July 14, 2005

Life with Teenagers

Another hot, humid week. I get tired of lying on the floor complaining about heat and try to take some action to do something with my kids. But alas! My fourteen-year-old, that is, the infamous Shaggy Hair Boy, has little interest in bonding with his mother.


Me: Hey, let's go to the beach at Pretty Colour Lake and take a swim.
Shaggy Hair: No, that would be boring.
Me: Boring? You used to beg me to go swimming! You love Pretty Colour Lake.
Shaggy Hair: It's too hot. I don't feel like going.
Me: You want to just stay home and talk on the telephone?
Shaggy Hair: Yes.


Me: Hey, it's another hot humid day. Let's not just lie on the floor and whine. Let's go to the beach at Pretty Colour Lake and go swimming. Wouldn't that be fun?
Shaggy Hair: No, that would be boring. Just. Plain. Boring.
Me: You don't feel like swimming in this heat?
Shaggy Hair: No. Not at all.


Shaggy Hair: Hey, Mom, have you seen my bathing suit? Pretty-Girl-With-Great-Singing-Voice-Who-Has-a-Big-Crush-on-Shaggy-Hair just called. Her Mom is taking us to the beach at Pretty Colour Lake.
Me: What? I thought that the beach was boring. Just. Plain. Boring.
Shaggy Hair: Where is the sunscreen?
Me: I've been trying to get you to go to the beach ALL WEEK.
Shaggy Hair: Can you put sunscreen on my back? PrettySingingCrushGirl will be here any moment.
Me: I wanted to go to the beach. I've been wanting to go all week.
Shaggy Hair: Well, now you can't.
Me: I can't? Even in a separate car?
Shaggy Hair: No. That would be following me around. That. Is. Not. Allowed.

Me: What? How unfair is that?
Boy in Black: He's right, Mom.
FilmGuy: He's got a point.
Daughter: Just accept it.
Me: Fine.

Minutes Later

Me: Hey, With-a-Why, want to go spray the hose on ourselves or something?
With-a-Why: No.
Me: Why not?
With-a-Why: That would be boring.


liz said...

Leave them all home alone and go to the beach yourself. Without. Them.

That'll show 'em!

Mr. Sniffly said...

What liz said!

Running2Ks said...

Now if their dates could just be good influences in the school year, you'd hear great stuff like "Mom, where is my library card? Cute girl needs a study partner!"

Cool off!--from a fellow temperaturely-challenged Mommy who has no a/c in the house older than ketchup.

Rob Helpy-Chalk said...

I want to express sympathy for your inability to spend time with your kid, but really I'm just all excited for him because he went to the beach with a pretty girl who can sing and has a crush on him.

I can hear all the thoughts in his head: will she wear a bikini? Will I embarrass myself by saying something stupid? Will my mom embarrass me by showing up? Remember to make eye contact. God I hope my mom doesn't show up.

Mona Buonanotte said...

Perhaps Shaggy Hair could invite Pretty Girl back to YOUR house for, oh, ice-cream, sprinklers, movie, late-night swim?

Uh-oh, the girlish Mona is remembering her teen years doing above activities, and the momish Mona is saying "NO! Bad Idea!"

Songbird said...

It's a hard age for the mother.

PPB said...

I tell you, life is too short to wait for teenagers. Run through the sprinklers without them.

Friday Mom said...

Ah, it's the heat. They aren't thinking clearly. Who doesn't want to go to the beach????

I'll go to the beach with you. Can we go skinny dipping?

jo(e) said...

Rob: Yeah, I tease him about his sudden desire to go to the beach but really I am happy with him that he's got friends to hang out with -- and I know how important it is to him that girls get crushes on him.

I used to worry that my sons would get labelled as nerds because they are all super smart, but apparently such things as long hair, musical talent, snowboarding skills, and an outgoing personality can overcome that stereotype.

Friday Mom: Skinny dipping? Sure. I know the perfect spot. Just so long as we go before dusk, which is when the mosquitos emerge.

Songbird said...

jo(e), it seems to matter *which* instrument you can play. #2 Son, also 14, informs me that no matter how good you are at clarinet (and he is really, really good), it does not help with girls one single bit. (Or maybe he should just grow his hair longer...)

jo(e) said...

Songbird: Oh, yeah, you are right about that. All my kids play the piano but classical piano is not terribly cool. So they've branched out to other cooler instruments: drums, guitar, bass, saxophone.

And which band you join matters too. Concert band and marching band -- not cool enough. Jazz band, definitely cool. Garage band: the coolest.

Of course, self-confidence seems to be the biggest factor and for some reason that is something my family has always had a big supply of.

bitchphd said...

I'm with everyone else. Go to the beach by yourself--and I know how bittersweet that is, but try to remember back when they were PK's age and you would have given ANYTHING for time alone and enjoy it on my behalf :)

And it's very sweet that Shaggy has a girl friend (two words, note) to go to the beach with.

What a lovely post this is. I'm charmed, and saddened at the same time.

Phantom Scribbler said...

Leave the kids behind and come visit your bloggy friends, jo(e). We'll go to the beach with you. We'll even loan you some spare kids.

Rob Helpy-Chalk said...

Dr. B:

Are you sure she's not a girlfren:

"That's a g-i-r-l-f-r-e-n"

academic coach said...

Ahhh, thank you for frightening me instructively -- since my brood of four ranges from 4 to 10 and you raise the looming spector of teendom.
Won't be long before they're pushing me away rather than begging me to jump in with them. I'll try to remember this post tomorrow when they ask me to swim with them.

Lisa V said...

Oh this is my life. I am thankful for the 11, 7 and 3 year olds who still don't think I am loser. One day they will be teenagers just like Daughter #1, who walks 10 paces behind me in public.

Tell Shaggy he is lucky. I work at Daughter #1's school, so I am with her everyday. I am threatening to go to college with her.

Suzanne said...

I think about such scenarios every time I feel slightly resentful of all the attention my very young kids need from me. Some day, I know they will prefer someone else's company to mine.

RussianViolets said...

Oh, poor Jo(e).