Holiday Coma


Anybody know what day it is? The holidays came on Tuesday this year, which made Monday a Saturday, Tuesday a Sunday, and Wednesday through Friday totally unidentifiable. Okay, the egg nog didn’t help.

Anyway, I’m pretty sure tonight is New Year’s Eve, so have a happy and healthy 2013.

My Master Plan

before we knew better...Because I’ve been winning the Airport Wars, I got to make two trips to LAX in the last two days.  Yesterday, Henry. This morning, Quinn.

Before we left, I asked Quinn if he had checked-in online.

“No,” he replied breezily, “I’m checking a bag so I’ll just do it when I get there.”

It being a) the crack of dawn and b) part of my master plan to let my kids suffer the consequences of their own actions, I said nothing.

At the airport, we took our requisite cell phone photo memento (see above), then I headed home. It’s always hard to be sad when Quinn goes away because he’s always so HAPPY to be going where he’s going. But I couldn’t help myself.

I  had just settled in at my desk when I got a text from the traveler.

Him: “Can’t locate my record.  (Expletive deleted) American.”

Me: “Need I say this is why you get your boarding pass the night b4?  Or is that gratuitous at this point?”

Him: “Gratuitous.”

The texts that followed included him bitching about an uncooperative ticket kiosk and an obtuse human agent, and my advice about how to guilt trip said agent into giving him priority access when she realized the error of American Airlines’ ways. And then I got this one…

Him: “Apparently, I booked my flight for January 29…”

We’re all aware, right, that today is December 29?

What’s a mother to do?

If I stick to my master plan, nothing. I send a few sympathetic texts, go about my day and let him suffer the consequences, in this case, an insanely expensive same-day ticket purchase, connections through snow-bound cities, and general holiday airport misery.

And then I think….what possible harm could it do to see if I have any frequent flyer miles taking up virtual space at

Cut to… me discovering that for a mere 25,000 miles I could get him a non-stop ticket just a few hours later. Oh. And did I mention that it was a FIRST CLASS ticket?

I hesitated briefly, and then I solved his problem.

Of course, he was thrilled. First class travel. No baggage fees. Lounge access. What’s not to like? As far as he was concerned, the only downside  was that it was too early in the day to take advantage of the free Sierra Nevada on tap.

I, on the other hand, was torn.  What had happened to my master plan?  When did I lose what I thought was my steely resolve to let my chicks suffer the consequences of their actions?

My only excuse is that it’s so hard to let them go that I’ll do anything, including being a bad parent, to take care of them just a little bit more.

Go on, be honest. Was that a giant parenting FAIL?

Airport Wars

Shoes: Do you mind if I take Henry to the airport?

Boots: You don’t have to, sweetie. I’ll take him.

Shoes: Actually, I want to take him.

Boots: It’s Friday. There’s traffic. Holiday drunkenness. It’ll be a nightmare.

Shoes: I’m taking him!

Boots: Fine! We’ll take him together.

Shoes: Do you really want to be those parents?

Boots: No. But why should you get to take him?

Shoes: Because I’m the Mom.

Boots: Boom.


Merry Christmas!

We hope you’re having as much fun with the ones you love as we are..

We’ll be back after the chicks fly the coop again.

In the meantime, merry…happy…joyous!

Wouldn’t it be nice?

Two of our chicks are in the same city. One flies home today, the other Friday.

Brief pause while I cheer…HOORAY!

Text exchange with the one who’s coming home Friday.


Chick: Will you make him (his brother) take my gear and check it on the plane today so I don’t have to?

Me: No.

Chick: Irritating. Why not?

Me: Why?

Chick: Because I dont want to carry it across town and then through the airport.

Me: And he should…why?

Chick: To be nice.

Me: Oh, that. Don’t think I can help you there.

Chick: Well making him do it would be nice of YOU.

Birthday boy (part deux)

Quinn, actually three...

If you read Sam’s birthday memory, you’ll know that when Quinny was small, he couldn’t make the “th” sound.  So, “three” always sounded like “free.”

We never mentioned it to him.  In fact, until I was following him up a jungle path one spring afternoon, I had no idea that he knew anything was amiss.

But as we trekked up from Secret Beach, I overheard him quietly repeating to himself the single phrase. “I’m three.”

Only he said it like this:  “I’m threee.  I’m THHreee. I’m THHHHREEE!!!”

He was, in fact, four.

But he had just then figured out, with pride and joy, how to say “three”.

There is something almost unbearably sweet about this memory for me. Something about that little four-year-old, all by himself, recognizing and working a problem.  And something about me getting so lucky that I got to be there, listening in, when he solved it.

Happy Birthday, Quinny. You’re my pride and joy.

Birthday boy…

Quinn and Sam

Nineteen years ago my son, Quinn, toddled up to me and said, “I’m free, Daddy.”

I was amazed that he was so politically aware at such a young age, so I launched into a short speech that I thought would provide relevant information for his run at the White House. “That’s right, Q-ball, you ARE free because you live in a democratic society where all men are equal under the law and able to pursue…”

I blathered on for a good couple of minutes, citing various storied parchments.

When I finished it wasn’t exactly a blank stare that came back at me. His big blue eyes seemed to say “That was interesting, but a little off topic.” Steering the conversation back on course he said…

“And next year I’ll be four!”

Well, my sweet son, next year is here.

Happy 22nd birthday.

I’m sorry…Not.

So I was annoyed at one of my chicks the other day. We went back and forth via text.


Me: Where is the card?

Chick: Left it in the top 2 drawers.  Actually didn’t take it this time. (Notice that he says he left it in not one, but 2, drawers? Neat trick.)

Me: It’s not with the other cards.

Chick: Well, it’s there somewhere.

After this there ensued a span of time in which the card was diligently searched for and found, in one of the drawers, it is true, but hidden under something.

Me: Found it.

Chick: My b.


So my question is: does that count as an apology?

I’m getting the feeling that all this texting is something of a cheat – a way for us to avoid the sticky emotional wickets.

I think I’ll call next time.

But he probably won’t pick up.

It Ain’t About Us…


BOOTS: Quinn called while you were out.

SHOES: What’d he say?

BOOTS: Nothing.

SHOES: Let’s review. You picked up the phone. You said, “Hello.” And then…

BOOTS: Okay. Okay. He said he was looking forward to coming home for the holidays.

SHOES: That is SO sweet!

BOOTS: Actually, his exact words were “I can’t wait to see the dog.”

SHOES: I should’ve stuck with “nothing”.

BOOTS: Always the safer option.