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Wednesday, April 20, 2005

At times, not the brightest bulb

It goes without saying that I simply adore my boys. I mean I'm crazy about these guys. They make me laugh harder than anyone else and their little-boy worldview touches my soul.

But I swear to God there are moments when I wonder where they left their brains. For the past hour and a half I've been tracking down my two older boys because they were determined to ride their bikes to school today, regardless of the forecast for afternoon thunderstorms.

Now normally, I don't mind a little rain. After all, there's nothing like swishing through puddles in your bare feet after a summer rain. But this was a bit more.

Patrick and his friend Joe managed to get home in the nick of time. I feel somewhat responsible for the Banks boys this week because my friend and neighbor, Patty, has been in Dallas for two weeks training for her new job.

When the thunder and lightning started, I grabbed my car keys in search of
Ryan and Nick. As I was leaving, Joe and Patrick started outside.

"What are you two doing?" I asked, with my arms outstretched in their very best "Would someone Pull-eeze give me a break?" gesture.

"Uh, going outside?"

"Uh, no!" I snapped.

"Can we at least play in the garage?" You have to know these two. At age 10, they are both the middle of three boys. Although I find them probably the most creative of our collective six sons, they are also known for getting into things like spray paint and staple guns.

"Don't get into anything. I'll be right back," I said.

As the rain came down in buckets I realized I was still in my work clothes (as in dress slacks, heels and blouse) and I would likely have to figure out a way to muscle two large bikes into the back of my van.

Ryan and Nick attend Bay Middle School. It's on Wolf Road, a main east-west thoroughfare in the thriving metropolis that is Bay Village. Rarely, however, do they take the straight way home. That would be too obvious. As I headed toward the middle school I had to think like a 12-yar-old boy. "Where would I go in case of rain?"

Their bikes weren't at Martin's Deli so that meant they didn't get far from school. My next stop was at their friend, Connor's house. Sure enough, there was a rack of bikes in Connor's garage.

When I get to the door I kindly asked if my darling son and neighbor were there. Ryan nonchalantly came to the door.

"Hey mom. What's up? How'd you know I was here?" (I love that he can be so completely unruffled by my sudden appearance at his buddy's house.) Well it certainly isn't because he called to say he was safely under cover!!

It seems that young Nick thought enough to call his very concerned Grandma and tell her he was safe. When I drilled Ryan he said, "I didn't know if you'd be home."

First, I'm nearly always home when they get home from school. Second, I have this handy little contraption known as a cell phone, that he frequently uses to share stentorian belches for my amusement (or lack of).

So with a break in the weather, I urge them to high-tail their little heinies home before the skies open up. By the time I pulled into the garage, to find Patrick and Joe disassembling Patrick's old bike, it was raining buckets.

Ryan came up to my office in nothing but his boxers, completely soaked and did his best, "Look at me!"

Told him to hit the showers. And so now it's 4:30 and I've not gotten much done this afternoon. And I'm choking on the scent of Ryan's deodorant spray. YUK! Guess it's better than the alternative. So when they all ask me why I have to finish work at night, I'll just pull up this post by way of explanation. Because now I have to jump back in the car and pick up young Michael from after-school care.


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