March 13, 2012

A Little Ventilation

There are days when it all just goes to hell.

First, I hate that I have to prove myself to people after all this time. Bones is at this art school and they don't know me from Adam. They don't know what I've done with my life, what my capabilities are, or what kind of volunteer time I put in elsewhere. I'm just some other Mom.

This past November, I asked that when I chaperoned this next trip for the Boys Chorus, that they not make me room with the same Mom I roomed with last year. I absolutely cannot stand her. I'm not sure where I would begin. The fact she thinks she knows everything? The fact she never shuts up? The fact that when she rooms with someone she has absolutely NO respect for someone else and keeps the TV on all night long?

All night.

Folks, that is fine if that's what you do, but when someone is forced to bunk in with you, have some respect. Seriously. I don't watch TV AT.ALL so he can just imagine how bat frickin' crap crazy that made me.

So fast forward to today.

My trig student came to my house for me to help her with her homework. She didn't have her book, her notes were inadequate and if she'd been doing her homework, I'd not know because it all seemed new to her. Add to that the fact I've not done vectors in forever and a day and don't remember the formulas off the top of my head and there was frustration on my part.

I had the internet open, looking for some basics, knowing the rest would come back. But 30 minutes into it, I was stressed because I couldn't find what I needed and I thought, 'Who comes to a tutoring session and doesn't bring their materials?'

But she is sweet and I like her and I know she is flighty at times like my VERY OWN 17 year old.

Which brings me to... so we're 40 minutes into my helping her as I researched when my son calls me from the side of the road. The night before I'd printed out the forms he needed signed for his Volunteer hours that were due this past MONDAY. He was off to do more volunteer work.

Ringo: Hey. You know those volunteer forms you printed out for me?

Me: Yes.

Ringo: They flew out of the car.



Me: I'm sorry, but I think I heard you say, "they flew out of the car". What do you mean, they 'flew out of the car'?

Ringo: I have the windows open and they flew out of the car.

Me: Where are you?

Ringo: I pulled over on PGA to call you.

Me: Where are the forms?

Ringo: Somewhere on Northlake Blvd...

Me, LOUDLY: SON. You listen to me. This is what NORMAL PEOPLE DO. They ride with the a/c on and the windows up. We're in FLO-RI-DA. IF however, you want the windows open, you put those papers in a frickin' folder or somewhere where they DON'T BLOW OUT THE WINDOW!!!

Holy crap. I think I nearly had a stroke. The kid does more volunteer hours than just about any kid I know, but do you think he can get it documented?

Do you know what he said to me? "Mom. You need to relax. You get too uptight..."

Holy crap.

So flash forward to this evening. I had a parents' meeting for this trip to San Antonio I'm chaperoning with the boys' chorus.

I open the folder... and there is her frickin' name as my roommate. I thought, "You must be kidding me. This absolutely cannot be happening."

Wednesday through Sunday with 190 12-13 year old kids and a woman who makes me certifiably insane.

And as I sifted through all the filghts, as all 190 are flying, but taking three different flights, I find that I have the ABSOLUTE last flight coming in, 9:40PM, back to West Palm Beach, and on Monday morning, I'm supposed to be at Tyndall AFB... 8AM.

I checked flights and the best I can do is leave here at 545AM and get there at around 930AM. It's the same frickin' state, but I have to travel through Atlanta.

Because you know the saying, "to get to hell, you have to go through Atlanta..."

Although I think there is a corollary about living with teenagers and hell... not sure what it is. But I know there is one...

Posted by Boudicca at March 13, 2012 09:28 PM

Simple: Tell whoever scheduled you to room with the wrong person that due to work schedules, you can't make that trip. And by the way, what part of "I never want to room with that woman again" didn't you understand?" It's their problem, not yours.
P.S. _ I never have such problems raising cats, not kids. Parents like you deal with a LOT of crap.

Posted by: George P at March 13, 2012 10:17 PM

It's the choral directors. And by not going, I am punishing Bones. He asked me to chaperone.

I did just send them an email saying, 'Please tell me that I am not stuck with her on four flights..."

Posted by: Bou at March 13, 2012 10:21 PM

Break the tv. Hide the remote. Pull the cord out of the wall. Itching powder in her sheets. While she talks, start writing on a notepad. Tilt your head to the side, then smirk and write something else on the pad. If she asks what it is, flip the paper over where she can't see it and say "Nothing!" Then leave it out when you shower so she can find where the notes say, 'The voices in the tv are telling me to do it. Tonight.'

