Captain Underpants and the Preposterous Plight of the Purple Potty People


“Sulu and Crackers have no idea what’s going on,” said George. “They think those two guys are US!

“How in the world are we going to stop US?” asked Harold.

At least I wasn’t the only one to show up to the goalie clinic a week early. There was one other mom with a slightly disappointed kid.

My brain’s inability to remember dates and times is at an extreme even Google doesn’t seem capable of compensating for.

Go ahead. Test me. Ask me what time B’s dentist appointment is tomorrow. Ask me if I’m sure it’s tomorrow. Ask me if we’re supposed to go to the old building or if the move has finished and I should arrive at the new building. Ask me the last time he flossed.

My answer to all of those questions will be a blank look and a quick shrug.

I used to worry that I was a victim of early onset dementia, and sometimes I still worry, but I’ve pretty much come around to favor the concept of over-saturation. I’m full. I’m overflowing. It’s time to stop asking my brain to absorb new information. But how can I? I’m only 41. There’s still so much to learn.

The soccer field is embarrassingly empty and I can imagine those far more capable soccer moms driving past, feeling sorry for the poor little boy all dressed up for soccer with no one to play with. “For shame,” they are thinking. “She didn’t slow down enough to read the email CAREFULLY. You have to read carefully these days. The dates are fast and furious and you have to be good to keep up. You got to have mad skillz.”

He’s throwing orphan water bottles around and running laps as though soccer scouts were secretly watching, judging his stamina, his attitude, his ability to overcome challenges like a forgetful mom.

I wonder, when the kids are grown and gone and no longer need me to organize their medical interventions and amateur sports careers, which information will be the first to fade. Will it be T’s need to wash his face (yes, every night)? Will it be L’s allergy to penicillin? B’s preference for a bedtime tea? Will these details fade until there is enough space in my head to remember my own set of have-tos, must-haves, and don’t-you-wishes?

This does happen, when I leave to spend a few nights on my own. Every couple of years or so, I get to think only my own thoughts and I realize that I’m fine, there’s nothing wrong with my brain, I’m still, you know, smartish, the words are there they’re just consistently blocked by the ever present demands of other people.

Ah. Now he wants to go home. But first he wants to stop for ice cream. “You owe me, you know,” he says, with an injured tone. And a part of me wants to tick off a list of things I do for him on a daily basis, ways in which my life is more complicated because of his needs, but I don’t. Instead, we stop for ice cream, and then we go home and watch Ferris Bueller’s Day Off with his brothers. Because, “Life moves pretty fast. If you don’t stop and look around once in a while, you could miss it.”

3 thoughts on “Captain Underpants and the Preposterous Plight of the Purple Potty People

  1. Is that the first time you have ever typed “mad skillz”? It feels like it. I love you for using that phrase.

    Google calendar is my brain btw. I outsourced long ago.

  2. Love this, Andi.

    And yes, we use Google Calendar. Both of us and we share them and use them and forget to check them and forget and forget…

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