giorgio isn't real? I'm crushed!

Sara said...

It seems your daughter has "the gift" 9-year-old (well, she's be 10 on 10/10) is that way. She's had a "boyfriend" - the same one - since kindergarten. His parents let him buy her bday, Christmas, Valentine's Day presents. It horrifies me on so many levels. I've tried to reason with her, with them...he's a sweet kid but my daughter totally takes him for granted! Isn't that horrible to admit? This year is the first year she's been considerate of this kid, wanting to return presents and asking him how his day is or mentioning him in conversations. I'm just amazed that parents let their children - encourage it even - nurture those sorts of relationships. I'll never forget in second grade the little boy was sick on Valentine's Day and the boy's MOTHER brought my daughter her stuffed animal and blanket as a gift to school since the boy wasn't there. They haven't even been in the same class except once since kindergarten - just go to the same small town school....don't even live in the same town. Anyway - see, now I'm ranting! LOL But such is the curse of having girls. I have a son as well. A nice, tame Virgo who is so rational and dear to me....I'm waiting for him to grow a little more so he can successfully fend off/deter his sister's suitors. She certainly isn't going to save herself! LOL

Carwoo said...

Well, there's no official 'boyfriends' yet. But my daughter and her bbf have talked about who they're going to marry. I don't think the boys are aware of the arrangement. Poor little tykes.