Friday, January 04, 2008

One Mother’s Conspiracy Theory

I don’t want to be an alarmist or anything, but our children are plotting to take over the world. Or maybe it’s just my children. Either way, you should be very, very afraid.

Just today they conspired against me in the grocery store. We were there for an hour, and for 45 minutes they were complete angels. And I’ll tell you why. If they behave themselves while I’m grocery shopping, we’ll go down the toy aisle before we hit the register. It’s my rule, and it’s always worked for me. Until today.

Those little devils waited until we were walking away from their reward to turn on me. That’s right. Like one of those game simulations that changes strategy based on your choices, these kids were organized, conspiring, and downright tricky.

I had followed Dr. Phil to the letter. I discovered their “currency” (i.e. toy aisle) and used it to leverage the situation to my advantage, only to be bamboozled in the last 15 minutes of our errand. I tell you—today the grocery story, tomorrow the world.

The real mutiny began at the checkout and didn’t end until we reached the van. One or more of them did each of the following: man-handled the bank displays, took a ride on the merry-go-round that is WalMart’s bag dispenser, shoved a baby bottle pop up their nose, threw up outside the store (three times), tried to ice skate in the parking lot while holding onto the shopping cart (only to upend the cart and run over her baby brother who screamed like his toes had been severed in the process).

Not to get all Chicken-Little on you, but I’ve decided children are conniving and smarter than us. Or maybe they’re just smarter than me. Either way, I am very, very afraid.

How many of your children could hack a computer faster than you could pay your bills online? Or skateboard through the mall before you could pull up your nylons? Or text three chapters of War and Peace before you could figure out how to program your VCR?

So while everyone’s trying to decide who to elect for president, how to go green or establish world peace, I’ll be keepin’ my eyes on the little buggers.

The world, people, I’m warning you.

15 comments:

Karen (Pediascribe) said...

Hmmm.....I'd better keep an eye on my little buggers!

Anonymous said...

Oh my gosh, Shauna! That was so funny. I can so relate to the chaos after the bribe. I'm sorry to say I haven't always been strong enough to then take away said bribe and enforce good behavior because I'm grateful just to get to the car and get home after such outings. And my kids DEFINITELY are smarter than I am. At least they think they are. I predict their genius will last until they have teenagers of their own. lots of love,
M

shauna said...

Mary, this is where they were smarter than me. They had just gotten the bribe (i.e. walking up and down the toy aisle) so I could no longer take it away. At that point I was gunning for the car. All parenting strategy went out the window at that point. *Sigh* I've got to up the ante and improve my game...

Tola said...

the next TWO times, no toy aisle. make up two *pretend* trips to the grocery store this week, so that they get the lesson faster. just a thought.

Carrie Wilson Link said...

All bets are off when they play the throwing up in the parking lot card!

Eileen said...

Hands down, my kids get me almost every single time. I think your on to something really big here Shauna...you have my full support with this theory.
XOXOX

eureka4him said...

LOL! Ah.....brings back such memories. My "kids" are now 24 and 20, the 24-year old with a child of her own.

I still remember the call I got from the school when my son was 7.

"Mrs. King, we have your son down here."
Well, of course you do....he's supposed to be there (Yeah, I know, that wasn't the point, but I had to pull my own cards while I still had them!)
"Your son gave us some major problems today."
Did you ever notice that that kind of comment could be anything from "Your son pulled Susie's hair" to "Your son tried to blow up the school"? Or maybe it was just my son....

Anyway, getting back to my story...
"What did Michael do?" I asked innocently, afraid of what would come next.

"Michael hacked into the school records..."
My 7 year old son! I didn't know whether to high-five him for being such a brain on the computer, or kill him for doing what he clearly knew he shouldn't do.

"We found out when he went up to one of the teachers and told her he knew she was going to be 52 next Tuesday."

*Sigh........Okay.....what do we want to do about this......?"

The good news, the school recovered, Michael continued to daily and sometimes hourly push the envelope to determine what he was allowed to do and what he wasn't allowed to do, and now he's an honor student in college.

Those who test you the most....well, you finish that statement!

Pam

Midwest Mommy said...

Oh my gosh, the merry go round that is walmart's bagging area cracked me up!

Gustogirl said...

It amazes me that any mother survives young children with her sanity intact. Glad you made it home alive, or more importantly your children did, hahaha.

Erin said...

We're screwed!

RachelT said...

haha. JJ is only one and already knows how to get my goat. I am laughing at the vision of your kids riding the Walmart bag dispenser.

shauna said...

Aunt Pam,
What a great story! See--you need a blog yourself! Michael's a bright kid--and I would have been tempted to applaud his braininess as well!

Tola,
Good idea. I've done that with the library before--and ended up banning them for quite a few weeks (there was a brawl in the picture book section).

suburbancorrespondent said...

Have you checked out finslippy today? Might make you feel better. Or maybe not. Those kids are sent here to test us. And we will never win. I've learned that over the past year or so.

Becky said...

I totally missed this post....

boy, oh boy....

they are so smart...aren't they?

I have to admit....I am scared to death to take my 3 all at once. I was going to attempt Costco tomarrow....but now I am having second thoughts.

Alex Elliot said...

I'm still laughing over the merry-go-round! I ventured out to the grocery store with my two boys yesterday and told my older one (the younger one is only 18 months) that if he behaved himself, and I defined behaving, then he could pick out one reasonable item. He proceeded to hopp like a bunny through the grocery store and then told me that hopping like a bunny wasn't in my list of unacceptable behavior.