Wednesday, June 18, 2008

And As WonderMom's Alter Ego, I Feel It Behooves Me to Use My Limited and Delayed Wit for Good, Not Evil.

First things first: Another successful day at the old swimmin' hole, y'all. I sat riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight on the edge of the concession area (I don't know if it even still qualified as the concession area, to be honest) where I was as close to Bean as I could possibly be withOUT actually being on the pool deck. I could see that little curly head and those yummy brown shoulders bobbin' away the whole time and I'd staked out my position before Bean got in the water and showed her exactly where I'd be and made sure she was comfortable with that distance. She looked over once after her lesson started and that was that. The one issue I have with that location is just that if I REALLY needed to get to her on the double, I'd be forced to hurdle a rather wide and bee-ridden hedge. In my little kitten heeled sandals. Wearing my gigantic belly. Which would be entertaining for everyone around me, to say the least. But we'll jump that hedge when we come to it.

The crying children in Bean's class are MULTIPLYIN'. Whereas the first day it was only B and another boy who were upset, now there are a total of FOUR cryers, out of 8 or 9 kids. Another one starts in every day and so far none of them have gotten better over consecutive days and they don't stop crying - they cry the WHOLE lesson. One of the cryer's mothers stopped me today and I chatted with her for a bit. She was DIS-TRAWT, y'all. And I don't blame her. I listened to her for a bit - she said her daughter'd never really had any similar issues before (yay for her!) so she really didn't know what to do. Was leaving her the right thing? I told her she knew her daughter better than anyone and I wouldn't dare tell her what to do, and then explained briefly how Bean and I had handled OUR own little sitchee-ation and what had come of it. And do you know she marched herself right back to that pool and got her little girl out of that water and they sat together poolside for awhile. At the end of the lesson, the daughter left Mom's lap and headed out to help the teachers "hide" the buried treasure for the other kids.

Gloat gloat. I've been singin' the Wonderpets theme song to myself the whole rest of the morning:

WonderMom WonderMom
I'm on my way,
To help the cryin' babies
And save the daaaaaaaay.
My parenting approach is totally outta style
But we can work to-gether to make your kid smile
Goooooo WonderMom, YAY!

I am totally Tuck the Turtle, by the way.


And now! I'm back to the Reader Mailbag, answering my sweet pal Megan's (SortaCrunchy) questions. (She asked me another one too but I'm saving it for later.)

I've been enjoying reading your thoughts here for a long time, and it's hard to believe it hasn't even been a year yet since we "met." What got me addicted to FriedOkra from the start is your charming blend of humor and insight. Do you think you are funny in "real life" (offline)? Do people comment on your sense of humor?

OHMYGRANNY. In a word: Er... NOPE.

Isn't THAT disappointing? I hope y'all can still like me, knowing that.

You know, I HAVE been called insightful before, although admittedly mostly by my own mother. (She's my mom, you know, she's required to find SOMETHING about me to like, right?) She thinks I'm funny, too, but usually when I'm not even tryin' to be funny. And she'll say, "Oh Megan, you are so funny." And I'll say, "Wha-a-a-t? What's funny about that?"

I think in person I tend to come across as earnest and passionate. Probably because as a naturally shy person, I'm inclined to pour my limited vocal energies into imparting information: Get in, make your point, get out. When I write, I have time to think about nuance and timing and delivery. In conversation, I just want to get said what I need to say and clam up again before I make a dork of myself.

(I am certain that last statement in particular will cause both of Al's eyebrows to make full contact with his hairline. And that's no small distance for them to travel, either. I don't mean to YOU, honey. With you I am so comfortable that I can just amble along conversationally for hours on end with no clear direction and see where I wind up. Yes, yes, I know. You are so LUCKY!)

Oh, there are RARE occasions, I suppose, when I get in JUST the right mood, that I can be funny in person. But mostly I am just too slow a thinker for the LIVE ACTION WIT. When I'm hanging out with my girls I'm generally at least 5 minutes behind everybody else. We'll be gabbing along and the whole tableful of women will erupt in great whooping laughter. And about time they're all hiccuping and wiping away tears and sighing post-giggle sighs, I'll chime in with my famous, "Wha-a-a-at?! Whaddid I miss?" And somebody has to break it down for the dumb old broad.

See? Not only am I not funny myself, I can't even keep up with other people's funny. Pathetic.

