Sunday, July 24, 2005


On Friday night, Teen Spirit decided to stay up all night. Just for fun. It wasn't like he was gallavanting around Park Slope or running with a wild crowd. He was home and just decided to see what it was like to stay up all night.

Smartmom knew nothing about this until 9 a.m. the next morning. When she woke up, she found a note on the dining room table that said: Out for a walk. Back in a jiffy! It was signed Teen Spirit with a wacky smiley face.

Smartmom didn't know what to make of it at first. She looked around and was relieved to find Teen Spirt in the living room sitting on one end of the couch, OSFO on the other. "I stayed up all night..." he said openly. Smartmom held up the note. There was no need to ask any questions. "Oh, I went to the park at 6 a.m. I was swinging on a swing. I watched the dog walkers. It was very calm."

Okay. Weird. He's home safe. Thoughts bounced through Smartmom's mind.

OSFO said she was telling Teen Spirit the story of when Smartmom was a 10-year-old girl and she and BEST AND OLDEST had a secret club called S.U.A.N. or the Stay Up All Night Club. One night, they did indeed stay up all night and at 6 a.m. or so they left a note saying that they were going to Herman's Toys and Stationers on Broadway to buy some pencils. Instead, they went to a 24-hour market on Broadway called Merit Farms, bought some fried chicken, and had breakfast in Riverside Park. After their little picnic sitting on a rock in the park, they walked down Riverside Drive and saw Smartmom's Dad leaning out the window nine stories up. "Oh there's my dad," Smartmom said. "He doesn't look happy." He screamed at them to come home. His arm waved angrily.

"I knew that story before you were even born," Teen Spirit told OSFO. At which point, Smartmom chimed in: "So, I see you're a member of S.U.A.N. now?"

But really she was concerned and deeply curious about what he was really doing out in the park at six in the morning. She wasn't ready for a big speech and a reprimand, it was too early in the morning for that. She did say something like: "The park is too dangerous to be out there in the morning." To which he replied, "But it was filled with dogwalkers..."

It's a strange thing being the mother of a teen. Sometimes Smartmom just don't know what to say or do. Hepcat and SM plan to have a talk with Teen Spirit today. A long talk. There are a lot of rules that need to be set down. Rules they didn't even know they had to set down. Who knew that "Don't take walks at 6 a.m. in the morning" was something that had to be said. Teen Spirit is crossing all kinds of lines. Not in the obvious ways. But he's doing it just the same.


At 12:10 AM, Blogger Udge said...

Hooray, Smartmom's back :-)

Kids and rules, a never-ending story...

At 7:30 AM, Blogger Little Light said...

Good luck.

At 1:58 PM, Blogger Savtadotty said...

I missed you!

My "teenager" is now visiting me with his wife and one-year-old daughter. They're in the next room this minute! I don't get to make the rules any more...what a relief! I hope you get as much naches from your son (and daughter). You're earning it.


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