The Teen Princess Smackdown

For the first time since before motherhood, I ventured out into the real world today. The mission? Sanity. Which comes in the form of the elimination of cabin fever via lunch with Deb. And maybe a coffee afterward.

With the sort of planning reserved for week-long backpacking treks, I began getting ready for my outing weeks prior to departure time. I counted down the list of crap I was suddenly required to carry, ranging from a change of clothes (for myself and the baby - just in case of a spitup tsunami) to more than 60 pounds of gear including a stroller that looks like it could handle an Ironman Competition without popping a spring and a heavy duty car seat that makes The Varmint groan aloud when lifting it.

Being as my body is still in danger of popping its' own spring thanks to my c-section, Deb agreed to meet me at the restaurant of choice (that would be Quizno's, we're minding our pennies, thankyouverymuch), unload all the gear and set it up for me. An angel, I tell you. She makes it all flow so easy, I wonder what it would cost for me to buy my very own baby sherpa?

Anyway, it turns out I've got a pretty sweet set-up. It scored five stars on the initial test drive. I feel highly mobile pushing my super techie stroller / babyseat contraption, and I note that the kid never squawks when she's riding in it, either. Overall, I'd say her ride is way better than mine - but then I still drive a 1998 RAV4. Her stroller might fetch more on the open market these days.

It's weird to realize that in the blink of an eye, you become a stroller-pusher. Formerly I was an avowed stoller loather: So many of those broads would get under my skin - driving their oversized monster strollers down the narrow aisles of the shoe department with fire in their eyes, indignant that you might try to shimmy past, self-righteously hogging the entire space and forcing everyone else to reroute themselves to accomodate their wishes. I hope I remember how I felt then, in my pre-baby days.

I plan to have better manners. Or hope to. Maybe it's a hormone thing. On the other hand, while it seems to me that having a baby is not an entitlement to social advantage, it might ought to entitle one to a bit more consideration.

For example, it's hard to hold a baby and pull money out of your wallet, all at the same time. It just takes longer. That means I don't need your eye-roll, you snivelly, besnotted teen princess in line behind me at Starbucks.

Therefore, I rain kudos down upon the head of the cute baristo you were unsuccessfully flirting with. He who shot you a dirty look and made his way from behind the counter to hand-deliver our lattes and sweetly help us out the door with a jaunty "That baby looks really comfortable. Have a good one!"

That's the kind of guy I'd want my daughter to date. In the meantime, you can have the shirtless, smirky guy with the wallet fob, hanging out smoking a skinny cigarette in the parking lot.

What?! Don't look at me like that, Princess. . . I may be a mommy, but that doesn't make me Mary Poppins.


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I am a writer and lazy artist who loves travel, architecture and design. Right now, I'm into photography. My fabulous husband (a.k.a. The Varmint) and I are also the principals of a San Diego-based creative agency - and new parents to the divine Baby Mak. Read More >