Friday, January 25, 2008


I have a handful of friends. Strange, but true. There are four people in this world, other than my family, who might just show up to help me out in an emergency, regardless of time or distance. I, too, would do the same for them.

However, in general, I just don't like people. Even my friends. Friends will always call you at the worst possible moment and will be impossible to get off the phone. Friends will make you late. Friends never take good advice. Etc.

This morning, one of my few friends asked me if I would follow her to the auto-shop and then take her to run a "short errand." I informed said friend that I had to pick up Son #1, The Starving Child, and take him to an opthmology appointment by 10:45 am and that it would take me 30 minutes to get there, requiring my appearance at school by 10:10 at the latest.

"No problem!" said my friend, "We'll take the car first thing and the errand is just some quick grocery shopping."

Reluctantly, as I've experienced this many times, I said, "Okay. Be at my house by 8:15."

At 8:20, the phone rang. I knew who it was.

Indeed, it was my friend, telling me she was just passing our kids' school and would be at my house within 10 minutes. I hung up and sighed.

We took her van to the shop without incident, though she seemed always to be in the lane that ended at the next intersection. This was confusing, since she's lived here for years. At any rate, the van was dropped off by 9am.

I loaded her twin 2-year-olds into the van's built-in car seats, she got in, and we tooled away.

"Where do you need to go?" I asked, expecting her to tell me a location nearby the auto shop.

"Oh, you know where XXX is," she said, naming a local grocery store at least 10 miles away, "I just need to pick up some chicken soup and Gatorade for (daughter) and (husband), who are home sick."

Again, I sighed. As I reminded her that I needed to be AT the school by 10:10am, one of the twins began to cry.

"Poor sweetie," I said, "What's wrong?"

"Oh, he's just getting over this stuff that we've all had," replied my friend, "and (twin #2) is just now starting to get it. Do you have any tissues?"

I mentally reminded myself to buy more hand santizer, since I would obviously be using all the stuff I had in my bag during this trip. Handing her the tissue box, I turned onto the street where XXX grocery store was - only 8 more miles.

At 9:25, we pulled in and parked. I took (twin #1) and crammed him into the seat of a cart, while she did the same with (twin #2). She pulled out her list.

"I only have a couple of food items, but can we just go through the mens' department, the kids' department, the automotive department, and photo/frame department, and the craft department?" she asked.

I said, "Well, we have about 15 minutes to get everything and get out of here."

"No problem," she said.

At the grocery store, my friend first purchased both twins a package of Cinnabon "twisty thingies." These were broken into small pieces and strewn on the floor throughout the store. I tried to pick them up as I saw them fall, but gave up after a while. Later, as we headed for the checkstands, me with a somewhat desperate look on my face and my friend apologizing over and over, she bought all three of them chocolate donuts.

"Be sure you eat them quickly, boys," she said, "we can't eat in Maleficent's car!"

Even if I did allow eating in my car, I would have to say I didn't to my friend, simply because I've seen the inside of HER car.

I kept the boys entertained while she checked out, trying to keep them from spitting and coughing on me, and liberally applying sanitizer.

You know the rest of the story. I was 20 minutes late picking up The Starving Child, and by recklessly speeding, I was only 5 minutes late for his appointment, but was unable to feed him on the way as I had intended due to his having missed lunch for the appointment.

As I loaded The Starving Child into the van, I noticed chocolate donut crumbs all over the backseat of the van.

I hate people.

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