Wednesday, August 19, 2009

I Don't Know How Anyone Can Live Here

Yesterday, I took all the kids bowling at Chelsea Piers, which is like the Buckingham Palace of bowling, assuming that the Buckingham Palace is air conditioned and overpriced.

I totally won, too. I never believed in "losing on purpose" to build up your kids' self-esteem or some such crap. I think that losing on purpose makes your kid think that they don't have to try hard and also that their parents are stupid. I don't need any more evidence in that department, thank you.

So I win, and then while I'm taking my victory lap, this kid runs up to my son and it turns out that they went to camp together and they're happily reuniting and he says to my son, "hey, can I come over to your house to play?"

And my son, who has been pining for a play date, looks unsure and says, "well, yes, but I have to warn you, my apartment is really small." Of course at this time, I am trying to restart my own heart which momentarily stopped beating from shock because although our apartment is certainly smaller than Buckingham Palace, it does have four bedrooms, so it's not quite fitting the tenement description that my son is invoking, but his friend, all full of sympathy, says, "don't worry about it, my place is tiny as well."

Who are these children?

Surely they don't want for me to tell them how I grew up in a communal apartment that had two bedrooms, a kitchen that everyone ate in and one bathroom for two families to share. They don't need to hear that I shared a bedroom with my parents for the first nine years of my life and that I never hesitated to invite anyone over to my house because the square footage wasn't to my liking.

But then fortune smiles on me and the kid's babysitter says that he can't come over because she's never met me before and apparently she doesn't like sending her charge with random strangers. I totally approve of this plan and try to look as menacing as possible to encourage her paranoid safety concerns, because, please, if I go bowling with three kids, coming home with four isn't my idea of a relaxing afternoon.

Besides, I'm not sure that I could stuff an extra kid into our apartment. It's small, you know.

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Blogger RenĂ©e aka Mekhismom said...

I find children's perceptions of things amazing. Growing up the majority of my friends lived in extraordinarily large homes. I lived in 2 bedroom apartment with my mother. This however did not keep me from asking her "where is our maid?" because ALL of my friends had live-ins. She responded "You're looking at her" and that was the end of that.

August 19, 2009 at 12:01 PM  
Blogger Wendy said...

Having grown up in a trailer (complete with a trailer park, but no Eminem, alas), I feel ya. My "bedroom" didn't even have a "door"!

I'd sooner think the babysitter was just intimidated (shocked, amazed) by your bowling skillz. Yeah, that's it.

August 19, 2009 at 12:05 PM  
Blogger Suzy said...

Chelsea Piers makes Earth look small.

August 19, 2009 at 12:56 PM  
Blogger Christy said...

I didn't even know they made four bedroom apartments in NYC. When I used to have friends who lived there - they lived in like half a studio! ha!

August 19, 2009 at 1:16 PM  
Blogger Sophie, Inzaburbs said...

Your son has obviously already learned one of life's valuable lessons.
No matter how well endowed you think you are, someone will always come along who is big- better.

August 19, 2009 at 1:18 PM  
Blogger Kimberly said...

he needs a semester of boarding school

August 19, 2009 at 1:20 PM  
Blogger Sukanya said...

Ok. I am green with envy - 4 bedrooms in Manhattan. If your son wants to see what a 'real' small apartment looks like feel free to send him over to my house.

August 19, 2009 at 3:33 PM  
Blogger Magpie said...

I think I wouldn't be living in the suburbs if I had four bedrooms...

August 19, 2009 at 3:59 PM  
Blogger Nanny Goats In Panties said...

Yeah, where are these 4 bedroom apartments of which you speak? Are you taking up the top floor of some Trump Tower somewhere?

August 19, 2009 at 5:21 PM  
Blogger Annje said...

My cracker-box of a house doesn't even have 4 bedrooms. Since you are obviously a danger to children I think you should have sent all the kids home with the babysitter.

August 19, 2009 at 6:30 PM  
Blogger Carolyn...Online said...

I'm just getting the mental image of you doing your victory lap and I'm hoping you didn't spill your Cosmo.

August 19, 2009 at 7:07 PM  
Blogger Carolyn...Online said...

I'm just getting the mental image of you doing your victory lap and I'm hoping you didn't spill your Cosmo.

August 19, 2009 at 7:07 PM  
Blogger Carolyn...Online said...

Why did my comment post twice? Did my laptop think you needed to read it twice? Does my pinky finger have a palsey and hit the enter key two times?

August 19, 2009 at 7:08 PM  
Blogger Mwa said...

I completely agree with you on not letting kids win. It's ridiculous. I mean, fine, maybe once or twice when they're tiny, but after that they should just learn the bloody game.

My kid thinks our house is too small and we actually have a garden and four bedrooms. Children are freaks.

August 19, 2009 at 7:14 PM  
Blogger Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

Oh Lord. 4 bedrooms! It's practically a hovel, right? Maybe he was trying to get invited to the other kid's house instead?

August 19, 2009 at 9:02 PM  
Blogger SweetPeaSurry said...

If people let their kids win all the time, how can they learn a healthy sense of competition?

(I was thinking, oh right we don't need competition anymore since the gubment is going to take care of EVERYONE ... but I felt that might be going to far!!)

Sounds like a super fun day though, I haven't been bowling myself in AGES!!! I may have to go soon! He he he!


August 19, 2009 at 9:14 PM  
Blogger the mama bird diaries said...

I am laughing my ass of at this post.

And yes, you are right... if you return home with more kids than you left with, something has gone terribly wrong.

August 19, 2009 at 11:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

At least you beat him at bowling. Dorm life/summer camp will take care of his perception of scale and communal living.

August 20, 2009 at 12:07 AM  
Blogger Shana said...

I don't believe in that "letting kids win" thing either. And as a result? As lame as I am, my 10 year old thinks I'm, like, an Olympian. Because I? Win EVERYTHING! Booyah!

Having her ass routinely kicked by her mom in everything from Yahtzee to hula hooping is a *character building* experience. Right? RIGHT?

PS: any outing that ends with bringing home more children than you left with=FAIL

August 20, 2009 at 9:08 AM  
Blogger BabyonBored said...

I liked that post so much I attempted to re-follow you. But Blogger (the bastard) won't let me say, "I really really like you." Only, "I really like you."

Also, this compliment includes the Skank post above which made me laugh.

August 20, 2009 at 11:43 AM  
Blogger bernthis said...

I just insist we all go to the park so if they want to complain how small that is they can call the damn parks department and I don't have to worry about it

August 20, 2009 at 7:46 PM  
Blogger ~Laura said...

Having lived briefly in a small (800 sq ft) 2 bedroom apartment (with twins!) in Manhattan, I had to laugh at this post. Only true NYC children could have this conversation!

August 22, 2009 at 10:00 AM  
Blogger CSY said...

Dang! I thought our house was tiny. We live in a 4 bdrm 2 bath (FINALLY) house in the country...everything is smaller in NYC? REALLY?!?!?!

August 25, 2009 at 1:52 PM  

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