Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Stand Up!

When I proposed the idea of doing stand up to my 14 year old son, he said,
"You should do it Mom."

I tried out some material. He laughed. Of course, I am his mother and I do give him a nice allowance. He's not exactly objective you understand.

So every morning I drive him to high school. In two years, he'll have a license and then my life will be radically better.

"Son #1, take child #6 to activity #47."

"I'll be a chauffeur?" He asked.
"As long as you have my car keys."
My son was silent as he wrestled with this revelation.

"How is it you turn every joy into an errand?" he finally asked.

"See, I've been 16. It won't matter that you're chugging kids all across town. You'll be so pumped. You'll say, "Hey Mom, do any of my siblings have an evening activity that you don't want to deal with? I'll be glad to drive."

"It won't matter that you drive to the same places I've been taking you for years. It won't matter that it is only ten miles from home. You'll pull into the parking lot of your elementary school and you'll drop off your brother for Cub Scouts and be thinking....(drop voice half an octave) THIS IS SO COOL.....I'm driving....with the windows down....and the radio on.....it's 23 degrees outside....It's still cool.....there's my elementary school Spanish teacher....yeah....I remember you....I had a "C" in your class....it kept me off the Principal's list....I've got a two ton vehicle at my disposal.....(Raises voice artificially high, waving) "Hello Mrs. Bailey...." (Drop voice again) I'll just rev the engine....just to make her nervous."

I am a mother of...counts on fingers...five, six..no eight, EIGHT? yes eight children.....I was never very good at math.

See...if I had been good at arithmetic, I'd understand exponents and multiplication and compound interest.

You're thinking...where is she going with this I know. Hang with me.

See, if I had paid better attention in math, I'd know that if it takes three hours to do the laundry for one child, one for wash, one for dry, one for fold and put away....that having a home with ten people, plus sheets and towels would take....counts on fingers...wait a minute...carry the 2....and...okay, 36 hours. That's Day ONE.

If I got math and it's tricky things with numbers, I'd know that fixing four meals a day for seven people, (Breakfast, lunch, dinner +snacks), that that comes out to 40 meals a day, Times Seven which results in 280 plates served in a week. If each meal takes an hour, that's 28 hours spent in meal prep. DAY TWO.

Now it gets tricky. See...I've spent 54 hours feeding people and doing laundry and I haven't brushed my teeth...and I don't know if anyone noticed, but there wasn't any sleep in those two days either....

I'm not sure if I should be operating heavy machinery at this point, but driving is a big part of my every day too. I estimate three hours are spent in the car and an additional three getting kids into and out of it. Six hours a day equals 42 a week...there are 168 hours in a week. I'm up to 106 and haven't showered.

It's getting bad.

But hey. I still have 42 hours left.

The reason I bring this up...is that I'm here. I haven't had to cook a meal..I haven't had to do some laundry...I have all this free time on my hands...so naturally I thought...Let's do some standup comedy.

It's either that or step into the back of the hotel and ask if I can do some dishes...I have all this time! I'm thinking of taking up learning cuneiform. Really, there's all these unscheduled minutes. What do I do? I've already brushed my teeth six times today...just because I can.

I'm here.

When I told people I was going to a writing conference in Dayton. They looked at me funny. "What are you going to do with the kids?" they asked.

I looked at them. "What?"

"I mean...we own a microwave.
...And a TV.
...They have a phone."

"Did you get a babysitter?"
"No."

"No?"
"No. I'm not paying their father ten bucks an hour to watch the kids. I'm just not doing it.....He did ask."

"I agreed to order pizza....

They'll be fine."

“When you have eight kids, you get asked a lot of odd questions. From really odd people. Don’t you know how this works? Are you going to have any more?

Questions that I naturally like answering to complete and total strangers on a regular basis.

The worst of it though was when I went shopping for a twelve passenger van.

“Are you part of a church or something?”
“No, it’s for my family.”

“So, you need a vehicle that big?”

“Yes.”

“Really?” His voice is getting squeaky and high.

“Really. “

“What? Do you and your husband just every few years get the urge?”
And I said….”Yes.”

“He’s really, really …really really….really really ….good.” Raise eyebrow.

Now my husband is my editor and vets my writing and stand-up bits whenever he gets the chance.

He said I should really have another really in there…just for comic effect you understand.

Love you Sweetie!

4 comments:

Larramie said...

I laughed and loved your experience at buying a new vehicle...YIKES! *G*

suburbancorrespondent said...

I prefer not to add up the hours. Too depressing.

You're brave. At least, with writing, you don't know if people think you suck. Or if they do let you know, at least they're not in the same room with you when you find out.

Stormy said...

This was a piece of brilliance.

*hands you a large golden comedy prize*

Thank you for making my morning. :)

SherryTex said...

Thanks! I wondered if the timing was just funny to me.

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!