Friday, March 12, 2021

7 Quick Takes about Strange Names for Inanimate Objects, A Comprehensive Assortment of Books, and Speaking to the Manager

It's 7 Quick Takes Friday! How was your week?


Hello from this ridiculous pen my first grader brought home from school!

My kids, being even more ridiculous than the pen, named it Dennis. 


We have had some beautiful weather this week! I told you spring was coming. 

I loaded the 4- and 6-year-old into the car to take them to the park, but I already had a headache from how loud they were being and we hadn't even left the garage yet.

So I told them, "You two need to be quiet if you want to go to the park. If anyone makes a sound before we get out of the driveway, I will stop the car and that person will stay here at home with Dad instead."

Immediately, the 4-year-old answered "Okay" and his brother yelled at him "You just made a sound!"

They made it .5 seconds, you guys.


Even though they'd both technically disqualified themselves, we still went ahead with the outing to the park because they'd made me laugh. We met a friend there and she and I ended up talking about how different it was raising boys than girls.

Now, I know every kid is different. I also know that boys need to know how to sew and girls need to know how to use power tools. I'm not saying otherwise. 

But seriously, they're just different. Girls giggle and scream when they're excited; boys give each other concussions and punch a hole through the wall. They're just way more physical and destructive, in my experience.

And just as my friend and I are talking about this, out of the corner of my eye I catch my son with a chunk of concrete the size of a bocce ball raised over his head, about to heave it over the playground fence.

Do you see what I'm talking about?


Our family usually has a truckload of books on hold at the library, and once a week I go pick up the stack. 

Yesterday, I made a special midweek trip because a history book my high schooler needed ASAP had come in, so there were only three books waiting for us. The titles were Dog ManThe Enchanted Charms, and Hitler.

An eclectic selection.

I can only imagine what the librarians were thinking as they checked these out for us.


I've heard that our school district is trying to get more kids back in the classroom full-time, but for now I'm enjoying having them learning from home three days a week while I can.

My 14-year-old is taking a photography class, and she's been asking the 4-year-old to help her with her assignments. Sometimes he's the subject of her photos; other times he helps her pose different objects in the frame.

It's no fun staring at a computer screen for 7 hours and only interacting periodically with your classmates' disembodied heads over Google Meets, so for the kids' sake I can't wait for a full return to school. But I'll miss watching my 4-year-old be his sister's assistant photographer.


As a parent who's big on kids developing as much independence as possible, I've worried about the semi-lockdown situation we've been in for the last year.  Is the rising generation going to be like housecats who don't know what to do when they get outside?

Which is why, after learning that a major art museum near us recently reopened, I suggested that my 14- and 16-year-olds plan a trip there. They could could take the subway and make a day out of enjoying the art and getting some lunch in the city, just the two of them.

The online system wasn't letting us buy youth tickets without an adult ticket, so I emailed to ask about it and was told the museum policy didn't allow visitors under 18 without adult supervision.

Well, if that didn't make me livid.  

So to clarify, a teenager old enough to drive herself to the museum is still not old enough to walk around inside?? For crying out loud, if you want kids who can't handle independent life after high school then not allowing them to do anything without a babysitter until their 18th birthday seems like a great way to do it!


What I did next, in the words of my 16-year-old, was "assume my ultimate Karen form" and spit out an adrenaline-fueled email explaining why I thought the policy made no sense and how I hoped the museum would reconsider it.

I asked that my concerns be forwarded to the appropriate department, but truthfully I didn't have high hopes. I assumed whoever read it would just make a rude gesture at the computer, hit 'delete,' and that would be that.

Who would've guessed that a few days later, I'd wake up to an email saying that they'd reviewed the policy with the director of visitor services and had decided to lower the minimum age for unaccompanied visitors to 12?

Never in a million years did I expect a response, letalone that one. 

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Anonymous said...

Mom vs. The Museum and the victory is yours!?!?! Well done, that's heartening.
I am often baffled at how my kids are not allowed to do things on their own in the world. At the library I make my kids go ask the librarian for help finding whatever books they want, and once overheard the librarian telling my kid he needed to go get his mom. He's five and he wants a book about dinosaurs. I'm not a librarian and I don't know where those books are and is there are better or safer place for a kid to learn to do things than asking a children's librarian for help finding a book?!

Unknown said...

I'd say to Anonymous above (also my name since I've never figured out how to comment with a user name) that was not a very good librarian! Bravo for appropriate Karening. Which museum was it?

Diana Dye said...

Say what you will about Karening--it works.

I know my librarians think we have varied interests. I always wonder what the teen checker at my local grocery store thinks when I only buy $40 in produce and $20 in Easter candy.

Chaun said...

Wow!! Way to stick up for your kids and win the victory! I hope your girls had a great time at the museum!

Jenny Evans said...

Diana: I assure you, they probably don't think anything of it. My two teenagers are grocery store cashiers and you should hear the weird stuff they tell me people bought every day!