disapproving kitty

Friday, July 15, 2011

Ribs on the Sidewalk Incident -- Part 3

  On our way out we went past another playground, and believe it or not, the kids wanted to play on it.  Now, the adults in our little merry band had not eaten, were hot, dusty and sticky and wanted something cold to drink.   I knew this.  But I was determined that this was not a bad idea to take my kids here and in my deranged, hungry brain, I knew that the way to prove this was to allow them to play on the super-overcrowded playground.  Again.  

     I watched DD like a hawk.  This time, she did do her usual routine.  Larger kids and teens kept pushing her around, nearly kicking and stomping on her, with me using my best teacher-voice to tell them to cut it out.  C loitered at the edge, feeling a bit like the strange-single-man-hanging-out-inappropriately-at-a-playground.  Eventually it was time to go, and the kids did NOT want to leave.

    We had to drag them away as they thrashed and screamed.  I was hungry and tired and now feeling very bad for doing this, and for J not having found anything to eat, (and C, too, for that matter) and just wanting to get the hell out of there.  J was famished by this point, but trying his best not to show it.  I could tell, though.  It is really bad for him to get overly hungry, and I know this, and I felt like it was my fault, which made it worse.  Suggesting stopping to get him something to eat, or asking why he didn't get himself pizza earlier didn't help.  He just wanted to get the kids out of there, us into the car and himself back to Origins.   I was getting desperate at this point, wanting to get him some food, something he'd like, to help make up for bungling this whole thing from the start.

     We left C at Comfest, where he could wander off and enjoy its delights sans increasingly deranged parents and cranky kids.  J and I headed back towards the Convention Center and the car.  As we passed the last of the food stalls, I tried to figure out a way to insist that we stop and get some food but didn't manage it with the kids being absolutely "done" with everything and us wanting to get away from the crowds as quickly as possible.  DS and SS were throwing monumental tantrums.  I was very close to being completely out of my mind.

     Then I saw it.  Food!  Right there on the sidewalk!  Right next to the Convention Center was a table, covered with barbecued ribs, chicken, macaroni salad, a few other side dishes and cake!  Right there for the taking!  A man noticed my interest and said it was leftover from an awards banquet they'd just had, and we could have as much as we wanted for $5.  What a bargain!  I turned to J in absolute excitement -- here was food for him and this would save the day.  He could get a plate of this delicious sidewalk food of indeterminate quality and age from a complete stranger, eat it as we walked to the car and all would be well!  I was already digging in my wallet when J's voice penetrated my haze of deranged happiness.  He was saying that he really wanted to keep going, he only had twenties, he just wanted to get the kids to the car first.... I couldn't believe my ears.  He didn't want this?  He can get kind of unreasonable when he's hungry, was that it?  I even started to get a little angry with him.  Hmph.

     As we walked away I expressed my total bafflement at this ungracious refusal of what was clearly a perfectly good meal.  With what must have been an enormous expenditure of patience on his part, he explained to me like one would tell a small child or someone in a straitjacket that he didn't actually like barbecued anything, or macaroni salad and was most certainly not going to eat something sitting on a table outside the Convention Center that had been there for god only knows how long.

     Oh.  I, um, hadn't thought of that.  I was monumentally embarrassed, but all I could think of to say was, "I didn't know you didn't like macaroni salad."

     Once I got home, and everyone was cleaned up and in bed, it finally dawned on me how utterly ridiculous it all was.  I called J and discovered that he'd gotten a Bratwurst from Schmidt's, which is what he'd wanted all along -- but never said.  I guess I wasn't the only one not communicating well.

    I'd love to be able to pin this on him in some fashion, but I really can't.  It was all me, and a monumental fail on my part.  It's okay though.  If you're going to completely humiliate yourself, the best you can do is do it in front of someone you love.   

1 comment:

  1. This whole time, I figured you were going somewhere like: finally got something to eat from a street vendor (ribs) and before anyone could take a bite, the container got knocked over and they all landed on the sidewalk.