Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Lydia's Mini-Surrender Questions

Lydia here. First of all Kate, thank you for writing The Mini-Surrender. As you know, I'm a fashion train-wreck. For me, a clean face and brushed teeth makes everything better. I like rules and lists and being good at things, so this was all very helpful. But... I have some questions.

Honey, you're not a train wreck, just an occasional derailment. No trauma or injuries, just the sad sigh of a population who knows their fashion commute is gonna be a little bit longer ;-)

I've provided my answers in blue below your very astute and mostly legitimate questions. And, for the sake of impartiality, I'm introducing Dorothy, who in the world of MommyLand, is Surrender Immune. Seriously. She's currently wearing a headband, and I seem to be OK with that. And, she never - NEVER - wears makeup, unless subjected to the freakish demands of a deranged bride. And which point, her McLovin told her she looked like a French Whore. And emerged unscathed, that's how much she agreed with him. Her rebuttals, and final judgments, are in red.

1. Showering. In a given week - I'm usually five for seven. But you see, my ability to shower is predicated on the baby's cooperation. She is now at the stage where containment is difficult. She's like a blond howler monkey - excelling at both climbing and screaming. So showering is possible only when she's asleep or when there's another adult in the house. I could wake up at 5:30am (like you), but I average about 4 hours of sleep per night and I crave sleep like Tiger Woods craves punjana. I am just not sacrificing any of my precious, precious sleep.

So sometimes I can sneak in a shower during the day and other times it's only at night - before I go to "sleep" (those were sarcastic air quotes). So, here's my question - what if the only shower you can get is the night before - is that an automatic surrender for the next day? Because of the sleep dirt?

Showering the night before -- totally acceptable. AS LONG AS you anticipate and deal with the ONE item that will throw you into IMMEDIATE SURRENDER, no matter if you look like Betty Draper everywhere else. And that is Wet Bedhead. There is Bedhead and then there is slept-on-wet-hair Wet BedHead. And there is nothing that saves this. Your hair - short, long, straight, curly - is all kinds of whack and that situation has to be handled. Now, I know I'm going to get an avalanche of comments from moms -- specifically my sister -- who say "I go to bed with wet hair and it looks ah-may-zing the next day." Really? By doing nothing?? And, sis, don't deny're shoving your head under the sink EVERY MORNING to deal with the cra-zay-ziness that is erupting from your skull. You may be 6-foot 73 and thin and perfect and have legs up to your armpits, but your hair? First thing in the morning? Whack. Shut up. It's whack.

Why is it worth taking a shower if you can't be bothered to dry your hair before you put your wet head on your pillow? Hey, way to grow mold. Absolutely, showering the night before is NOT a surrender, just please, for the sake of science, and the love of God, man, dry your hair.

2. Shaving. Shaving requires that you have more than 3 minutes in which to shower. Shaving requires that every single shower you take is not a contender for the fastest shower in history because you are probably leaving your children unsupervised, having chosen personal hygiene over their personal safety. My question: I now like to wear black opaque tights once or twice a week (your influence). That's OK, right? Even if shaving was a day or two before. Because you can't really tell - right?

Right. It's OK. I can't tell...just don't wanna see it. Don't wanna hear about it. Definitely don't want to know how you haven't shaved since August. But you have, right? Shaved since August? Please??

Or, you're not a hippie or European.

3. Sober/Hung-Over. My general rule is no drinky-drinky until the kids are sleepy-sleepy. Just because mine are still little and potentially dangerous (see Terror Attack) so I need to be on my toes. Unless it's an emergency. Since Snowmaggedon - I have broken the rule twice. I feel quite proud of that - as if it represents enormous restraint on my part. I don't have a question. I think you handled this one really well.

Sippy cups, and, as your kids get older, sports bottles, aren't just for benign beverages. Don't judge. I'm the final word here dammit. Nothing beats a fine wine spritzer sucked through the twirly bends of a crazy straw.

4. Headbands. Why are you such a hater? I don't wear them very often. Except when tidying up the house and I see one of Thumbelina's pink and green ones with a large sequined kitten attached to it, pop it on my head to hold back my wonky bangs while tidying, then forget about it and leave the house with it still on to run errands and don't realize it's still on, til someone points it out like three hours later. But that's not on purpose. Which brings up the concept of the "accidental surrender". Can you get a pass (or two) if your surrender is by accident?

