Tuesday, February 23, 2010

people I'm totally judging but trying to pretend not to judge

1. Scene: At the grocery store, trying to manage one of those massive carts with the child-friendly automobiles attached to the front of them. Do you know which ones I'm talking about? They are like 15 feet long and difficult to maneuver, but the kids love them with a burning passion.

My cart was particularly loaded up with groceries and I am trying to wrestle it through the aisles. Anyway, I ended up ACCIDENTALLY bumping into the back of this elderly woman's leg as I'm trying to get into the cashier aisle. But seriously, it was a GENTLE BUMP. Regardless, I was MORTIFIED and apologized approximately 17 times (not exaggerating), and she huffed and puffed and REFUSED TO LOOK AT ME OR ACCEPT MY APOLOGY. It was to the point that I actually gave her a minute, and then again walked around the cart to try to touch her arm and apologize again, sincerely, and she turned her back to me. And then when I went around to her other side, she turned her back to me again. And then did it a third time and she kept turning her head to avoid making eye contact. I had no idea what to do because I felt super guilty, but at the same time, I was pretty pissed because HELLO! It was an accident! I'm saying sorry and being sincere about it and you are being so rude! I actually switched to the aisle next to hers where she would have to look at me and kept watching her and she spent the majority of time paying with her back partially to the cashier just so she wouldn't have to acknowledge me. Wow.

2. Scene: At a playdate sponsored by our town's mother's group.

I'm chatting with a woman in our new neighborhood, and discovering all these things we have in common. Ages of kids, home towns, backgrounds, and I'm getting excited that we can hang out! Have playdates! New friends! Anyway, at one point I comment on how much hair her daughter has, because seriously, she has as much hair as me and she is only a couple of months older than Josie (who has NO HAIR). The mom starts saying that her daughter was born with this much hair, and she has to do it every day, and then she says, "Yes, she sleeps with hot rollers every night." I was totally confused at this point, because, um, what? I thought maybe she was referring to herself and I misunderstood, but further conversation confirmed that yes, it is indeed the 17 month old who sleeps with hot rollers every night. All night long. The explanation is because "her hair is too flat and limp and needs shape." Oh, okay.

3. Scene: Playdate at a girlfriend's house.

I have this girlfriend (whom I generally love) and she often makes comments about how her hair is sooooo straight and lacks body and how she can't do anything with it. Often in these same conversations, she will sort of indirectly criticize my hair, but in this strange way where I'm often left wondering if she is trying to compliment me and it is coming off badly, or whether she really is criticizing it. The thing is, I don't have many complaints about my hair (except for horrible haircuts, of which I've had a few). It is easy to care for, generally does what I want it to, and I think it is fairly nice. I wouldn't trade my hair with too many people, let's put it that way.

So the other day, she is again commenting on her hair and how it is so straight and so she doesn't bother to do anything with it and doesn't even dry it or anything, it always looks like this (and by the way, her hair always looks perfect, not too dissimilar from Jennifer Aniston, for example). A few minutes later, she offers to show me her something in her bedroom and we run upstairs and I happen to peek into her master bath and see, sitting on the counter, HER HAIR DRYER AND STRAIGHT IRON PLUGGED IN AND SEVERAL PRODUCTS lying out on the counter. Why? Why would you voluntarily lie about this?

p.s.- I'm loving the idea of this positive reinforcement chart thing. I keep throwing around the idea, but couldn't figure out how to put it into action. I'm a concrete person and I kept wondering how many stars/stickers, how many opportunities should I offer, how do I decide what to reward him for, etc. This is my type-a personality shining through, huh?

p.p.s.- I actually laughed about the idea of Gabe being out of control. He is not out of control, but he is three and very active and testing. I mentioned to his teachers and a couple of friends my complaints and they all laughed because he is exceedingly easy and compliant the vast majority of the time. But when he is a three year old, phew, he likes to shine in his misbehavior. We had his parent-teacher conference this morning and they said he is fabulous. Shocking to me, but whatever. I'll take good news when I can get it.


Summer said...

OMG, those car carts are so hard to maneuver! Anyone who has ever pushed one will know how impossible they are to steer. The only thing that's worse is when the store has those teeny weeny carts that a toddler can push, because then you get to go through the store apologizing to the thousands of people your child has rammed his cart into.

I don't get lying about how easy your hair is to manage. Is that the hair equivalent of the girl who starves herself skinny but always orders a cheeseburger when she goes out with her girlfriends?

Stacy said...

Big Hugs.

First lady was rude. the second lady was crazy! I cannot imagine torturing a baby like that. The third, well i think honestly she is very insecure and fishing for compliments.

I did sticker reward charts with my DS in school at one point. I agree they can work.

We didn't get over detailed with it.
We taped a piece of paper on his bedroom door. Each day that he was good at school and did his work, he got a sticker. When he hit forty, he got this big transformers thing he wanted!

You could simplify it for Gabe and say he has opportunity to earn one sticker a day, or three or whatever. You can break day into 3 parts or such. and then pick a reward day.
x number of good stickers means you get a sucker, or hot wheel.
xx number means you get a new book.
xxx means you get to pick something to do ie park/zoo/movie

those are just some examples but don't over think it and make it too complicated for either of you.


liz said...

Sticker charts (or prize jars - also good), howsabout he gets a sticker for getting through a day without a time out or for being cooperative?

Chatty Cricket said...

Holy CRAP. I wonder how the mother with the rollers would have handled Lady's baby mullet? That child is headed for Toddlers & Tiaras, isn't she.

And can I tell you something? My SISTER used to curl her hair with a curling iron and then INSIST that it just "looked like that" and that she wasn't "trying to look fancy it's just that her hair has this curl that always makes it look like she took so much time doing it."

And she would make me back up her story. Which I did, because whatever. But she was also SIXTEEN and teenagers do stupid things that make no sense. Your friend? Is KILLING ME!!