Then today, Dawn reminded me that I don't always have to be funny, or exciting. Which I am not. Exciting that is. Dawn posted some links of some other people that had written some funny things, like a lady named Twisted Susan that farted in front of a lady in the grocery store. I mean, I do stuff like that
I followed another link of Twisted Susan's called Why is it that nobody in Susan's house can..., and she listed things that no one else in her house seems to be able to do, like put away cereal or feed the dog. After wondering for a minute if Susan and I lived in the same house, I decided to make my own list. My list will be prefaced by something out of a book I read. I cannot remember the name of the book, but it was a collection of essays about parenting by some authors/comedians, and the only one I can remember right now is Dave Barry, but he didn't write this particular essay I'm going to tell you about.
The essay was called something like "A Manual for The Care of Your New Teenage Daughter," clearly aimed at parents of 12 and 13 year-old girls who are wondering what happened to their sweet little girl, and who the screaming banshee is that has taken her place. I have been there, done that twice now, and not looking forward to the third time. But there was one part of the essay that I thought was extremely funny, and it was called "Cleaning Your Teenage Daughter."
I can't remember the thing word for word, so this will be liberally paraphrased, but I think you'll get the point.
It said that teenage girls are very clean. Clean is not the same as neat. They are very clean because they shower three times a day, using expensive soaps and lotions that you must purchase for them, because like I'm sure I'm really going to use the same shampoo that my mom uses. Gross. They then wrap themselves in every available towel in the bathroom, and spend hours moisturizing, putting on make-up and straightening or curling their curly or straight hair. They will then leave the towels strewn about the house. If you expect them to pick up the towels, you are confusing clean with neat. Picking up the towels is your job.
When I read that, I laughed and laughed, and then I laughed some more. Because this is so my 15 year-old daughter. And then I smiled because I realized it wasn't just me that was living through this.
Honestly, things are better. 15 is better than 12-14. I am hoping that like my first daughter, 16 is better than 15. But in the interest of comedy, and those of you who have/have had/will have teenage daughters, I thought I'd make my own list of things that she is unable to do:
- Hang up a towel
- Pick any piece of clothing up off the floor and put it in a laundry basket
- Put the milk away
- Discuss homework without rolling her eyes
- Put bobby pins in a specified container that I bought specifically for that purpose. It's way easier to just take them out of her hair and throw them on the floor.
- Feed her rabbit, which I sort of feel like is my rabbit now.
- Change the rabbit's litter box (although she will completely clean the hutch once in a while, but certainly not when I ask)
- Turn the radio off
- Turn the TV off
- Turn her straightening iron off
- Keep her cell phone from hitting the floor (stole that one from Twisted Susan)
- Speak to a teacher about a grade or an assignment without me threatening to email said teacher
- Eat anything that contains meat, which makes my life
a living hellinteresting.
- Do anything that I request without saying "in a minute" or my favorite, "I WILL!" (stole that one from Susan too)
- Throw away an empty shampoo/conditioner/lotion/face wash bottle
- Clean up the kitchen after she cooks something
- When given money to go to the mall (or anywhere), come home with more than 17 cents in her pocket
Things she is able to do:
- Utter my favorite phrase in the world at least 18 times a day, which is "Oh, I forgot."
- Tell her little sister to shut up at least 27 times between 4pm and 9pm
- Expect me to read her mind when she's out of something. I should just know and accordingly buy more tampons when she's out, so that she will not have to utter the word "tampon" in my presence
- Randomly hug me for no apparent reason
- Make me laugh until I cry
She's crazy, she's silly, she's infuriating. And then, she'll do this: A walk for MS, with a sign on the back of her shirt that said, "My champion is daddy (:". She even brought a friend to walk with us, whose sign said "Shannon's dad (:"
That day, she made me smile. And she made me proud.