In 15 minutes the kids are supposed to be barefoot and obedient in their karate class. Instead they're downstairs drinking Coke, eating crackers and peanut butter, and horsing around with Lego Atlantis.
They're happy, but I'm happier: I don't have to get in the goat-mobile to drive them to class, wait for them to figure out how to get into their little pajamas, wait some more while they're actually shuffling and whacking and whooping and hollering, wait again while they try to remember what locker they put their boy panties in, wait in the parking lot to get out, wait in the turn lane, drive all around the twisty-turny suburban cul-de-sacs and crescents that GOD HELP US if we ever have to evacuate this city, we'll all be circling our own neighborhoods for 25 minutes trying to figure out how to get out, and all this in a rusting stationwagon that smells like a certain sweaty coonhound. And all this while trying to edit a business proposal that must be out the door in about an hour. In Los Angeles. And WHOSE bright idea was it to forbid open bottles of alcohol in moving vehicles?
I think I'll couch this latest parenting failure in terms of a beaming gift of childhood. Here, boys, take it easy. Eat some junk food. Teach each other some swear words in the basement. You're welcome. Don't get Jiffy on your gi or I'll skin you alive.