Where are your mirrors? By the front door? No? Then what about your car? Rear view mirrors can also serve as eyebrow/bang mirrors. Hey, if your wonky bangs are missing in that mirror, assume you have on kitty headband. Remove. Promptly.
You saw fit to bring up the fact that I recycle headbands from the sleeves of old t-shirts. Yes. Because unlike you, I love the earth and recycling. Also, because just yesterday I saw stretchy fabric headbands for sale at Target. So they must be OK because some people pay for them and mine were free. I have a couple of pictures below that illustrate the many ways these awesome headbands can be utilized. So... I am clearly awesome. I'm waiting for your apology.

Please note: I am gazing fondly at a greeting card/poster of Edward and Jacob that Kate sent me for Valentine's Day. Is she awesome or what?!

I'm sorry -- that your sweet huge orange dog has run off to live with sane people. Do you notice that Woody seems more pleased to be muzzled by your "headband" rather than when he's wearing it like a headband??? Poor dog. You know I love love love your new hair, and that I'm all about you in this color blue, but fortheloveofPete, you've stretched that thing more than Mrs. Dugger's hoohah. Love the Earth, Lydia. Recycle this band right into the trash...and do it quick before every mom I run into starts wearing a Mommy-Power Wristband. They may as well be 'Suck It, Fancy' Wristbands. Which, actually could be profitable...hmmm.

Maybe we can market them with the words LiveSTRONG and Suck It?

As for the headbands, regulations are required. Nothing with a child's character -- Hello Kitty, Power Rangers -- [Editorial Note: Power Rangers?? On a girl's headband?] Pink Power Rangers. [glares at Kate] When one is in need of root a touch-up, we'd prefer a headband to the lovely bi-color situation you have going on. And, a FOREVER HEADBAND SURRENDER PASS to every mom who shreds, burns and napalms the ashes of any scrunchy. Because, those are just not OK.

5. Sunglasses. Is it a surrender if you always wear your sunglasses on top of your head -- like a headband??

In a word? Yes.

Unless you have a migraine. Like I'm suddenly getting. From the two of you. Then you can do whatever you damn well please with your sunglasses. And blame the two of you.

6. Mascara. I totally agree with everything you wrote. I have no questions.

7. Lipgloss. I think you hit the nail on the head about teeth and breath having to match the non-gloppy lipgloss. It's really about your whole mouth - right? But here's my question: are there some colors that should be avoided? Because every once in a while I see a mommy out somewhere with super-sparkly, purple lips that look like they should be on the 15 yr-old behind the counter at Dairy Queen. And I think to myself - maybe a mommy in a mini-van should pass on the purple-glitter-lipgloss. But I don't want to be judgey. Because I'll probably be unshowered in yoga pants and a sweatshirt.

Purple? Glitter? Lipgloss? Good Lord. You may as well put your makeup on via slingshot.

Makeup purchased at real store. Fine. Purchased at Dollar Store or found in daughter's Libby Lu Goody Bag. [Editorial Note: Goody Bag - gack. - Kate] Do I really need to go further?

8. Top Half. Always wear a bra. Got it. If I plan on working out - sometimes I wear two. Thanks for the coffee-spilling shout-out. You're really nice not to make latte-spillage an auto-surrender. *hug*

The day I outlaw latte-spillage is the day my Starbucks Grande Decaf Cinnamon Dolce de Leche ends up down the front of my shirt on my way to a job interview. There is no coming back from, "yes, it's coffee...on my, about the position..."

Agreed. No one needs to see that. And really, some of you can poke a child's eye out with those things. Safety first, girls. Oh, but what I would give to see Kate all Boobs A-Coffee. Almost worth spilling it on her myself, were it not for the whole third degree burn thing.

9. Bottom Half. No holes. Check. Too small is bad. Check. But a pouch? Hmmm... Here's my question: I have a sweatshirt (technically - it belongs to the Cap'n) that is ginormous and cozy and hoody and has a pocket in the front that is just a wee bit marsupial-like. Is it OK? Please say yes. I love that sweatshirt so much.

A question: Can you fit Mini Mini Me into the pouch? If so, then your beloved sweatshirt becomes utilitarian and gives you free hands. If not -- and let's not kid ourselves, Mini Mini Me would lose. her. mind. in that thing -- then you do with your sweatshirt the same thing you do with everything else that is ginormous and cozy. Like a sofa. Like Woody. You leave it in your house.

[drinking wine and nodding a la Alistair Cooke...]

10. Sneakers. Got it. Sneakers have rules and if you follow the rules, they're fine. My question: WHAT ABOUT CLOGS???

Girl, please.

Do I spy a Tulip Festival? Are you in RiverDance? Then you have your answer. But I also love that this rankles Kate, so, when worn purely to aggravate her, go forth and clog. Just make sure your MommyLand Power Wristband matches.

Didja know if we open more wine, we get even funnier?

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