Rain, Rain Here To Stay

It won’t stop raining. Everyone is trying not to complain because, well, the lakes have been dry for ages now. They are finally filling up, which is good. Good, good, good! But still. This is North Texas, not Portland or Seattle.

At the end of a recent workday, I began the long trek across the poorly leveled parking lot. In the rain. Like usual. There were a couple of people ahead of me and it struck me that there are three kinds of people in this new world of ours. And they were being illustrated in that moment.

The first are those poor fools who still haven’t figured out that the sky is highly likely to open up and dump on them. They can be seen crossing the parking lot with their shoulders hunched to their ears, their shirt and pant legs quickly turning dark from the absorbed moisture. They hesitate at the large puddles, as if trying to decide whether it’s better to just give up and splash through or take the time to find a route around. They are drenched by the time they get to their car. Such a person was one of the ones ahead of me.

The second are the average folk. They have an umbrella or raincoat and thus walk more deliberately to their destination. They are not immune to the puddles, though. Those suckers will come up over the top of your shoes if you try to walk through them! So they approach each row of cars with an eye out. They sometimes have to walk along the row for several cars before finding a place of safe passage. The other person in front of me was one of these.

Then there are the wise, the special, the few. These people, these people, have learned. No old dogs here. Yes, these people stride with confidence and grace, taking the most direct path to their vehicle, heedless of any depth of water the parking lot might throw their way. They are dry under their umbrella, but more importantly, their feet are safe and cozy in their giant rain boots. They take a childlike pleasure in splashing through the deep puddles. I am one of these people. I even take it a step further: my umbrella matches my rain boots. I know. You only wish you were half as cool as me.

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Common Sense Takes a Hike

There are certain things that seem like common sense to a parent. These are things you don’t think you ever actually need to explain to your child. Especially if your child has been identified as “Gifted and Talented”. And it’s not really like you think, “Well, I don’t need to tell her about this. I’m sure she understands.” It just seems so plainly obvious that you never even think of mentioning it. Like this classic for Jane:

You should never microwave your jacket.

See? That’s just not something I ever thought I needed to say. Nevertheless, it would have saved a jacket and a microwave if I had thought to say it. I thought that maybe the jacket was an isolated incident, but sadly, I was mistaken.

On two separate occasions recently, both Jane’s father and I have had to speak this gem:

Don’t take your cell phone with you in the shower.

Yes, I would have thought that it would be quite evident that water and electronics don’t mix. Apparently, though, the need to listen to her tunes overrode common sense. Twice.

And at the conclusion of Sunday’s volleyball game, my husband found himself saying the following words:

You need to tie your shoes when participating in a sport.

Now, don’t misunderstand. This isn’t a simple matter of a shoe coming untied and a busy child failing to notice or, noticing, failing to stop and tie. No, this is a child that has been insisting she needs new shoes for volleyball because she is getting blisters and having other problems. Turns out, she’s not tying her shoes. She’s merely tucking the laces inside. This is a common teen dressing habit for school. You would think that common sense would clearly indicate, however, that this habit is not appropriate on the volleyball court. But, alas, it does not.

This makes me wonder what words are waiting to be spoken next.