Friday, March 14, 2008

what really gets my goat

here's a little fact for you: i have an ego. yes, it's true. i admit that i smirk when people say "nordstroms" or "barnes & nobles" or use words that really have no meaning at all like "nice" or "sweet" (for example: sweet husband, that makes me cringe). i think, "how silly they sound." and then i think, "i would never say something like that."

here's the saddest part about that: i hate people who have egos. i hate it when people are superior. in fact, nothing grates on my nerves more than ego. and i happen to, every tuesday, be surrounded by such enormous egos i should be dead by now. from brain hemorrhaging. because i swear, when they talk, i can feel my blood oozing in to my brain. it makes sloshing noises as i walk away.

that's a whole other blog entry (really, it is, and it shall be told because seriously? the stories!). the superiority i'm going to rant about today is parental superiority.

really quickly (sort of a refresher for those of you who may be new to the blog). ava's my daughter. admittedly, she's my only daughter and all of this stupid parental superiority is coming from parents who have more than one child (usually, sometimes i can't tell), but she is my daughter. i do spend 11 hours of my day with her. and 2 extra hours in the house cleaning up her mess while she naps. so i'd say i might be considered an ava expert, am i right?

so what's with the people who have to tell me about her? for example, the old woman at the grocery store. ava was mad at me because we were not taking the shopping cart with the enormous car attached. for several reasons, (1) it's big and awkward, (2) it's hard to push (really hard to steer), and (3) because i didn't want to. she's doing this half-whine half-heartedly slapping the handlebar of the cart thing where she's mad but it's fake and she'll get over it. and she does. because some grandmotherly-type woman is standing nearby and ava thinks, 'hey, maybe she'll tell me i'm cute.'

this woman eyeballs me (and i mean really eyeballs me) and says, "she's tired."

but it's not, "excuse me, but i'm a mother and a grandmother and your daughter seems kind of cranky so i was wondering if maybe she's a little tired? (don't worry, dear, we've all been there, being a mom is the greatest thing you'll ever do, but it's also very hard)"

no. that would have been nice. then we would have had a nice moment. then we would have smiled and i would have walked away with my head a little higher and ava's half-hearted temper tantrum falling on my deaf super-mommy ears.

no. she says, "she's tired." as in, you look like a terrible mother who doesn't know anything and didn't read any of the books and i'm a mother and a grandmother and currently your child is dying from the awful job you're doing.

so i smiled politely and said, "well, maybe." because for the record? ava was not tired. the child doesn't nap until early afternoon and this was early morning (like 9).

"no," says extra hostile granny. "she's tired. look, she can barely keep her eyes open."

i just walked away. but i wish i'd chewed her out. i don't care if you took in twelve teenage ted bundy's and turned them in to ward cleaver and they all come visit every sunday with a girl and a boy each and maybe even a dog and a pot roast. DON'T TALK TO ME LIKE THAT. because really? WHO ARE YOU? i am the child's mother and yeah, she didn't come with a text book, but i think i'm doing a pretty good job. SO BACK OFF.

in fact, i really wish i'd chewed her out. i really hope she's at the grocery store on monday morning.

let's hear your pet peeves.


carol said...

Yeah, seriously, where do people get off acting like they know your own kid better than you do? Did no one criticize THEM when they were young mothers??!!! (Because it is not just her; these people are legion!) Or maybe they got criticized so much they figure everyone else has it coming right back. I used to know a woman who had no children who would tell me what I was doing wrong in raising my kids. To her credit, after she had kids of her own, she apologized to me and admitted she didn't know what she was talking about. If only more people were aware that every kid and every parent is unique and you can only raise your own kid the way you raise that particular kid. What works with one won't work with the other, and what works for one parent won't work for another. I see this all the time, people telling other people what they're doing wrong with their children. Give me a break!! GRRRRRRRRR.
Thanks for venting and letting me vent. Ava and you are both "sweet." (Ha ha!) I'm looking forward to hearing about the people in class.

tara said...

