...for a different kind of girl

silent surburban girl releasing her voice, not yet knowing what all she wants to say about her life and the things that make it spin. do you have to be 18 to be here? you'll know when i know.

Sunday, October 04, 2009

call me my love you can call me any day or night

Remember being a kid and living for Friday because not only did it mean another week of school was over, but also you got to catch up with the precocious Tanner family on Full House and Larry and his wacky cousin Balki on Perfect Strangers? Ah, yes, ABC's TGIF line-up was nothing short of inspired back in the day. I wouldn't know, of course, because I considered myself far too sophisticated for such fare in the late 80s. I was in college by then and into Bel Biv Devoe not Mr. Belvedere. I believe I knew one day I'd have children obsessed with Full House, so why take in more than necessary?

That doesn't mean I didn't love Fridays. I love Fridays! Who doesn't love Fridays? As I write this, it's Sunday, and we all know Sunday means two things - a new episode of Mad Men and the desire for it to be Friday. Well, I have the power to give you a little Friday as your new week starts! Please visit I Pick Pretty, where last Friday, Mel graciously profiled me in her Featured Blogger Friday post. There I give you an amuse-bouche of what I'm like. Did you just say I'm amazing? Yes, that's true. However, I don't get into that over there. Do you question my inspirations? Do you wonder what my favorite books are? Well, I'm not going to tell you here. You have to go there. See what I just did? I gave you some Friday! You're welcome!

When you're done - and that means leaving Mel a lovely comment - then please come back here and read the new post below. To those new here from I Pick Pretty, I hope you'll enjoy the comfortable surroundings, and will leave me a comment so I know you've been by.

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My oldest son turned 12 a few weeks ago. It's a brave new world living with a pre-teen. Our once semi-quiet home has transformed into an incoming call center of young girls phoning to speak to my son. My sweet boy speaks politely to each girl, including the one with an extreme case of short-term memory because she neglects to remember the many times I've asked her not to call at 6:30 a.m., Monday through Friday, when I grumpily answer the phone. I'm very proud of my son's good manners. However, it's clear by his routine use of monosyllabic responses, he's oblivious to the true intent behind some of the calls these girls are making - they think he's cute, and they want him to think they're cute, too.

Here's the thing about 12 year old boys - they don't think much is cute yet. Especially girls. At least that's the case with my particular 12 year old boy, and to be perfectly honest, based on the giggly girls calling here, I'm glad to be living with the Y chromosome during this new phase of life.

I do look forward to the day when my son no longer recoils in horror when I playfully ask him if he has a girlfriend, but right now, I'm OK with him still thinking the only kind of wrestling around with another person that's interesting is the kind that happens on WWE Monday Night RAW. This opinion was cemented for me earlier in the week after spending some time on Facebook and reading the updates of a 12 year old girl who attends our church. Last Monday, she changed her status from 'single' to 'in a relationship,' and updated her page with the mysteriously dreamy line "WOW! He's SOOOOOOO amazing!!" A few of her friends didn't agree, and soon the debate raged between those who posted "Glad your (sic) so happy!!!!!" and those who thought "If u say so..." Things became so heated it forced my young friend to update her page 11 minutes later with a plea for to those who didn't understand her choice to "...except (sic) the AMAZING things about him and don't reflect on the bad!!!!"

The discourse that followed taught me a few things. First, students should spend less time trying to bone each other and more time boning up on their spelling. Second, the rampant abuse of exclamation points needs to cease. Finally, study hall is the modern day Sex and The City. "WE DON'T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THE DANG GUY!!!!!!!!!! STOP MAKING US SOUND EVIL BECUZ WE DON'T HAVE BACKGROUND INFO!!!!!!!!" exclaimed the cynical middle school Miranda Hobbes. "U need to let her have her space! She can date whoever she wants!" a young, love defies all Charlotte York soothed.

