to school


A rare occurrence today - I overslept. Went right on snoring through the alarm clock beeps. It's been years since I did this, mainly because it's unusual for me to be in a position where oversleeping is a possibility. Viv always gets up first, does some sort of secret preliminary girly things in the bathroom, and then wakes me up around 7:00am whereupon we both choreograph Amy's morning launch toward the school bus. But with Viv off on a business trip I'm left to my own devices, one of which is a clock too quiet, apparently.

I happened to turn over and look at my watch when the big hand slapped me awake. I went into emergency mode, rousing Amy, packing her backpack, pouring cereal, getting her dressed, washed, brushed, etc., all without coffee, all without my glasses on (I've worn glasses for twenty-four years, and I was so out of it this morning that it took 15 minutes for me to remember that I wear glasses). Viv called from Colorado in the middle of the frenzy. Adrenaline reserves are wonderful things.

* * * * * * *

Later, I went for my normal run, did some shopping for Amy's birthday, picked up replacement line for the weed whacker, installed the new line, finalized the guest list for the Chuck E. Cheese party on Saturday and confirmed the number with Mr. Cheese, refilled Amy's prescription medications, and kept an eye out for the Clinton video. I guess I'll have to wait a bit more for it to be released. I also wanted to get to the grocery store today, but didn't get the opportunity.

Amy came home from school, took a half-hour break, and then worked on her homework. Her attention's been wandering lately. The teacher sent home a note about it last week, Viv and I worked out a plan designed to allow more discipline with the homework, we saw some improvement, but today some of the distractedness came back again. Well, she is only about to turn seven-years-old, so I suppose I can cut her some slack, but sometimes when it comes right down to it, it seems like there's just no getting through to her. After some explanations of the instructions on her math assignment, she seemed to get the hang of it. Then, moving onto her spelling, she seemed to grasp the task at hand and I let her go to it alone. I went out to work on the weed whacker. She came out to the backyard a few minutes later. I asked her if she'd finished her homework and she said yes.

"Is it ALL done?" I asked.

"Yes" she replied. I let her play on the rope swing.

When I went into the house a few minutes later I saw that her homework was not finished, called her on it, and she started making excuses. This is what seven-year-old kids do. But then when I asked her to finish it, she flashed an attitude that you'd expect from a fourteen-year-old. Just plain rude behavior. Yeow, from out of left field this came. The combination of the lie, fib, untruth, whatever you want to call it, and the attitude, earned her an afternoon and evening of no TV or videos. I dished out some consequences and stuck with 'em.

She did not like this.

So now I was Evil Daddy From Hell while her Saintly Mother, soon to return, would be hearing about these terrible abuses, "and don't you forget it, Mr. Daddyman" Amy seemed to be saying. At least those were the words that were engraved on each of those little daggers that were coming out of her glare.

And this was the happy child I got to take with me to Back-To-School night.

* * * * * * *

It went okay, actually. She's always been enthusiastic about school, it's very much her realm, and she was delightful to be with this evening.

But then we came home and somehow the old vapors got back into her again. She was tired, she hadn't really eaten much dinner, and, when her mother called again to see how our happy little day had gone, Amy made certain to report that her father was Satan Himself.

* * * * * * *

She's sleeping now. The winding down that always happens at bedtime was welcome peace after this pisser of a day. I read her a story, "Maude and Claude Go Abroad" by Susan Meddaugh, which is a fun story to read aloud, its rhythm and rhyme are a real kick, and in no time she was snoring.

So now, at 10:30pm, I take some time for myself. I lean back in the chair, put my feet on my desk, and start writing the list of what I plan (hahahahahaha) to do tomorrow.

If I hear the alarm clock.


Today's Music:

"My Baby Don't Love Me" -- Everything But The Girl -- THE LANGUAGE OF LIFE


Wisdom of the Day:

"Soap and education are not as sudden as a massacre, but they are more deadly in the long run."

- Mark Twain, ("The Facts Concerning the Recent Resignation," in Sketches New and Old)