Monday, April 30, 2012

Suburbs of Our Discontent

"I'll do, I'll do, and I'll do."
(Witch #1: Macbeth 1.3.10)

I've had two separate encounters with sixth-grade parents this past week where I've been asked what my daughter does.  And I don't mean, "What does Annabel do when she has a question about her homework?" or "What does Annabel do for fun?"  I mean, "What does she Do?" Like what's her job, her specialty, her thing. Now, both of these parents have bi-lingual kids who are nationally-ranked athletes, so they have things. Big things. My question is: Since when did kids become so professional? Remember when we all felt sorry for Brooke Shields for having a pushy stage mom? And when child pro-athletes were from scary communist countries?

My daughter goes to sixth grade and survives being 12. That's what she does. Oh, and she plays on the computer and sings Taylor Swift songs. Those are her things.

When I was 12, I went to school, and then I came home and watched as much TV as I could and tried to sit in the "special spot" before one of my siblings got it. That's what I did. And I turned out fine. I also have an impressive cache of popular culture references from the 1970s that I can pull out whenever I want.

Can your kid do that?


  1. No, but I can. My husband has commented on my impressive ability to name anyone who has ever been on Fantasy Island, a talent I am unaccountably unable to monetize. (I am aware that monetize is not a word. My insistence on this is probably why I am unable to monetize things.)

    I am pretty sure the reason my daughter didn't get into Hunter Elementary was because I was a tiny bit snarky about the part of the application that asked about her interests and talents. SHE WAS THREE.

  2. I can do a spot-on imitation of a poodle pushing a shopping cart, and I know The Raven by heart.