Posted by: Mrs. Who at March 13, 2012 10:25 PM

You know, Mrs. Who, you're kinda evil. Maybe that's why I like you... ;-)

I had to take a deep breath and figure out my mental retreat. I decided that when I don't have to be with her, I'll go into the lobby and read.

I'm thinking I may take chocolate as well. Or get doughnuts...

Posted by: Bou at March 13, 2012 10:34 PM

Oh how I hated when everything wants to be scheduled at the same time.

Pack a second generic remote to turn the TV off or get a TV remote app for your smart phone if you have one. How about packing a practice chanter to brush up on those bagpipe skillz. *grin* She'd probably have endless questions about it thought.

If you have a music player download some white noise. I like to use the thunderstorm from simplynoise dot com or oscillate the brown noise. It sounds like the beach to me. I see they even have an app now.

Hope the book is good.

Posted by: cin at March 14, 2012 01:55 AM

Tell her that leaving the TV on all night increases her chances of dying in that hotel room by 100%.

No hints, no BS, just "If that TV is on past lights out, I'm throwing it in the shower with you in the morning"

Posted by: Graumagus at March 14, 2012 05:33 AM

A TV remote app... hmmmm....

Yeah, I'm going to have to be up front. It is too long of a trip for me to go and not sleep AT ALL. Last time it was just two nights. This time we're looking at four.

And what was the probability that the only two people going on this trip that I know or enjoy hanging out with are two men? One of my husband's best buddies is one of the Dads going. Thank God he's going to be there. And one of the Dads from last year is going. He's an engineer. So we got along fabulously.

If they'd been women, I could have asked to room with them. But NO. My frickin' comfort zone has to be two men... Sheesh.

Posted by: Bou at March 14, 2012 05:45 AM

DO something about it. Draw a boundary and insist they honor it. You're raising your kids right, but you shouldn't have to help raise the adults who never were trained.

If you must be with this woman, draw a boundary with her. Tell her she needs to be quiet for a while. Tell her to turn the TV off and go to sleep. Tell her she's rude. It's probably not the first time she's heard it. But maybe it is. You don't hate her, you just want some mutual respect, so there's nothing wrong with you making HER feel uncomfortable if she won't step up. It's a kindness, really. She may go her whole life without a clue.

You're gonna worry about what someone like that thinks of you?

Posted by: Joan of Argghh! at March 14, 2012 07:36 AM

Actually, that's not it at all. I don't care what she thinks of me. I just did not want the confrontation resulting in a room that was ice cold for four days.

It's a cultural thing too. She is from a different cultural that can be very pushy and invasive. It would have been nice if this entire thing could have been avoided by my requesting NOT to be with her. But it wasn't and now I have to deal with it like I have to deal with everything else in my life.

It would have just been nice to have a bye on this one. Not to be.

Posted by: Bou at March 14, 2012 08:03 AM

And yeah, I hate her. I roomed with her. I can't stand any aspect of her personality and what she stands for. I heard too much, I know too much... Yeah, I can't stand this woman.

Posted by: Bou at March 14, 2012 08:04 AM

... yikes.... it sounds like it is going to be quite the un-adventure......

Posted by: Eric at March 14, 2012 08:25 AM

Oh, Bou. Is it possible to pay for a separate room? It might be worth the money if you can do it.

Posted by: PeggyU at March 14, 2012 11:40 AM

I've been giving that consideration, my own room, but it's been so expensive to go... that I just can't. I'm not sure there are rooms left.

Part of me is going because Bones asked. Part of me is going because... of apron strings. I'm admitting it. I couldn't put him on a plane without me or my husband. That whole 'fear of flying' thing.

Posted by: Bou at March 14, 2012 06:37 PM

Do you know of someone you could house with, rather than stay at the hotel? A friend of a friend or a relative or something?

Posted by: PeggyU at March 15, 2012 02:45 AM

"Although I think there is a corollary about living with teenagers and hell..."

Are you sure you didn't mean coronary?
Pretty sure living with teenagers will give you one of those. ;-)

Posted by: Roses at March 15, 2012 02:41 PM

Oh MY GAWD!!!!

Okay I know you did a ton of work on setting this up. Didn't you blog that not too long ago... You of all people should get a say in who you room with or not. IF there is more than one set of parents going then someone gets to change with you. You do not have to make all the arrangements then get the crap bed assignment too... No.

But if you do have to room with her I'm with everyone else. The tv goes off at 11 pm latest so you can sleep. If she can't sleep she can head to the lobby to watch tv. Holy crap! My head is about to explode here and I'm not even going on this trip...

Posted by: Teresa at March 15, 2012 10:16 PM