It began as an angry shout to the damn housewife that ran the stop sign this morning on my way to dropping off my toddler at daycare until it swan-dived into a feeble and listless sigh.
“Hoe. Lee. Crap.” It was all I could utter after realizing how pathetic I must have sounded; Ava and her two giant eyeballs stared back at me with concern in the rear view.
Side note: I use profane language. Anybody that really knows me – I’m talking about people I have hung out with on a social level – has heard an array of colorful language exit my pie hole. I’m not necessarily proud of this, mind you. But I am making a valid effort to severely tone it down, especially when I’m trucking around the kids. I can’t have them pick up on my bad habits…
“Cock, daddy! Cock, cock, caca do!”
Ava then broke out in a fit of giggles as if this was the funniest thing she had ever heard.
Son of a…
The feeling you get in your gut like you’ve done something wrong, that you’re going to have a lot of explaining to do, yeah, I was feeling that. I envisioned my daughter getting punished at school and me getting grilled at home while some hippy lady in an eco-friendly Japanese car drives carelessly away, causing accidents while saving the Earth. I mean, she came straight out of nowhere and nearly – WTF?
She pulled into my daughter’s school! And it’s at this moment where I envision the scene: school parking lot, the rising sun begins to peak above neighborhood treetops towards the east. She’s going to do one of three things:
- Pretend nothing happened
- Apologize for driving like a crazy wench
- Do what all crap drivers do when they know they messed up: pretend it’s your fault.
Side note: Flashback roughly 25 years ago when my father drove me back to school after a morning dentist appointment. Some kid cut through the elementary parking to get to the high school lot like a bat out of hell, nearly clipping our car in the process. Instead of walking me to the front office, my father ordered me to get back in the car. He chased down the kid onto the high school campus and scared the living you know what out of him. Had my dad pulled such a move in today’s world he’d have been tasered and hogtied so fast his head would spin.
I readied myself for either scenario. I thought about what to say without sounding like a complete jerk yet still convey to her that she nearly killed me. “In a rush?” or “Did you see that stop sign back there?” made me sound like a stupid traffic cop. Mix in some curse words and you get a different result:
“In a f#&*ing rush?” “Did you see that son of a b&*ch stop sign back there?”
You get my point. Those of you with young children will also understand my dilemma. Do I be assertive and let this woman know what’s up or do I censor myself for the sake of my kid? What the hell is a father to do?
As it turned out, she went with neither A, B or C. It was more like D. None of the Above; the hippy merely sat behind the wheel and waited for me to wiggle my daughter out of her car seat before taking her spawn and making a mad dash inside. She underestimated my quickness, however, and Ava and I were soon about 15 feet behind her. She was probably out of earshot anyway, unless I made a scene and yelled at her.
I just wanted her to see me; I wasn’t going to be yelling or making a scene.
“Daddy, ba-noney face caca, caca do!”
Because that’s what kids are for.