I had an interesting Memorial Day. I spent it in our neighborhood pool concession stand with four teenage lifeguards. If you want to feel as old as the earth, spend a day in a concession stand with four teenage lifeguards.
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It's pouring rain, and no one's at the pool. The only
reason I'm with the lifeguards is that I have to decide if the barbecue party is still on. So, okay it's cool. I can hang. I was a teenager once, I know wassup.
No I don't. I don't know wassup at all. They're talking about exams, and I haven't crammed for an exam in two decades. And I'm pretty sure registering my kids for camp just a week before it starts doesn't count. The only thing I'm cramming now is my post-baby body into pre-baby shorts.
Glad I'm not wearing my oversized cover-up and giant straw hat. But even in shorts, t-shirt, and flip-flops, I can't say I completely blend in, as they are all in bathing suits. Nothing like standing next to an 18 year-old in a bikini - who says no matter what she eats, she can't gain weight. I'm still working off a Reuben I ate in late April.
And these kids are on the clock. They came to work, but it rained. So now they get to play cards. And here I am, a volunteer, stressing out. They're playing Gin and I'm poised to feed 300 people lunch.
Ugh. Call me T'bone, I contemplate saying. It's what my Dad used to call me as a teen. If Sting can keep his little name, why can't I keep mine? But I lose my nerve and ask if they want some barbecue, seeing as though I'm leaning against 58 pounds of it.
And then I start bustling around like the Mom that I am - dishing out pork, while they play Hangman, knowing I'm about go home to my stir crazy kids who want to build a village out of Play-Doh.
What I wouldn't give for a day like theirs - to sit with friends in a snack shack and play cards in a rainstorm. The only way that could happen is if I won some kind of contest and that was the prize: One Goof-Off Day for 4, 1 Tiny Official Lifeguard Bikini, and free barbecue. And a paycheck.
Days later, there's another rainstorm. And with the kids' activities cancelled, some of us gals get together. Nobody wears a bikini, but the idea's the same. We just hang out.
And it's sort of nice to have all the answers to the questions I had back then. Yes, I passed Communications Law. No, my parents didn't buy me a new car for graduation. Yes, I found work in journalism. I did get married, I did have children, and I succumbed to the SUV, the PTA and SPF 80.
And life is pretty darn good.
Anyone for Spades?