Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Haikus For My Own Private Waterloo

I suck as a mom,
not for the obvious, but
for the stupid stuff.

I make them eat their
vegetables and drink their milk
And do their homework.

Their wails make me smile
as I set the course; mixing
Athens with Sparta.

But then I get a plan.
Something to make them smile,
Glad I am their mom.

Good in it's way, but
then I get cocky and make
promises. I'm doomed.

Like just this Sunday:
"Hey, Colin, let's have your friend
to play in the pool!"

What pool? Well you ask.
Really more a plan as it's
still stuck in its box.

See, after years of
inflatable pools that
die and go to ground,

this year we made a
change and got a Slip 'n Slide
for their summer fun.

But it was no pool.
Nope. It was a little fun,
but it was no pool.

So, "Fuck it," I said.
Life's too short to not have a
pool in your backyard.

The problem is it
kills the grass as it sits there,
for more than a week.

But, wait! We've a slab
of vacant concrete poured by
the prior owners.

It's flat! It's grass-free!
It's level (I think it is).
The place for a pool.

Off we go, to Toys
R Us, Where pools are on sale!
(Who needs measurements!?!)

So, after breakfast,
and laundry. And dinner prep.
And my exercise,

I head out to the
Midwest backyard, where its now
90* in the shade.

Colin's friend arrives
with flip-flops, swimsuit and towel,
ready for a dip.

Alas, the pool is
still theoretical and
laughing at me.

See, it's a full yard
(a meter) too big for the
handy cement pad.

The pad, I might add,
is only mostly level,
for all it's grass free.

Two options there are:
Charles says let it go and get
another, smaller pool.

Me? I say let's do
the more miserable way
and build up the slope.

Thar's rock a-plenty
in the fire pit. I can
build a pool rampart.


Pictures for you



Yeah. Good plan, that. Hot
and humid. The sweat burns with
the dirt in my eyes.

I forgot the bush
I had to transplant so the
pool wouldn't crush it.

(Colin and his friend
went down to the basement and
played video games.)


Charles, always wise,
remained exiled on Elba;
he had to study.


Hours later, I
Once again filled the bastard
and prayed for success.

Let's define 'success',
shall we? It holds some water
and is sort of round.

Maybe it is less
than half its expected depth
and shaped like a "D"

Pictures for you

And there's a sort of
waterfall at one place as
one side collapses.


Pictures for you

On a side note, I
noted a water beetle
made the pool its home.

This was only a half
hour from starting to fill the
cursed fucking pool.

(How a water bug
got in that fast? I'm flummoxed.
Call her 'Harriet'.)


Pictures for you



So, there we are kids.
I tried, I really did, but
I suck as a mom.

Tomorrow, you can
splash in your puddle and make
friends with Harriet.

Maybe now you'll find that
the poor Slip 'n Slide is not
such a wretched deal.



-------------
The following day,
my own private Waterloo
sinks to sad, new depths.



Pictures for you

Hell with it. I'll clean
it and donate it to some
poor sap at Goodwill.

The rock, of course, will
all have to be schlepped back to
the fire pit site.

The transplanted bush?
There it stays. I'll plant a spare
in its former spot.
------------

I want it noted that
I was just transiently
thwarted in my quest.

The next day I found
Another pool, smaller, less
tricky to put up.

Napoleon has
nothing on me for stubborn
personality.

*34 degrees C for the civilized world.

Anyone want a minimally used pool with filter-pump (complete with O rings lubricated) and ladder assembled? You need a 13 foot (4+ meter) scrupulously level spot of yard or you will rue the day and regret the loss of your sanity. Actually, I've been using the ladder in my multi-month window-washing quest, so at least the ladder has been pressed into honest service.

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15 Comments:

Blogger Teresa said...

Doesn't it gall you that Charles was right after all that battling?
I'm here! Call you on Friday.

10:36 PM  
Blogger Rozanne said...

What a tale of woe. (Might as well laugh as cry, right?) I still give you full marks as a mom.

I'd describe the shape of that pool as "ovular." That's a term that was used in a film I saw that was based on something by Kafka. In fact, the whole ordeal could be said to be somewhat Kafka-esque, couldn't it?

11:50 PM  
Blogger Dumdad said...

Great haiku - you made quite a splash!

6:45 AM  
Anonymous stepping over the junk said...

maybe you should join the YMCA?

8:21 AM  
Blogger Diana said...

Teresa- Yes. Yes, it did. He did have the compassion to not say that he told me so. See you soon!

Rozanne- My best mom plans never seem to go as they play out in my head. I like 'ovular'. It fits. As does Kafka, sadly.

Dumdad- More a fizzle and a dribble than a splash, I think.

Stepping- Actually, we do belong to the Y, which is where the kids go and fail to learn how to swim, but have lots of fun. It's just rather a drive (15 miles to the closest one) and it's nice to have a backyard pool where they can plan and I can get something done.

9:22 AM  
Anonymous Reid Ferriss said...

Sounds like you-all need a trip to the Pacific Ocean and a Granddad to teach swimming in the surf. With the Mom-genes you possess, I couldn't imagine you being any better.

The Ole RF-er

12:26 PM  
Blogger Mother of Invention said...

AW! Well, you tried your level..or unlevel best! And are the kids still in the basement playing video games?!

10:06 PM  
Blogger Jocelyn said...

Okay, the Psychic Sister connection is getting freakish. Today was my Pull The Damn Pool Out Day (and spend 40 minutes filling it while propping up the sides with plastic chairs). But we refused, when we bought this one a few years ago, to go inflatable. I'm now triple glad of that.

You're definitely, clearly, obviously...

a terrible mother.

1:15 AM  
Blogger moegirl said...

Despite its unusual shape, it still held water! Kids could still play in it despite it's imperfection?

Oh well, in addition to the slip-n-slide you could also encourage them to run through the sprinkler, that way you're watering your lawn as well!

Excellent haiku- you are more Athens than Sparta!

4:08 PM  
Blogger Coffee-Drinking Woman said...

for all of that work
you could have dug deep and had
a nice in-ground pool

(don't throw anything)

2:24 AM  
Blogger JoeinVegas said...

Hmmm, yes, in ground, use the one you have as a liner. Just give the kids shovels and promises of cool water.

11:29 AM  
Blogger Janelle said...

heheheheheheheheheheheheheheh breathe breathe heheheheheheheheh!!!
xxx
janelle

12:49 PM  
Blogger Jocelyn said...

Just here again to say, "Lawsy, but I do love your comments. You ain't a dummm one."

11:18 AM  
Blogger Amy said...

Oh my. The terrible mum thing. At least you didn't put pinch collars on them and clicker train them to slide down the (theoretical) pool slide.
Doomed, I am. Doomed.

2:18 PM  
Blogger Sanjay said...

You did well. :)

8:14 PM  

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