In that post, I discussed the fact that the question itself isn't offensive, but the tone with which it is delivered usually is. Luckily, the general masses never cease to surprise me with their idiocy or rudeness. At least once a week someone queries about my giant brood of children. I'm not sure why, but I always try to answer as politely as possible. Maybe I'm trying to set a good example for my children. Or maybe, I'm afraid if I bust out some snappy retort it will be laced with the built up profanity of years of fielding these inane questions. Here are some of my favorite and most frequent questions. I've also given my answers (with what I'd really like to say in parentheses).
Are they all yours? (Be sure to make crazy ugly faces while you say this.)
Yes, they're all mine. (Seriously, why in the world would I drag someone else's kids to BJ's for 87 rolls of toilet paper?)
Are there any twins in the bunch? (Meaning: There's no way you could have possibly meant to have kids less than two years apart.)
No, there are no twins in the bunch. (Did you want to see their birth certificates for confirmation?)
Wow. You must be busy. (There's usually some eyebrow waggling here. I'm not sure if they're offended by my number of kids or my sex life.)
Yes, I am busy. (Did you want to give me a hand? No? Okay, then shut up.)
Do you know where babies come from? (Hey, dummy, stop having unprotected sex.)
Um, I think so. (Did you want me to discuss the how and when of each conception? Or do you really want me to start telling you my five birth stories? I'd be happy to go into graphic detail you f'ing moron. Because, much to my surprise, there was no freaking stork involved.)
Better you than me.
Indeed. (Seriously, no shit.)
The other day, though, I got a new question. I haven't had a new one in a while, so it was a real treat.
The kids and I were walking in the arboretum. We were on our way to the top of the big hill. Everyone was getting a little tired, but behaving wonderfully. (I swear, these people never question me on those occasions when someone is acting up. It's when the kids are bordering on perfect angels that some ass feels compelled to approach me. Illogical.) It was such a nice way to enjoy nature and get a some exercise at the same time. As we were heading up the hill, a young woman, maybe in her late 20s or early 30s, was walking her dog down the hill. She stopped to let Charlotte (who was bringing up the rear of our little hike) pet her tiny dog. Charlotte thanked her for stopping when, out of the blue, the woman looked at me and said, "How do you do it with all of these kids? JEEEEESUS!" I wish there were a proper font to convey how she said "Jesus" to me. It was drawn-out and ugly. She was clearly deeply offended. Luckily, the rude responses never occur to me until later because all I said was, "Well, it's always interesting."
I wish I'd asked her how she does it with that ugly face and attitude. Or why she has to be such an asshole while she shouts "JEEESUS" in front of my little Catholic school kids. I just turned to Patrick and said, "Well, that was a new one." Even at the age of 9 he's well aware that we draw a lot of attention. (He was, after all, the one who pointed out the lady who kept counting the kids in spanish a few years ago. Yes, lady, cinco. Tengo cinco niños.)
Anyway... here we go. It's the summer, so I'll be spending most of my time out in public with my
|Yes, there are indeed 5 of them. And a dog. JEEEEESUS!|
Thanks to my Twitter and Facebook peeps for arming me with an arsenal of comical and sarcastic responses to the morons who question me. I'm going to put them on little notecards so I can have them for handy reference the next time some fool approaches.
**And be sure to visit my Zazzle store. Don't you need a new coffee mug or apron?
Have a good story to share about an obnoxious stranger? Feel free to share in the comments!