I should’ve eaten my children when they were babies. Lots of mammals eat their young. Male lions find their offspring to be quite tasty. And it seems to me that if one were going to eat one’s children, infancy would be the best time to attempt it. After all, infants are mostly cartilage and fat, so they would be reasonably easy to chew and digest. And they aren’t big enough to fight back, so there would be no prolonged battle. Nope, just a couple of gulps and that would be the end. There would be no messy crime scene to explain to the police, no bodies to hide. And, best of all, there would be NO TEENAGERS!!!
Unfortunately, it didn’t occur to me to eat them when they were babies. They were so cuddly and cute back then. They smelled really good, especially after a bath. But then they grew. And grew. And they became mouthy. And pimply. And mean. They began to fight among themselves, pulling hair and cursing each other, calling each other foul names. They generally began to comport themselves like animals, thereby leading me to fantasize about the above scenario. This is because they are now teenagers.
Normally, I quite like teenagers. Having never progressed very far beyond the age of 14 in terms of personality development, I get along with teenagers quite well. I think farts are hysterically funny. I snicker when someone says “BJ”. I think two dozen oreos and a Coke is a well-balanced meal. I understand the teenage mind. I actually love working in a high school all day and hanging out with teenagers. It thrills me that someday soon I might get paid to hang out with them all day, because I will be with my own kind and we can compose symphonies out of armpit farts.
But when it comes to the teenagers I birthed….well, that’s another story entirely! I do love them and I’m obscenely proud of them and their accomplishments. They are becoming remarkable people in their own right and normally, I am proud to be associated with them. And then there are times like this evening when, well, I wish I had eaten them in their infancy because morons such as themselves should not be allowed to roam the earth. It’s not fair to the rest of humanity.
Take this evening, for example. I was on my way home from my evening class when Stalin called. The older children were clamoring to be dropped off at the high school because they wanted to watch a soccer game. Stalin was not thrilled with the idea, but I told him I didn’t mind picking them up, so he agreed. Alas, if only I had known how it would all end!!! I would have ordered him to drive them, not to the soccer field, but to the nearest sweatshop to sell them into indentured servitude. A couple of 18 hour shifts of sticking the googly-eyes on plastic frogs would have done them a world of good.
But they went to the soccer game, not the sweatshop. And when they called me and asked me to come pick them up, I had no premonition of the disaster it would be. I pulled into the parking lot and saw them standing behind the fence. I also saw someone I knew, so I rolled down the window to speak with her. As we were talking, Dumb and Dumber came galumphing toward the car. They galloped around the front and slammed together into the passenger side door, screeching like baboons in heat. The woman I was talking with quickly made an excuse and hurried for her car. I could hardly blame her since my offspring were frantically ramming each other into the side of the car, each attempting to be the one to sit in the front seat. Yes, that’s right: they were battling to see who would ride “shotgun”.
There are so many reasons to condemn this battle and I hardly know where to begin. Let’s start with the fact that he is SEVENTEEN and she is FIFTEEN!!!! Far too old to be fighting over ‘shotgun’! In less than two months, my oldest child will be considered a ‘LEGAL ADULT’, may God have mercy on us all, yet he will fight to the death to be allowed to sit in the front seat. And we live approximately 1.7 miles from the school; it takes about five minutes to travel between home and school, so why does it matter which seat you’re in? And I don’t even have satellite radio!! It’s plain old broadband, or whatever you call regular radio. And I am MEAN at night, so no one in their right mind would want to sit next to me anyway. But did I say that either of them were in their right mind?? They continued to hurl themselves against the side of my car, and as other people passed, they stared in wonder at the sight of my children comporting themselves like a couple of rabid wombats strung out on bad cabbage. It was not a sight to make a mother proud.
I rolled down the window and screamed “STOP IT RIGHT NOW!” but they paid me absolutely no attention!!! I screamed again, “STOP IT,” and they continued to slam against the car. By now, I was beside myself with rage. It had been a long day, I had been generous enough to offer to come and pick them up, and they were behaving like mutants. I began to lose my grip on common sense.
Bear that last sentence in mind, because I decided the best course of action would be to drive away from them and let them finish beating the crap out of each other in the parking lot. So I put the car in drive and began to inch away. Only, the little bastards wouldn’t let go of the car. In fact, Napoleon threw himself onto the trunk, gripping the sides, and MA….well, MA held onto the front door as I drove, OPENED IT WHILE I WAS DRIVING and then flung herself into the car triumphantly.
Oh gentle reader, how the profanity began to fly!!! I slammed on the brakes and shrieked at Napoleon to get his “)@#*$)#@U$ ASS in the )@#*$)@#*$)(#@(* car right now before I kicked his O@#*$)@#U$)@#(I$)(!!!!!” He got in, and I let forth such a stream of profanity so as to actually steam up the windows. They both blinked at me owlishly, then Napoleon said “MA, I dropped your wallet back there when you kneed me.” They both snickered.
“WHAT??????” I shrieked, and then issued forth an even more blistering stream of profanity, liberally laced with insults regarding the size of their pea heads. I whipped the car into a parking space, rammed it into reverse, and shot backward, cursing all the while. I roared back to where the battle had taken place and ordered Napoleon to get his )#*$)@#U$)(@#U$)(#@ ass out of the )@#$*)@#U$)(#@U car to find the wallet.
“Why do I HAVE TO DO IT?” he whined.
“Because YOU’RE THE MORON WHO DROPPED IT!!!!” I thundered. Just as I was about to launch into another hair-singeing blast of profanity, a man approached our car, waving MA’s wallet like a peace offering. I stopped short, an F-bomb hovering in the air, as he leaned in the window and handed the wallet to MA. “I see you won,” he snickered. “Good job!”
“Oh my God,” I said, “I am so embarrassed!!! I actually tried to drive away with my children hanging on to the car!! You must think I’m terrible!!!”
“Actually,” he said, “I was pretty impressed. Have a good night.” And he walked away, laughing.
Abruptly, I deflated. “You two are SO STUPID,” I said witheringly. “Fist-fighting like hooligans right here in the parking lot. I’m ASHAMED OF YOU!!”
MA looked at me and rolled her eyes. “God mom,” she said contemptuously, “we weren’t fist fighting, we were BUTT-FIGHTING!!!” Right, because I’m the idiot here!! Whether they were fighting with fists or butts, one thing is clear: I should have eaten them that first week of life, when they were still tender, and before they could grow up to embarrass me with their parking lot brawls. A little salt, a dash of Tabasco, and the little buggers would have been right tasty!!