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Thursday, February 24, 2011

Red Writing Hood: Seeking

Seeking

I am giving away my time. After all, the world has already determined that it is worth nothing.

I'm not talking about "free time," which  I covet with a white-hot intensity---the phrase is a bit of a misnomer, anyway.

(Creeping out of bed while the sheets are still warm to eek out an hour of alone time? I pay for that. Specifically, in Mary Kay under-eye concealer).

I'm talking about the daily pockets of time which are presently snatched from me. I've decided I would rather give it away than let people take it from me.

Each morning, I buckle in my children. Although they have just eaten a kingly breakfast of yogurt, waffles, fruit, and milk, the Pavlovian response to the seat belt click triggers the cries of "Snack, please, snack please, snack please."

It's less charming than one would think. Particularly since the younger one, the one prone to yelling, "I wanna HIT THAT!" prefers to simply yelp, "NACK! NACK! NACK!"

I don't give them snacks and/or nacks. The two year old weeps. I drive down my one-way dirt road to get the spawn where they need to go. I am thwarted.

My neighbor's truck, roughly the size of a small tank, blocks the only exit off my street. He is talking to another neighbor, probably about the rouge emu recently shot and trussed by a tobacco farmer up north.

I sigh, and tap my horn once. Oldest stops asking about snacks long enough to whine, "We're going to be late. Just drive over the guy."

My neighbor nods and waves, acknowledging my horn,  then takes another drag off his cigarette. I wish I had a rifle to shoot in the air. To better speak his language.

With a turn of the key and an ear-piercing blast of Pantera, my neighbor finally clears a path. Fifteen minutes, stolen.

A further inventory reveals: 

*I lose at least thirty minutes daily searching for microscopic yet crucial Lego pieces.

*When my pediatric dentist tells me that I need to floss my two year old's teeth, I take small pleasure when he bites her moments later. But it doesn't take back the twenty minutes in the waiting room.

*There's nothing I enjoy more than breaking my day into three categories: the moments I place Youngest on the potty so he can cry, the moments he soils the floor with his waste, and the moments I scrub at said waste with Oxy Clean.

* Lest I forget, I spent almost four hours camping out in the lobby of the preschool to secure Youngest's spot. I arrived, blurred eyed and surly, at 6:00 AM. I was sixth on the list. The earliest person had signed in at 5:25 AM. (As I write this the next day, there are still four spots open).

I suppose, if I want to regain control of my time, I could consider returning to work. At least I would earn a salary. After all, there's always a story there. My friend shared with me that she was discussing Mother Theresa with her sophomores. One of them piped up, "Oh, you mean the one on the syrup bottle!"

So, gentle reader, consider taking my time. It's my gift to you. If you don't take it, surely somebody else will. That, I can guarantee. 

Serious seekers only. Don't waste my---oh, who am I kidding?



This is my rant/submission for this week's Red Writing Hood challenge: 


Write a humorous listing for eBay or Craig's List. Talk about the history of the items, why they must go.

40 comments:

Jessica said...

Amazingly written as always and such a neat take on the prompt. I so identify with the potty training, the snack begging and the teeth flossing. If I could take your time and make my day a few hours longer in order to get everything done I would.

singedwingangel said...

Why is it as mothers everyone expects us to pull miracles out of thin air and accomplish the impossible? I so get this time snatcher thing, except add my aging mom to that list along with my whiny needy children who call me cabbie..

Lisa @ Two Bears Farm said...

The teeth flossing made me laugh. Our dentist recommends we brush FOR THEM and floss FOR THEM until they are at least 7 years old. Fabulous.

Well, I hope you get some good bites on your ad. You know, of the type 'masseuse in training, needs back to practice on' that wants your free time ;-)

Ash said...

Hilarious. Not asshat people/futile searches snatching your time, but your take on it.

And seriously, WTH on the click-n-snack? My boys suffer from that affliction as well. Well, you know, we are the ones who truly suffer.

I can offer a paperclip and some bellybutton lint. That buys about 48 hours right?

tulpen said...

This vacation week has had me asking my kids to please trade the time they spend fighting with time spent playing nicely.

They have yet to make the trade.

Ms. Moon said...

Too true- all of it.

Pamela Gold said...

Oh you played this one up well. Very unique approach. This prompt is just out of my reach...

clearness said...

This is awesome and the flossing and biting the dentist....bawawhahah!

Ms.Wasteland said...

You crack me up! I can't wait to meet you in person. :)

tsonodablog said...

That was funny! Wow you do sound like a busy woman (not to take too much of your time reading this but...). I'm glad you get your hour early in the morning to write, though. You, Ash and Erin inspired me when you started that, and it resulted in a closer inspection on how much time I actually waste. So thanks for that, and keep writing! You are awesome.

