As an update I talked to the neighbor yesterday. The first thing she said to me was, "I wasn't being condescending, I was being 'snide'." OK. Pretty close to the same thing. Man, this woman always has to correct me to make herself feel better, I tell ya.
It went well though. I just told her that instead of assuming things that are evil from now on, she needs to just ask me what is going on instead so she can in future make better judgment. I also told her that whenever her daughter is told "no" she always runs off and cries. No real surprise there. She did not put up any defense for herself at all and acted very mature about it. Maybe she just had no defense, so that is where I have the upper hand. Who knows. She said that maybe with a little time things will calm down. I even think she said in a "snide" way that she was sorry this happened or sorry she did that, I am not sure. A million kids were milling around at that point and it was a very distracting time to talk. But at least I got the good meat of what I needed to say to her in the message I left, and then I was able to instruct her for the future, because gee whiz, I can't abide a person assuming things and then acting on that assumption. I told her it was not fair to immediately believe that I am being mean or rude. I am not a mean or rude person and she knows it. So there.
On a side note: I am always borrowing money from my kids when I need change or cash (I always pay them back immediately or pay them interest if I am especially lazy at going to the ATM later). The reason is, they are always taking my money. Whenever I have cash the first thing I think of is paying them their allowance and then I have nothing left. I need to get a job or something.
The Oldest mowed the lawn this weekend and so I doled out an extra two bucks. He also lost a tooth this week (a molar) and left a note to the Tooth Fairy (I know, the kid is eleven. Don't badger me) kindly asking for no less than two bucks.
You see, he is saving for a game cube. And it is driving me bonkers. I mean, at least he saves his money instead of endlessly begging to spend it, but good grief, he is so stingy at times. He always searches for money on the street and stuff and it kind of gets old. I swear, last week we were about to enter Costco and I always forget that I have to pull out my stupid Costco card before we get in there so I was digging through my purse, trying to ply out my wallet. I had two loose dollar bills floating around the various receipts and coupons in my purse just so you know, and lo, once I pull out my wallet, the Oldest yelps into the air, "I whole dollar! On the ground! You never find that!!!!" He was so happy to have found it I almost hated to tell him that one of my loose dollars must have fallen out of my purse.
"It's probably mine," I say. See, even the money that I don't intend to give them ends up in their hands.
"I found it though. Are you sure it is yours?"
"I am pretty sure, but I don't feel like digging through my purse to see if I have a dollar missing. I am not even sure how many loose dollars I had in it. Just keep it, I guess." I suddenly get depressed.
"That's ok. You keep it. It is probably yours," the Oldest mumbles.
"Nah." I wave the dollar from me.
This is Eraser Eater's cue. "I never find dollars on the ground! Ahhhhh!" and he proceeds to whine for an eternity about it in the threshold of Costco.
The Oldest was pushing the cart and I was turning to the whiner and threatening him. "You think that life is fair?" I challenge him.
"Noooooooo, I just NEVER find a whole DOLLAR." He flops around on foot like a fish out of it's tank. (which reminds me, I have to clean that rectangle of sickness.)
My famous line finally comes: "I am done with you!" It really has no consequences to it, I just say it and everyone sort of rolls their eyes like, yeah, yeah, you always say that, mom.
The Oldest is holding his head by leaning on the cart at this point and he keeps saying to Eraser Eater, "Please be quiet. Please stop whining." In the correction department, he is the vice president.
The Oldest has a point where he completely boils and he either does one of two things: He starts yelling like a mad man and Mickey Mouse is angrily slamming doors and stomping around, or he does something stupid:
The boy was overcome with annoyance at this point and his eyes were all bulging out of his head. He looks into the distance at maybe an over-sized pizza, or a grand-sized pack of grapes, and tosses the dollar in the general direction of Eraser Eater without looking at him. The dollar floats around a bit in the cool Costco air, and Eraser Eater snatches it, puzzled.
"Just take it!" he yells, "Just stop whining! Give me some peace!"
I can not handle the situation anymore. It is my stinking dollar anyway. "What?!" I say to the Oldest, "You found that sucker, it is yours. If Eraser Eater wants to whine about it, that is HIS problem!"
"But I want him to have it!" The Oldest firmly says. I don't believe him. That dollar there is one dollar behind getting a stinking game cube to him. No fun, no laughter, no Super Smash Brothers, or whatever it is called that he keeps saying he wants.
Eraser Eater throws the dollar on the seat of the cart at the Oldest's hands.
"What?!" says the oldest, annoyed.
"I don't want your dollar," Eraser Eater says in a crabby voice, "I want to find my own dollar on the ground. Why can't I find my own dollar on the ground?!" He starts up.
I turned to the kid in my very own motherly fashion and ask him in a muffled rage whether he would prefer me to take another of my own dollars and throw it on the ground for him to "find".
I realize that this story goes nowhere. Ah, and you read to the end, didn't you? Or maybe you skimmed to the end. My solution though, after recounting this incident, is a mother should never go anywhere without a little duct tape.