Well, I’m happy to report that not only did we survive Swimming Lessons Day 2, BUT we also managed to resolve the stuck underwear problem. Last night I was telling my brother about our day, and (when I got to the locker room debacle part of the swimming lessons story) he exclaimed, “That kid’s underwear ALWAYS get stuck. Every time we go swimming, I have to yoink up his drawers. It’s SO frustrating!” See, folks, yesterday’s kerfluffle was not just a result of babysitting incompetence! I AM VINDICATED!
This morning, having learned my lesson yesterday, I decided we’d address the issue when there weren’t a lot of people around to laugh at us. I took J. aside in the playroom and said, “Dude, we gotta fix this whole stuck underwear thing, ok?”
“Ok, but they ALWAYS get stuck!”
“Listen, and I’ll tell you how to fix it. First you have to dry off your butt, legs and feet. Don’t just dry them once, do it twice. If your butt’s wet, you’re gonna stick. Right?”
“Ok. Next, your Daddy says that when you put on your underpants, you wriggle all around like this,” and I ACTUALLY demonstrated underwear wriggling – this is my life now. “If you squirm, the fabric will get twisted, and then you’ll get stuck. Okay?”
“Yep. But if I don’t wiggle, how do I get them on?”
“You gotta do ‘em one leg at a time. You just stick your finger in the bottom of the leg hole, and pull them up as high as they’ll go. Then you do the OTHER leg hole the same way. Then you pull the waist up – and you just keep doing that until your underwear are all the way on. Understand?
“Kinda? Can you SHOW me?”
I have to admit that we then stole A.’s favorite stuffed animal, Happy Bear, got a pair of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle underpants, and staged a demonstration which was embarrassing on so many levels that I can’t even discuss it. The point, however, was gotten.
So off we went to the pool. J. did even BETTER today, and the “real” Mommies were significantly nicer to me because their kids wanted to talk to me about comic books. I had an awesome conversation with a 4 year old about The Amazing Spiderman. I promised him I’d wear my Batman t-shirt tomorrow so he could see it. We also discussed ethical relativity as it applies to alien life (“Well, ALL aliens aren’t bad, but the ones in Battleship ARE), and decided that getting bitten by a radioactive spider was totally worth it.
After J.’s swim (HE CAN FLOAT NOW, PEOPLE!), we trekked over to the Men’s Room to get him changed. He disappeared through the door, and a few minutes passed before I had a report. I noticed during the interval that the “real” Mommies just threw t-shirts on their kids, and let them wear their swimming trunks home, probably with good reason.
Finally, J. yells, “I DIDN’T WIGGLE AT ALL, BUT THEY’RE STILL STUCK! ARRGH!”
“Do you remember how you’re supposed to pull them up? One leg at a time, okay? Remember Happy Bear?”
Total silence and THEN:
“HEY, IT WORKS!!!!!! THANKS FOR HELPING ME AUNTIE!”
Hosanna! I have rarely been so proud of anything in my life.
IN OTHER NEWS: Yesterday was the very first day of real driving in my niece Ninja’s Driver’s Ed class. Ninja has a few disadvantages in terms of Driver’s Ed humiliation mitigation. First, she lives in a really small town. Second, her step-father is ½ of the local police department. Third, the only vehicle available for the kids to drive is a white paneled cargo/rape van. The police report from yesterday might read something like this:
1:00PM Ninja begins her turn at driving the rape van.
1:02PM Step-father thinks it might be a good idea to check on Ninja
1:07PM 9-1-1 call logged; transcript follows:
“9-1-1, what’s your emergency?”
“Hi! There’s a suspicious white cargo van going around and around the block, REALLY SLOWLY. I think it’s someone trying to kidnap some kids or something. You guys need to check it out!”
1:11PM Officer D. arrives on scene, determines that driver is a student and his step-daughter. Reports incident to wife, who informs rest of family.
1:23PM Everyone laughs. A lot.
Way to go, Ninja. I know when I gave you that driving lesson, I said that going over 10mph was not only super bad and would kill us all, but that it was also immoral. I was probably mostly exaggerating. You can go 12mph now. Any more than that, and the moon will crash into the Pacific Ocean. You go kid!