Tuesday, January 26, 2010

What I Learned in the Boys' Locker Room

Somewhere along the line, I left behind the Teddy Bear Relay races and preschool craft parties. Now when I volunteer at school, I do things like walk the kids to the pool for swimming and supervise the locker room as they change in and out of their swimsuits.

Have I mentioned that my sons' class is all boys? Our school separates the boys and girls in class until the fifth grade. I believe it is a leftover tradition from the year when the original boys' academy merged with the girls' day school.

(Don't worry for Tuna Boy, though. Girls still have crushes on him.)

I have learned a great deal about boys volunteering in this way.

Mostly I've learned that I know nothing about boys.


Would you believe that a handful of them go commando every day? Did you know that their private parts (and whether or not someone has hit them in their private parts) are their favorite topics of discussion? Did you know that it is really, really important to be the first one out of the locker room and the first one in line? Did you know that "cutting" is the ultimate evil?

And did you know that just one kid can get the others all riled up singing "Pants on the Ground" and make the entire class late for lunch?

I didn't know any of this. My son never talks about his private parts, unless he's having a real issue. He'll never be first in line because he's too damn slow (and doesn't care anyway). And he hasn't the slightest clue what this whole "Pants on the Ground" thing is about.

He does go commando sometimes, though. But only because he's too lazy to find clean underwear and too fastidious to wear dirty underwear.

I guess I should count my blessings.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Flat is Best

My son turned eight last month.


I have a ten-year-old and an eight-year-old. I'm not quite sure how that happened. (Yet, 36 still sounds so young to me. I feel young, at least.)

I am finally starting to see my son as a boy, as opposed to a little boy. He is, very suddenly, a boy. I've sort of been waiting for it to happen--the change in my perception, I mean. I've been watching him grow taller and listening to his speech finally mature.

And I've been really hearing what he is saying. He is so damn funny. He's always had a sophisticated sense of humor for his age. Now I wonder if he really will become an actor or performer of some kind. He just has the best delivery.

His world has become very boy-centric lately. He's old enough now that his sports teams are made up of all boys. And his class at school is all boys.

There are still girls who like him though. He has always been popular with girls. I think it is because he's nice but not wimpy. And he makes them laugh. (Isn't that every girl's dream man?) His big, beautiful eyes might have something to do with it too. (After all, those same eyes helped me fall for his father.)

But he's thinking that he might not get married. Girls, in his opinion, are too much work. They like stuff like hair, clothes, Kids' Bop and Bumpits.

My son hates Bumpits with a passion. They represent all that is evil and wrong with the world. He implores his sister and I to never use Bumpits. I'm not sure he'd love me anymore if I did.

You know, he is the first person to tell me, his sister, grandmother or teachers that we look pretty. But he thinks "flat" hair is prettiest.

In fact, he finally decided, after much deliberation, that he might marry a girl, if she were nice and fun.

And didn't wear Bumpits.

This pleases me immensely. I think I might have a chance at having a daughter-in-law I can stand after all.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Sticking with the Bon Bons

I got the job.

I turned them down.

Don't hate me because I'm beautiful.

Or, well, you know...not so much beautiful as spoiled.

The whole experience really put things into perspective for me. My husband and I talked some big stuff out and made choices that are really the best for everyone. Including me.

As my husband put it, "We don't need the money so you should only do something you really want to do. As much as I complain about my job, and as much as it totally sucks sometimes, I love it. It is my calling. What's your calling, honey?"

I only have one simple answer to that.


So, I'm happy and I feel like celebrating. I feel very liberated. Except, I really think I pissed off the girl who interviewed me and offered me the job. It was a very awkward conversation.

But it's done and over, and I remain free. Free to be at the kids' school for two meetings this week and every day for two weeks to help with swimming and for the Greek festival next week and the concert the week after that...

And you see where I'm going with this.

I have to say, I love my damn life. And my future as a Lady Who Lunches is secure. Anyone want to meet me for martinis and bon bons?

Thursday, January 07, 2010

Interview with Generation Y

Once I had an interview for a marketing internship position that didn't really exist. My professor got me in the door by insisting to the marketing director (a woman he barely knew) that I was the best marketing writer she'd ever see and she'd be crazy not to interview me.

No pressure though.

So I walked in, nervous but confident. She didn't even shake my hand. She looked up at me, narrowed her eyes, tossed a legal pad at me and said, "So I hear you can write. So write something." And left me alone.

Today was like that.

I'm not sure what I was expecting but it has been a long time since I had an interview. I didn't expect to be asked so many blind, "What are your strengths and weaknesses?" or, "Where do you see yourself in five years?" type questions.

The majority of interviews I've had, especially for jobs I actually got, mostly consisted of the interviewers trying to sell me on their organizations.

I think I did okay. But they surprised me at the end. They had a computer test for me to complete. I had to do a Word letter, an Excel spreadsheet, a Mail merge and a Word table all on a version of Office that probably came out back when I was working in the corporate world many moons ago. (Seriously. Was there an Office '95 version?)

It was much more of a corporate cubicle farm than I expected. And my potential boss is about six months pregnant. They want me to fit 20 hours a week between 9 and 5.

I'd be making about $300 a week which hardly seems worth it. But my biggest problem would be the summer schedule. The kids' school day camp would cost me about $500 a week. I'd be in the red.

I have a lot to think about. I guess if nothing else, this was a good chance to dress up and go speak to some adults (albeit adults much younger than me) in a professional manner. If I get the offer, at least I know I still have the ability to rock out a job interview.

And if not, well, then I'm off the damn hook.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

I Told Myself So

Guess who has a job interview on Thursday.

Fuckity, fuck, fuck, fuck.

I don't have anything to wear!

I haven't had a boss or a dress code since the 90's!

I don't even know if I want to do this!

My husband thinks I'm nervous because I don't see that I'm perfect for the job and that they'd be lucky to have me. He mistakes me for someone without a huge ego.

My fear isn't that they won't like me. My fear is that they will! And then I'm really going to have to make a decision about what I want.