Friday, November 17, 2023

7 Quick Takes about Things You Don't Want to Do On Your Day Off, Existential Thoughts at the Town Dump, and Something About Wedgies

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


On Saturday morning, my 9-year-old assembled his new-to-us bedframe with his dad. 

Phillip would fit together the pieces and then send him in to tighten the screws, which worked out brilliantly because it made the 9-year-old feel important and kept Phillip from contorting into this position on the floor:

A symbiotic relationship.

At first my 9-year-old hesitated to get under the bed and asked nervously, "Is this stable?"

Phillip assured him that it was, and the kid responded, "Good, because if it fell on my neck I'd be dead, and I don't wanna die at the age of nine ON A WEEKEND."


I opened an email from my kids' school that began: "It has come to our attention that we may have inadvertently offended members of our school community by including Wacky Hair Day in our spirit week schedule."

If this was 5 or 10 years ago I would have assumed it was because of a bald kid who couldn't participate, but being 2023, I figured it was racial and a quick Google search confirmed that some schools have stopped doing it out of concern about white students representing black students' everyday hairstyles as "wacky." 

I see where they're coming from, I do. But wouldn't it be better to maybe explain how to be unoffensive with your choice of hairstyle instead of just cancelling it altogether for everyone?

The school's email went on to say, "In keeping with our commitment for diversity, equity and inclusion, we have decided to change the theme to Wacky Hat Day." (Which will be cancelled faster than you can say "diversity, equity, and inclusion" after someone with a hijab or yarmulke is complimented for their "wacky hat" during spirit week.)

Oh, well. The point of kids going to school is learning math and their ABCs, not wearing a ponytail spilling through a soda bottle on top of their head so I guess nothing is really lost, but it's a shame that a fun day was cancelled when I think there were other ways to deal with it.


There's a place at our town dump called the swap shop, where anyone can put anything that's still useful, and you can take whatever you want as well. Once a week, they cart away whatever's left to the landfill.

On Tuesday I saw a hearse parked outside the swap shop, which I do not want to know too much about.

But that's not why I started writing this Take. I'm writing it because inside the swap shop was this styrofoam cooler of memories:

Full of antique framed black-and-white family portraits, wedding photos, and a lady with her baby.

One day in actual history, these people dressed up in their Sunday best and traveled to a photographer at a time when taking your picture was neither easy nor cheap. It was obviously important to them. It's so weird to think that the kids in that photo are deceased now, and their family portrait is in the town dump, and no one remembers who they are. And now some weird 41-year-old lady is looking at their pictures and feeling sad that they're going to be tossed and the universe keeps rolling on indifferent to our mortality and is this what a midlife crisis is??

Thank goodness for my faith in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints that gives me perspective and context for all of (*gestures around at everything*) this, or I might get seriously bent out of shape.


I really only go clothes shopping when my children grow out of theirs and we don't have enough hand-me-downs to cover them for the next season. With such infrequent trips, I feel like the styles change a lot from one trip to the next, so every time I learn something new.

Apparently there's a style of jean now called "Wedgie"? I'm confused, please help.

At first I thought that maybe Gen Z just doesn't know, maybe people under a certain age don't associate the word "wedgie" with unpopular kids getting the waistbands of their underwear pulled up over their heads, but I looked it up and according to the wedgie jean has a "flattering high-rise and a butt-lifting effect." 

So they know exactly what they're doing. 

Remember low-rise jeans from the 90s? They were hideous but given a respectable-sounding name to hide it. They weren't called "Muffin Top Fit" or "Plumber's Crack Jeans" even though they could have been, because that would've been gross. Fashion execs, take note. Use a little decorum.


In my 12-year-old's social studies class, there's a project where you can bring in a loaf of bread that you baked. I'm unclear on what the connection is; they're learning about complex societies and complex societies... make bread? But regardless of the practical application, she's very happy, because she LOVES to bake.

She's the kid who, at age 6, would get up early on a Saturday to make pancakes from scratch for the whole family by herself. She obviously gets this from her dad, because I didn't know how to make boxed mac and cheese until I was 20.

I asked if she wanted to use my standard bread recipe (I can now make homemade bread and boxed mac and cheese) but she said she'd like it to be "special." 

So she independently found a recipe for challah bread, made sure we had the ingredients, and set aside basically an entire afternoon since the thing needed to rise three times. She followed all the instructions by herself (although she did call to consult me twice on a step she wasn't sure about), and when I came home from an errand she was watching a YouTube video on how to braid the dough.

Here's the finished result:

Pretty good for her first try, huh?


I've been thinking lately that I need to follow more smart people on YouTube. Phillip's feed includes a lot of "did you know?" type channels, but the YouTube algorithm decided I'm not nearly that intellectual and instead shows me a 50/50 mix of sketch comedy and cute babies. 

But because the Internet is a scary place that somehow reads your mind and shows you the exact thing you were thinking of but didn't tell a soul, this YouTuber started showing up in my feed and he is exactly what I needed:


So now do I feel smarter? A little. But in reality, YouTube and I both know that I'm actually this guy:

Although probably less charismatic.

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Unknown said...

I felt exactly the same way. Ive been looking through reams of pictures finding stuff for Dad's bday book so the topic is near to my heart.
9yr old bed comment funny. And I want some of that bread!!

Jenny (sister not author) said...

That bread! Grandma was a great cook too. I think Phillip and Megan are who got the majority of that passed on.

That TED talk was too funny!!!

Lux G. said...

Yum that bread. And your 9 year old assembling the bed is just awesome.