Out the Gate

(scene opens in eye doctor lobby, a khalasar of children run out the door to the car)

Doctor: So, here’s the prescription for Beta. (hands over paper) I’ll see him in a year, the rest in two. (turns to desk nurse) Can she get three dilation sunglasses? (back to Carrot, with sympathy) Try to have a good summer.
Me: (brave smile) I’ll do my best. Thanks, Doc.

(doctor exits)

Me: (eyes Desk Nurse) Uh…I have four kids. Is there any possible way I could get a fourth set to prevent any fighting on the drive home?
Older Desk Nurse: (starts laughing)
Younger Desk Nurse: Sure thing. (opens up a fourth set)
Me: I appreciate it. Maybe I could come back once a week and sit in your exam room for twenty minutes? I could bring snacks.

(both desk nurses laugh)

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My Compliments

(scene opens in a Party City, behind the counter in a fabulous array of balloons)

Me: (steps up to counter and places down items, still staring at the balloons)
Cashier: (in a voice deeper than Barry White and richer than James Earl Jones) Did you find everything you need?
Me: Oh, yes. (eyes still on balloons) Thank you. You have a very beautiful voice.
Cashier: (pleased rumble) Thank you.
Me: (realized what she just did, stares up at him) Oh my gosh. Was that inappropriate? I’m sorry.
Cashier: (counting change) No, you’re fine.
Me: Really? (panicked) I don’t want to create an unsafe working environment.
Cashier: (relaxes further, smile wider) Here’s your change. You have a beautiful day now.
Me: Thank you. You too, sir.

(scene cuts to sidewalk, Carrot squinting up at the sky)

Me: Well, there’s another store I won’t be able to go to for the rest of the year.

Not Winning

(scene opens at cluttered dining room table)

Me: (cheerful) Something new for dinner tonight!
Beta: (preens)
Me: Mr. Picky Eater wanted to try something new for pasta night, so we’re having ALFREDO! (puts down bowls of noodles and sauce)
Beta: (shovels it in)
Alpha: (takes one bite gags, puts hands over mouth) Sorry.
Gamma: (watches brother, slowly puts down fork) I’m not hungry.
Delta: (taking cues from the herd) Not hungry, mama.
Me: …you’re serious? It’s just fancy mac’n’cheese!
Gamma: (slinks away from table) I’m going to get ready for Scouts.
Delta: I go too! (takes off)
Alpha: (still at table with hands over mouth) I’m sorry but…just…no.
Beta: (finishes his bowl, grabs Gamma’s, keeps eating)
Me: (stunned) I cannot believe this.
Beta: (mouth full) Right? It’s even better with chicken.

Radio. Edit.

(scene opens in mini van, Kids Music playing on radio)

Radio: (kicks new song intro)
Me: (ears prick up) Uh, turn off the radio.
Husband: (driving) What?
Gamma: OH YEAH!
Me: Damnit, turn it off! (lunges for phone in holder, fumbles to the floor)
Husband: (confused) What song is it?
Me: How do you not know this song! (wrestles with seatbelt to hunt for phone)
Gamma: I LOVE THIS SONG!
Radio: TURN DOWN FOR WHAT!
Husband: Jebuz! (slaps off radio)
Me: (comes up with phone in hand)
Gamma: BRING BACK THE MUSIC!
Husband: How did you recognize that song? I thought we were playing kids Pandora.
Me: How did you not recognize that song? And we are? (close upon phone shows Kids Rock! Radio)
Gamma: I NEED THE MUSIC!

(Husband and Carrot exchange looks)

Husband: (cautiously turns the radio back on)
Radio: TURN DOWN FOR WHAT! (followed by lengthy instrumental)
Gamma: OH YEAH! TURN DOWN FOR WHAT!

(another exchange of looks)

Husband: We might be really bad parents.
Me: This is the strangest yet most wholesome radio edit ever.

Bonus to Awarness

(scene opens in basement, knee deep in baskets of folded laundry, She-Ra on tv)

Delta: (laying upside down on couch)
Me: (in bathrobe, hunting for clothing)
Beta: (breathless, pounds downstairs) What’s that noise!
Me: Probably me laughing, this show is ridiculous. Mermista obviously wants to be She-Ra…
Beta: No! It was loud! Like an alarm!
Me: I don’t hear anything. I…(sudden realization) Oh. You’re hearing the tornado sirens. Its the first Tuesday of the month.
Beta: (flailing) When did they start doing that?!
Me: Since forever.
Beta: (more flailing, more panic) This is horrible! What if there was a real tornado! On the first Tuesday! Of the month!
Me: (finding toddler clothes) Never happens. Against the rules.
Beta: (pause) ….really?
Me: No, not really! How have you never heard a siren before?
Beta: (thinks) Not paying attention?
Me: Huh. Imagine.