We were three mothers standing in the cul-de-sac chatting about trivial things. Ripe strawberries, dogs, lost socks, dinner. The 5 children (1 girl and 4 boys), were playing kid stuff that involved running, stopping, yelling, bossing, and more running. We ladies were in the middle of a good laugh when my neighbor to the south glances at my front yard. Faster than a gate can swing shut in a cough of wind, her mouth fell open and her eyes widened to maximum orbit. She tried to say something, but only a few scratchy rounded vowel tones emerged from her tonsils. Her hands, though, were making small circles in the empty air as if they were grasping for something unseen.
My neighbor to the north and I stopped talking and turned around. We wanted to see what awesome or shocking thing had this mother of an adorable 6-year-old girl so speechless and so stupefied. Having had brothers and currently raising a boy or two, we just burst out in laughter at the sight.
“There he goes again,” my north neighbor stuttered between giggles.
I tapped her arm twice, struggling to birth some words between laughter. “Just watering.”
My southern neighbor finally closed her mouth enough to huff and puff a few times. “Did you see that?” she asked, he voice rising an octave between her first and fourth word.
We giggled some more.
“Doesn’t he know better?” Miss South asked, shock evident in her voice.
I nudged my northern neighbor. “At least it was your kid this time.”
Miss North wiped her eyes. “Do we owe you any damages for the yard?”
“Only if the grass turns yellow,” I laughed.
“D-did you teach him t-that? I mean d-does he, he, he do t-that everywhere? D-doesn’t he know better?” Miss South clearly had her vocal cords back, although she was stuttering from the shocking display.
“We occasionally allow him in the house,” Miss North giggled.
“You allow that, that kind of behavior? I mean . . . don’t you care?”
“He’s a boy,” Miss North and I said in unison.
“That can’t be normal? Miss South protested.
“Perfectly normal,” I said. ‘Actually quite normal.”
Miss South shook her head. It was obvious that she was glad for her one well-behaved girl who didn’t flash the neighbors and compromise her modesty when her bladder was full. Unlike Miss North’s son, who paused in the middle of running to pull down his pants and flash a cute little white heinny while watering the ground, only to start running again before the pants were firmly returned to his middle. He was clever too, because he wasn’t tagged during the whole 12-second episode.
This post is an excerpt of an earlier podcast, Episode # 30 of Life as it Comes, Front Yard Spectacle
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