It’s Either Adoption Or Kidnapping

, , , , | Friendly | June 21, 2020

My two kids are adopted. I’m Caucasian; they’re Latino. When they are toddlers, I make friends with a Latina nanny in my town whose charge is a typical blonde-haired, blue-eyed Caucasian. 

We take the kids out to a museum and a store, with her pushing her charge in a stroller and me pushing my kids in a double stroller. The kids are all giggling and babbling while my friend and I stop to look at something in the store and a random woman comes by.

Woman: *Looking at my kids* “Oh, aren’t you two adorable.” *Turning to my friend* “Are they yours?”

Me: “No, they’re mine.”

The woman gets “Surprised Pikachu” face.

Friend: “This one’s mine.”

She points to the little boy she watches.

Woman: “But… how…?”

She just sort of wandered away, occasionally looking back at us with a perplexed face. I think we broke her.

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Sometimes A Little Pick-Me-Up Picks You Up A Lot

, , , , , | Friendly | June 20, 2020

I’ve had a less than calm-inducing day today, to say the least. Day-to-day, I am a single parent to my young daughter, but she usually visits her mother — my ex — for a night each weekend. My daughter usually looks forward to these visits, especially since Mummy takes her to [Fast Food Restaurant] for a [Kids’ Meal] most times.

However, late this afternoon, I was informed that my ex would not be able to collect our daughter after school for the visit as planned because she had been arrested. I now found myself in the position of rearranging my plans for my no-longer-child-free night, getting organized to collect my daughter, and figuring out how to tell her that she wouldn’t see Mummy this weekend without letting on the reason why.

Oh, and trying to get in touch with lawyers on a Friday afternoon to figure out how this affects future visits. Like I said, it’s been “interesting.”

[Daughter] was understandably disappointed when she found out she wouldn’t get to see Mum that night. After we got in the car, she asked me if she could please have [Fast Food], because Mummy always gets it for her. While I can’t afford to buy fast food all the time, I decided to say yes this time, partly because she still seemed sad and maybe it would help her feel a little better about it, and also because I wouldn’t mind something nice myself.

Is it still “comfort food” if it’s a drink? Sure, why not!

When we got to the drive-thru, the place was packed. We finally ordered her kids’ meal and a coffee for me, and we slowly inched our way forward to the payment window.

When we finally got there, the worker at the window asked, “Hi, did you have the [Kids’ Meal] and the coffee?”, in a tone of voice that immediately made me think they were going to tell me something was wrong. 

Great, I thought. Now there’s a problem with this, as well?

Out loud, I just said, “Uh, yeah, that’s ours.”

I definitely did not expect her response: “Yeah, so, the lady a few cars ahead paid for your order and said to tell you to have a happy Friday.”

I was in a mild state of shock as I pulled up to the next window to collect our food, though I was quickly brought back to earth by having to explain to my daughter why someone we don’t know would pay for our food.

I guess sometimes, people just want to do a random act of kindness… and I don’t know why, but sometimes what seems like almost nothing can really make a big difference to how you’re feeling. Thanks, random stranger lady!

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Having A Pew Pew Fight, Part 2

, , , , | Friendly | June 19, 2020

After reading the Having A Pew Pew Fight story, I had to submit these two incidents. At sixty-five, I AM an older person, although I believe “elderly” is however old I am plus forty years. However, both of these incidents take place when I am in my late thirties.

Incident 1: I am at my usual church for 11:00 am Sunday Mass. I have arrived early as there is always a problem getting a place to sit at this particular mass. I have removed my jacket, settled my purse, and am on my knees praying when two older women come down the same pew. 

Older Woman #1: “Excuse me, miss.”

Older Woman #2: “You are in our pew!”

I cross myself and try to feel loving and kind since, you know, I am here to praise God and all.

Me: “I’m sorry.”

Older Woman #1: “I said you are in our pew. Everyone knows this is our pew!”

Me: “Uh— I didn’t know.”

I look at the pew, which is about eight feet long and which has a column going up through the end where I am sitting.

Me: “I mean, there’s still—”

Older Woman #2: “No, no, no, no. You are in our seats. You are sitting where we sit. This is our pew. Everyone knows that.”

I stare at them in disbelief, and then I decide it’s better to give them the shirt off my back, as it were, than start a fight over whose pew this is.

I gather my stuff and proceed out of the pew and they barely back up enough to let me by.  

Me: “Enjoy. Have a great day!”