I have a few pet peeves:
1) People susshhing me during sacrament meeting when someone pronounces something wrong or I laugh at a funny memory.
2)Not enough ice cream with my cake.
3)Someone else using my bath towel and getting their gross germs all over it.

And that is only the beginning...

redstarmama said...

I will wholeheartedly agree with your irritation, and add my own story. The other night in the produce section of Safeway, I was selecting a pineapple, and Declan happened to be standing with me, checking out the other tropical fruit on the stand. He points to a fruit and says,"Mommy, can we get some apples?" The middle-aged man next to us snorts and says,"That's not an apple!" As if my four year old knows what a mango looks like. He's 4. He's never seen a whole mango before. And a mango is red and green, like his favorite apples. I smiled insincerely at the moron and then kindly educated my child, as said moron walked away laughing. At a little boy. What's wrong with people today?!

Liz said...

Maybe the mean old grandma will read your blog...we can always hope.... :) I hate know-it-alls and I've known a few. It gets tiring to always have to be the bigger person and walk away after humoring them. Oh well, life's too short to let someone like that ruin your day. Instead, just plan your revenge and seek her out at the grocery store next time you go, then unleash all the good stuff you've been tumbling about in your head for her over the past few days. :) Good luck! ...poor grandma...she'll never know what hit her.

Kari said...

Miriam I love reading your posts. The way you write always brings me a smile, even stories about grouchy old ladies at the grocery store.

Hernan said...

I am one of those "knows-it-all" you are talking about!!!!

this blog to me is like "New mama's for dummies" being us the dummies... because i didn't have any idea how hard it would be to be a mom... and how stupid and insensitive we are some times towards it and under estimate that role.

So so far I learned:
Not to eat my pregnant women sandwich: Checked
Not to criticize her look,ways or house: Checked
Take care of the baby every time I can: Checked.
very useful blog.

AnnieOfBlueGables said...

yeah, I am one of those who uses the term "sweet Husband" because he really is such a very kind, caring and nice person, with all the best intentions. He is sweet. A GEM. So, dear bird, if that drives you nuts when I do that, sorry, I will warn you I will continue to refer to him as sweet. No other word fits.

My pet peeve? first: that expression. Pet Peeve. uck. oh well

second: being corrected, yes like you. Some stupid lady in church told me I was feeding my children pure sugar when I brought marshmallows to eat as a snack once. I don't get mad, I become hurt and it ruins my day. . .

third: Those people who take their children throughout WalMart allowing them to scream the whole fricken time. I realize I have not been in their shoes and maybe they have no choice, but I end up with a migraine by the time I leave. I also realize they cannot swat them, because security cameras would arrest them for child abuse. So instead of criticizing the one woman (who was shopping with two screaming children at midnight in Smiths one evening as I was heading home from a concert I had just performed), I said, "it must be so hard, I am so sorry, can I help you get that milk out of the dairy case for you?" She practically broke down right there. She was crying as she confessed that tomorrow was her oldest daughter's baptism, a bazillion relatives were coming, and her husband wouldn't watch these two little ones, so she could put them to bed and shop without stress. She told me I was the first one who spoke kindly to her, everyone else was giving her dirty looks and judging her. I felt so bad for having made a snap judgment, but was glad I had not joined the ranks of the ones who caused her further grief.

I have seen husband's referred to as DH and I asked someone on a blog what that meant. It was explained it meant "dear Husband" I have a new name for this jerk she was married to:
DUMB husband.

I am sorry "old" grannies drive you nuts when they say something to you in the grocery store. Some of us don't feel any older than we were when we were in your shoes. Some of us feel like we are still raising our own, even though they are all married and raising their own kids. We know better, but can identify from our own experiences and sometimes when we speak to perfect strangers in the grocery store, we are sympathizing, rather than criticizing. Probably reliving situations just like yours, back in the "olden days."
You never know what a kind word will do to someone who is really driving you nuts.
I sure was taken aback when this sweet young mother started crying, just because I spoken softly to her, rather than give her harsh looks.

~best regards,


bird said...

hernan, you will be the best husband and father because of me.