Even Al doesn't find me all that funny, even though with him as a partner, I think I come up with some good material. I bet I could count the number of times I've REALLY made him laugh on one handful of fingers, y'all. He only rarely laughs out loud at my blog, though he SAYS it's funny, mostly in response to my lamenting, dejectedly, after he's read a post with a completely straight face, "You diddn laugh!"

Frankly I think he enjoys his position in our family as the RFP - the Resident Funny Person. Which he is. I don't even bother to covet that spot, because I get to laugh allatime, until I can't breathe, think or control my bladder. And I think anyone who knows me at all will tell you that I LURV LURV LURV TO LAUGH. I will laugh at anything, I will. Loud and long and hyena-like. Because WHEEEEEEE DOGGIES. Nothing makes me giddy like a good long laugh.

Y'all wanna know my deepest, darkest secret about my own sense of humor?

Move in close now. I'll only say this once.

In my natural state, I'm ... snarky.

And I don't like that about myself. Snarkiness (sarcastic, often malicious humor at the expense of other people) isn't a great trait -- it's not in line with my values, nor is it an example I want to set for Bean and Peanut.

(Ohmyland I have allasudden grown so uncomfortable with this legume theme I have going with my kids' nicknames!)

Snarky, no matter how tempting and easy it is for me to employ, is just MEAN in FUNNY'S clothing.

So I reckon I'll just have to keep bloggin', won't I?


  1. I'm trying to be less snarky, too, in real life.

    Love your wonderpet's song!

    I wanna be Ming-Ming. She's just too cute and soft.

    It's an amazing feeling when something from our lives helps others with their problems. You're a hero to that mom!

  2. woo...that leaves me to be Winnie. :)

    glad things went well again today. Send me some good swim lesson dust...I just might need it in a few weeks. :)

  3. I'm so glad Bean is doing so good in her class.

    I think following your parental instincts has paid off for you and now this other mom too!

    Kids have their own time line for warming up to things!!!

    Go WonderMom!

  4. I'm so glad you have come to realize that you handled that swimming situation just right! And I'm glad it's still working.
    Guess what - I have to work on that snarkiness too!

  5. I'm definitely more interesting online than in real life.

    xo ~K

  6. We've been going to swimming lessons this week too. Miss Pink is doing well after a few days of crying, but the little guy (2) is hating every minute. Luckily I am in the water with him. I'm sure that mom really appreciated your help--I know the supportive comments from the other moms keep me from feeling terrible.

  7. I'm kinda snarky in real life, too, but am SO not good at in on the 'puter. I think you'd crack me up- can't wait to meet you someday!


  8. I love this post, because this is just how I am! :) I am SO not funny in real life, but I laugh at everything- and my husband is hilarious! :) So, yeah, we laugh a lot. And then your comment about sarcasm being mean in funny's clothing- that's such a good quote! :) I think I'll use it sometime! :)

  9. Oh I totally feel your pain on the slow thinking thing. It drives me CUH-razy sometimes.

  10. Yes, please keep on blogging.

    And funny thing about the slow thinking. Honey noticed that the longer I blog and try to leave more comments the better I am getting at coming up with snappy, witty comebacks. I think that by reading all those well thought out comments and blog posts I've got a well of material to draw upon.

  11. I am SO glad you blog! I'm kind of shy and snarky in real life too, so if we ever meet, it might be kind of shy and catty.

  12. Contrary to you, I do have people tell me I'm funny, HOWEVER, I truly think if I was Last Comic Standing I'd be booted right off. I'm more of a spontaneous humor/witty person. I'm thinking I'm going to give Stand Up a try for my blog included. I'll let you know!

  13. I am SO snarky, my dad gifted me with the scarcasm gene.
    I think we might could be a lot alike ceptn' I don't write as well. *sigh* I'm very shy & was known as the laughing receptionist at a job once. My problem is that I laugh at everything, even when it's not exactly appropriate. An old friend of mine used to get mad at me for that. He was kind of melencholy & I was always laughing at the wrong things.

  14. I'm a tad snarky too...working on that. Trying to be REAL. :) I don't know if I'm even interesting really thought that one over. Something else to ponder now... :)

  15. I think everyone is a bit snarky. I know I can be.

    Now I have "What's going to work, Team work!" in my head. Wonderful...

    So glad swimming is going well!