Older Woman #1: “Where are you going?”

Me: “Further back.”

Older Woman #2: “Oh, that’s just silly. You don’t have to leave. You can sit on the far end.”

Me: “With all due respect, ladies. yes, I do have to move further back. Trust me.”

Incident 2: It’s right before Easter and I have been trying to get to Confession for weeks, but my church changed the hours of Confession and I am usually working when the sacrament is available. So, I go to another church that has a reputation for being snooty. 

I can attest to the snootiness, too. After I had attended several masses and no one would look at me, much less shake my hand during the sign of peace, I got the message and found my other church.

I have gotten out of the Confessional and, as there is a good half-hour before Saturday evening Mass begins, I grab a pew at the back to go through my penance prayers. And I figure I will then just stay for the Mass as Sunday is going to be a busy day.

I haven’t even gotten through one Hail Mary when I feel a forceful tapping on my shoulder. Think “Woodpecker with a glove over its nose.” Tap, tap, tap.

I look up and see two people, maybe in their early fifties, but acting as if they are over one hundred and two.

Woman: “I’m sorry, I don’t know what you think you are doing, but this is our pew.”

This is literally the worst pew in the world. It’s right at the back of the church and so far to the side in front of the Confessionals that you couldn’t see the Mass if you had one of those telescopes that goes around corners.

Me: “I am just doing my penance and…”

Woman: “I said this is our pew. You have to leave now.”

I survey the whole church, which is still completely empty because Mass doesn’t start for over half an hour.

Me: “But, I—”


And then he adds the phrase that they seem to think should make sense for someone who rarely goes to their church.


I start gathering my stuff and pushing my way out because, like the other two ladies, this couple wants to make sure they get IN before I get OUT.

Me: “Enjoy your pew. I guess I will go find a more pleasant place to say my penance.”

Woman: “Oh, well, you can stay at the end if you want.”

What is this obsession with having to sit all the way in? I was taught that you take your seat and move in.

Me: “No, I don’t think so. I just finished Confession. I need to leave right now before what I am thinking turns into words and I have to go straight back in and make another report.”

No, I really wouldn’t do that, but I am so peeved with these two pew huggers I get down on their level for a minute.

Woman: “Oh, really, that’s so rude!”

Me: “Well, it is for one of us.”

I have only been back to that church once and it was for the memorial service for a friend’s infant. My friends were registered at that church because it was close, but even they agreed the vibe was annoying. It was the only time the church was filled with warmth and friendliness as no one else but the grieving couple was a member.

Seriously? I never sit in the same pew twice when I attend church and I don’t worry about someone sitting in my spot. WHO does that?

Having A Pew Pew Fight

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On The Chatterbus To Shut-The-H***-Up-Ville

, , , , , , , | Friendly | June 19, 2020

I’m on a long bus trip from Montreal, Québec, to Ottawa and then Toronto, Ontario. It’s something like seven hours, not counting the connecting time in Ottawa. It’s a “night trip” starting at 21:00 in Montreal and ending at 05:00 in Toronto.

There are two women sitting just in front of me for the two-hour trip from Montreal to Ottawa. They chat non-stop for the whole trip. It’s relatively early, so it’s not that bad. They speak some Arabic language, which makes it like “noise” to me, and I’m able to take a nap, not being tempted, voluntarily or not, to eavesdrop.

Then, there’s the leg from Ottawa to Toronto, which is four hours. They are sitting a few rows behind the driver, but are just chatting again non-stop. I am seriously amazed that their vocal cords haven’t called it quits by this time. All we hear is them. No one else is talking.

Then, about an hour into this trip, the bus driver speaks up.

“To whoever is talking non-stop behind me, it’s 3:00 am. Some people might want to sleep. Could you please be considerate and shut the h*** up?”

That might not have been the most courteous way to ask for it, but it did the trick.

I’m sure many travelers, in their heads, clap their hands for the driver. I know I did.

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Has No One Heard Of Lady Marmalade?

, , , , | Friendly | June 18, 2020

French Tourist: “Aidez-moi, s’il vous plaît.” (Help me, please.)

I help him with directions.

Friend: “Was that French?”

Me: “Yep.”

My friend tries to tell the tourist, “Nice to meet you.”

Friend: “Voulez-vous coucher avec moi?” (Would you like to sleep with me?)

The tourist and I just stared at my friend.

It turned out that someone had told my friend that meant, “Nice to meet you,” in French. After realizing that, we all shared a good laugh.

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