Sunday, October 03, 2004

A Snowboard for Emmy

Morning at Groovy Grandma's felt like a spa compared to the chaos of matin on Third Street. Smartmom welcomed the quiet, the fresh coffee, the Zabar's croissant, and the Sunday New York Times.

Things revved up a bit when Cool Cousin stopped by with a thoughtful, belated birthday gift for Smartmom -- a lovely pair of earrings and a braclet. Cool Cousin, one of Smartmom's favorite people in the world, runs the Petra Foundation, an organization that honors "the unsung individuals making distinctive contributions to the rights, autonomy, and dignity of others." For more information about this organization that is really making a difference, go to: The three minus OSFO, who was intravenously viewing Saturday morning cartoons, drank coffee on Groovy Grandma's terrace analyzing everything under the sun and then some and laughing a lot in the process. Smartmom and Cool Cousin promised to make an effort to see more of eachother this year.

Smartmom ran four miles in Riverside Park, site of her teenage forays into athleticism. At the start of the run, Smartmom tripped on a crack in the sidewalk and fell splat on her face, cutting her hands and knees in the process. Deeply shaken and even more embarrassed, she picked herself up and continued running on the brand new Riverside pedestrian path. Smartmom was duly impressed with the design and landscaping of this knockout reinvention of the West Side waterfront. Too bad about those UGLY Trump (boo boo, hiss hiss) buildings, though.

A trip to The American Girl Doll Store, a craven monument to childhood consumerism, was the next item on the agenda. The store is also a great place to get in touch with your inner girly girl and bond with the little girl in your life. The three subwayed down to 50th Street and on their walk to the store, happened upon the temporary Jonathan Borofsky sculpture near the Rockefeller Center Skating Rink. "Walking in the Sky" is a 100-foot-tall stainless steel pole that tilts out of the ground with several life size figures climbing up including a little girl with pigtails. OSFO loved it and took 24 small booklets about the piece that she plans to give to her class at Monday's Show and Tell. Extra credit for OSFO! Smartmom says: "'Walking in the Sky' is only there until October 18th, so cross the damn river and take a look at it."

Smartmom sternly told OSFO that she could buy ONE and ONLY ONE outfit at the store. OSFO agreed and made a fairly quick decision to buy her doll Emmy, one of the contemporary American girls, a snowboarding outfit that she saw in a display case. Way to go, OSFO!! Quick decision making in a toy venue is always well appreciated. Except for one tiny, little problem. The natty snowsuit, pants, and snowboots did not come with the snowboard, the helmet or the purple snow goggles that OSFO saw in the display case and desired desperately.

All things considered, OSFO was fairly mature throughout this tense situation: she stared forlornly at the snowboard in the misleadingly cruel display case for a few minutes, making special eye contact with the coveted purple snow goggles. Finally, Groovy Grandma, never one to leave a granddaughter crying in a toy store, generously volunteered to buy OSFO the snowboard (which came with said goggles and shiny silver helmet).

Voila -- situation solved. Emmy got her snowboard, Smartmom didn't have to cave in or back down. A perfect resolution to a potentially explosive American Girl Doll shopping experience.

They paid the cashier and high-tailed it back to Brooklyn.


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