The son recently needed some new clothes, and since he’s a boy, and a teenaged boy at that, he, of course, hates to shop. Online shopping to the rescue!
Normally we’ll sit down at the computer together, look at a few sites, make a few clicks, and…voila…shopping’s done! This time, though, I was in the middle of something else (probably sitting right here writing something) and, being’s as he’s 16-years old and all, I figured he’d be just fine doing it himself.
(Those old apron strings have to be cut sooner or later, right? Though, really, I’m not one of those helicopter parents, right kids? ‘What’s that, mom? We can’t hear you…you’re smothering us.’ Ha, ha, ha, good one, kids!)
So the son needs new clothes, I’m busy, he’s not, and so he goes into the office. He’s on the computer for about 15 minutes, comes back over to me, and says, “Okay, I’m done.” (What would have taken me at least three days, and would have certainly involved at least that many full shopping carts, he did in a snap. Aren’t boys wonderful?!)
I was ready to hand him my credit card then realized I’d have to give him my passwords and such and I’m just not ready to “go there” with him quite yet. Thankfully, too, because as it turns out he had missed the bright red “Save 20% AND Free Shipping” button, so I’m glad I was there to oversee at least this part of his first solo shopping experience…totally worth the $30 savings.
Fast forward a few days…His new clothes arrive and I let him deal with it…Yay, me! He unpacks them, throws away the trash, and places them in the hamper to be washed. I must confess I do my kids’ laundry. Mostly because I try to do my environmental part by running the largest loads possible (that’s my story anyway, and I’m sticking to it).
As I’m putting the laundry away (yes, I do this too…I am so busted), I notice three gray Quiksilver T-shirts. These are the new shirts he ordered and I’m thinking, ‘Wow, three gray shirts, how boring.’ Then it gets worse…not only did he order three gray shirts, but he ordered three IDENTICAL gray shirts. As in, it’s the EXACT same shirt, only there are three of them.
I race downstairs, call his name, and with my hands on my hips I look him straight in the face and say,
“You ordered three identical shirts! How could you order three identical shirts?”
He looks at me like I have three heads and he says, “So? What’s wrong with that?”
”So? So?” I say, “It’s going to look like you don’t change your clothes, that’s what’s wrong with that!”
He echoes his earlier response, “So? What’s wrong with that?” (Forget what I said earlier about boys being wonderful.)
What’s the big deal, you ask? It’s just a bunch of shirts, who cares? Well, I care. You see, my kids have two main jobs in life: 1. They are to get stellar grades and 2. They are to go out into the world and present themselves in a manner that does NOT suggest that their parents are asleep at the wheel. As far as I’m concerned, wearing the exact same shirt three days in a row is in direct violation of Job #2!
I try to explain this to him by saying, “Son, you have to remember that how you dress and how you act reflect upon your father and me, and no son of mine is going to go out in the world wearing the same clothes every day!” Yes, I know that, technically, they are not the same shirts. Yes, I know that they are three different shirts, and that they will be freshly laundered prior to each wearing. And yes, I know that there are people out there with bigger problems than this. I know that there are people out there who would be thrilled to have three clean shirts, period. But the point of this blog is not to save the world; rather, it’s to make people giggle every now and then (well, that, and to allow me a place to clear my head, but that’s all beside the point right now). The point right now is that for all intents and purposes my son is wearing the same shirt every day and I’m not having it!
We go round and round a few more times but he clearly does not see my point at all. And really, should I even be one bit surprised? After all, hanging in his father’s closet is not 1, not 2, not even 3, but 10…yes, 10…pair of khaki-colored pants! Why should the son be any different than the father? And don’t you dare point to the bottom of my closet and say, “But, but, but…you have at least 10 pair of black shoes.” That’s different and you know it!
Now…who’s in need of a gray T-shirt? Seems I have a couple extra! And, what the heck, I’ll even throw in a pair of khaki pants to go with it!