Feb 17, 2009


If you are, I suggest the following adventure. It's sure to spice up your life.

First, discover in the process of tax filing that your van registration is missing. Search both cars, all your files, the dark recesses of your brain, and your pride...but come up empty-handed. Wait three days until the first opportunity to rectify the {illegal} situation.

Instead of giving up a nap for your baby and yourself, wait until after school is out to visit the in-the-mall branch of the Department of Revenue.

Take a number. Notice that said number indicates you're 97th in line.

As you find your seats, make mental notes of all the food and activities you should have brought with you to entertain three children (but didn't).

Feel relieved when you see tiny little tables that will work well for first-grade homework.

Ten minutes later, make a trip back to the car in ridiculous, howling wind and while dodging irresponsible mall drivers to retrieve homework instructions, crayons and coloring books, the diaper bag, and snacks.

Return to tiny table and set up camp.

Be sure to bring along a small child who whines "eee-eee-eee-eee" at the top of his lungs because he's confined to the stroller.

Wear your very ugliest painting t-shirt (concealed by a frumpy hoodie) so that when this adventure cranks up your internal thermostat, you'll be forced to either bask in your own heat or risk being arrested by the fashion police.

If you're really lucky, a giant couple who smells like they haven't bathed in six weeks will sit on one side of you, and on the other side, a chain smoker. Adventures in smelling will be especially awesome if you're pregnant. Or an aromatically-sensitive child who likes to make loud comments.

After waiting for an hour, take a frantic walk through the mall to find a bathroom for a preschooler. Be sure to let him run ahead so you can be an obnoxious yeller and lose him to the tomb of The Men's Restroom. Don't worry when he takes twenty minutes and comes out crying.

Run back to the Department of Revenue so the nice people in uniforms don't lock you out at closing time. Pull out an "idiot" stamp for your forehead when you walk back in and see a bathroom tucked in the corner of the office.

Make your baby scream as loud as possible and dare you to entertain him. Resist the urge to let him out of the stroller; you know it'll make him happy but also turn the place into a circus.

Ninety minutes after arrival, pack up your belongings; your number is coming up.

Give two dollars and twenty cents, along with your stupid story, to the nice lady behind the counter. After collecting your papers and change, make an off-handed comment about tax filing being the red flag you needed to replace documents that have been missing for who-knows-how-long. Feel grateful when she gets up again and prints the form you actually need for doing taxes.

Shuttle kids back into coats, through the hurricane parking lot, and back into the car.

Get gas on the way home just to make the squawking children mad.

And do all of this just so that you'll be prepared the next time you get pulled over for speeding.

"License and registration, please."

"Here you go, officer."

Can't wait.
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