Memos from the Middle

Smack-Dab in the Middle of Living

Thanks for Nothing, Lady!

Dear Strange Lady at Target,

Thank you for nothing! I had a perfect mommy-daughters day going until you had to open your big mouth. Who invited you into my picturesque little moment and gave you permission to speak? I don’t hate you, but our encounter has left me with a very, very strong dislike for you.



Here are some tips for the next time you decide to butt in:

  1. When you see two children under the age of five actually walking along side their tired, overworked mother being both obedient and sweet, walk around them quickly without making eye contact. This gives the kids a signal that you are neither interested nor potentially interesting.
  2. If you just so happen to make eye contact, refrain from smiling. I know it’s hard because the kids are cute, and their smiles are infectious, but you must continue shopping with the stoicism of a Roman statue.
  3. If a smile must penetrate your lips, refuse to speak to the children. You are inviting a world of questions that you really don’t want to answer and that I don’t really have time to allow. Remember, it’s both embarrassing and hard to explain to a three-year-old what anti-fungal cream is and why you need it, so let’s just keep any conversation off the table.
  4. If you violate all of the above rules and actually begin a conversation with these kids, under no circumstances are you to compliment them on their behavior or manners. The irony of it is that the moment you do so, all of their busy-body tendencies kick into overdrive, and now they must prove you wrong. As a result, that tired, overworked mother is now trying in vain to corral her kids using her stern-but-not-too-loud disciplinarian voice, and you are long gone, off in the food section buying all of the yogurt your cart can hold, completely oblivious to the anarchy you just unleashed.

    When do I get a nap? Huh? (Property of M. McCottrell)

Now, because of all the running around they’ve done, they’re completely exhausted and fall asleep in the car, which means that when we get home, which is the appropriate nap time, no one will be tired except me. Thanks, again, for nothing!

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2 thoughts on “Thanks for Nothing, Lady!

  1. That’s why I don’t shop at Target, people don’t mind their own business.

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