LBDDiaries said...

This was brilliant. I love your take on time and can't agree with you MORE!! I am going to start looking for those areas people are trying to steal my time. May I borrow your 2 year old? I have some people who need biting.

Joey @ Big Teeth and Clouds said...

I "worked" today and had a whole period (43 minutes) with nothing to do. I just sat there. Do you know when the last time I just sat in a quiet room might have been??? Me either.

I have a feeling this ad will be very successful on Craigslist. More of your time is probably already gone.

only a movie said...

Since teaching is known to be a quite, unassuming, stress-free existence, I'm sure returning to work is looking tempting.

Also, apparently we're overpaid and have insanely inflated benefits.

noisycolorfullively said...

This was my lament today. Exactly. You wrote my life. And I love you for it.

amygrew said...

I am totally with you! Maybe if we swap our stollen time it will even out? Nice post!

angela said...

I think "snack" is one of the dirtiest words a child can learn. I will get, "I don't waaaaaaannnnnttt lunch! I want a snaaaaaaack," without even knowing what lunch may be.

This is such a great take on the prompt. I should bookmark for the times when my husband asks, "so what did you DO all day?"

C.Mom said...

Yes, yes, and yes! Love the biting of the dentist..and as far as going back to work-- as a full time teacher (that is home today with a sick daughter), if nothing else it feels as if we have a teensy bit more control in the classroom to manage our time. Oh wait, no--not so much. :)

whispatory said...

I loved the biting of the dentist. Hilarious.

moveovermarypoppins.com said...

clever and snarky and heartfelt all at the same time!

swoon!

and sadly, so universally true.

Sluiter Nation said...

It's so sad how true this is. I love how how you weave your heart AND your sass into this :)

Elaine A. said...

I'm laughing because "NACK!" is totally a favorite word around here and I just posted about it recently too, actually. Cracks me up.

And also? There is SO much wrong with the Mother Theresa mix up that I'm not even sure where to start... oy.

And I'll take your time, but only if it give me more hrs. in the day (to sleep)... ;)

Home In The Hollow said...

Flossing their teeth, buckling them in, tooting the horn while he talks to the neighbor...I never thought of adding it all up! Very good post...:)JP

Mandyland said...

Oh my God...the LEGOS. I swear I spend HOURS every day looking for the tiny, round, one peg piece that holds the entire 250 piece set together.

*sigh*

Moving on from that...great post!

Jack said...

I know how to find Lego pieces. Walk barefoot in the dark and they'll find you.

Karen Peterson said...

This is funny and so true. Only, in my case, you can substitute the boss for the kids.

Cheryl said...

Wait - has Mother Teresa finally replaced that somewhat controversial Aunt Jemima? It's about time.

Also, yes! to the biting of the dentist.

This was funny, Nancy!

MultitaskMumma said...

So so creatively done!!!
Amazing.

Yippy Momma said...

I will take that time and it to mine in hopes that I'll have some downtime. Here's to hoping I won't need to camp out anyone for school enrollments (but wait... I did that at the YMCA this week to enroll the lil man into swim lessons. Does that count? lol). TRDC

Nichole said...

I like this side of you, Nancy.
This line makes me giggle, "I don't give them snacks and/or nacks."

MrsJenB said...

You know, I first thought of Mrs. Butterworth. Seriously. I need a good night's sleep, evidently.

Great post!

MrsJenB said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Renee said...

I could seriously use those extra minutes.
Cause guess what? I'm empty nested and still am having my time compromised.
Hope I didn't burst any bubbles of hope for the future.

Valerie said...

This was a great post-I loved it! Reading it was definitely a good use of my time:)

The mad woman behind the blog said...

You described my rare day as a SAHM (once in a blue moon)...amazing what we're expected to accomplish in so little time.
And I'm learning from these posts to avoid toys with multiple tiny pieces.

Stephanie said...

I've got the hot wheels curse going on here. This definitely cracked me up.

Jessica Anne said...

Oh, this is exactly my life. I figure if we somehow save up all the wasted time, there would be enough time for a month long vacation. For one. On a remote island beach. With no legos.

The Empress said...

You know what I hear?

That there is never any "free time."

Yup.

Just passing it on.

Stacey said...

I really try hard not to think of all the time stolen from me. I recently had an experience dealing with an attorney over a financial matter. They messed the whole thing up and charged me for their time in fixing it. I wanted to know about my time? How come I don't get credit for that? Great post!

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Erin said...

and this is why it makes me so angry that my husband and doc demanded i do my writing during the day instead of in the early morning w/ you. le sigh.