The battle waged on forever, or in this particular case of young love, just a few days. By Thursday, my young friend returned her relationship status to 'single,' and her updates became triumphant female empowerment mantras the likes of which would be the battle cries of the uninhibited Samantha Jones. "WOW!!!!! I'm SINGLE and I LUV IT!!!!!!!" she wrote ("I knew that something was wrong with him. What did I tell u? I was right AGAIN!!! I think you should start listening to me," the young Miranda jabbed back). This was followed by a long string of updates championing her love of being single and how she "...wasn't waistin' (sic)(sigh...) any more time on boys!!!!" Where once I hoped to hear Journey's Separate Ways in my head while reading her Facebook page, I was now hearing the omnipresent lyrics of Beyonce's Single Ladies. "Life is full of jerks and that is all I have left to say," she concluded.

That may be my acquaintance's opinion of young love now, but in a thoughtful - and correctly spelled - comment, I assured her the day would come soon enough (though, honestly, at 12?!?) when she'd not think of boys as jerks. I also told her there was plenty of time to be in love. Preferably, though, that time is not between 6:30 a.m., every Monday through Wednesday.

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35 Comments:

Blogger Stone Fox said...

TGIF rocked. everyone (even those of you who weren't giant losers like myself and had plans on Friday nights) watched TGIF.

some commiseration: i myself have a couple of twelve-teen and thirteen year old nieces who are my facebook friends. what are they teaching in school? has spelling, grammar, english as a whole been dropped from the curriculum? it makes me crazy. and the teenage drama. oy, it makes me tired. one status can result in 38 comments. sigh.

Monday, October 05, 2009 12:21:00 AM  
Blogger CT Mom said...

I told my 12 year old NOT to call at 6:30 am. She doesn't listen to me either.

~lol

In all seriousness, she had her first heartbreak at Friday's dance when her crush danced with another girl. And I'll bet the boy is clueless that his actions had any impact at all. As I told her, it's only just beginning. I'm stocking up on Kleenex.

Monday, October 05, 2009 1:03:00 AM  
Blogger The Savage said...

You're pretty.

Monday, October 05, 2009 4:36:00 AM  
Blogger Under the Influence said...

Oh, to be 12 again. NOT!

Monday, October 05, 2009 8:13:00 AM  
Blogger Desmond Jones said...

Lord, have mercy. . .

We did the whole 'parents-of-a-teenaged-bundle-o-male-hotness' gig, and it was a monumental pain in the arse. Fortunately, that only applied to one of our boys (4M, who is 19 now, and on the last legs of his teenager-hood).

Now, alas, we have 14-year-old 6F, who isn't quite all the way to 'boy-crazy' yet, but is every bit the Teenaged Drama Queen. I can hardly contain my joy. . .

Monday, October 05, 2009 8:44:00 AM  
Blogger Chasity said...

I'm starting to feel kind of relieved to have boys, although I'm not looking forward to their teenage years. They'll both be taller than me, I'll have to make them sit when I yell. And also, 6:30 is just too darned early for this mom.

Monday, October 05, 2009 8:54:00 AM  
Anonymous DCUrbanDad said...

6:30 in the morning? I thought you were in the Midwest. Don't you have hens to feed and cows to milk?

Also I don't remember a girl calling me at 6:30. I am hurt.

Monday, October 05, 2009 9:17:00 AM  
Blogger Christina Lee said...

ugghh what I have to look forward to!

Monday, October 05, 2009 9:17:00 AM  
Blogger Cocotte said...

I'm not surprised to learn that you are a Facebook stalker of your kids' friends. I am too. It's amazing what you can learn online from kids too dumb to set their settings to private.

Monday, October 05, 2009 10:14:00 AM  
Anonymous Maggie said...

This post made me smile through and through. I don't have kids yet, but I stalk all my little cousins on Facebook. It didn't take long for me to realize that a bemused approach to their love lives is best balanced with a proactive approach to their spelling errors. The horror!

Monday, October 05, 2009 10:29:00 AM  
Anonymous TwoBusy said...

You never know when a 12yo misspelling romantic wannabe will suddenly evolve into a cultured and refined someone capable of dropping amuse-bouche into casual conversation.

Monday, October 05, 2009 10:57:00 AM  
Blogger Aunt Juicebox said...

Holy hoolies, if I have to hear the word "amazing" one more time, I might have to off myself. According to my 16 yr old daughter, everything is "amazing". Which kind of defeats the point of using the word, right?

My daughter is driving me up the wall though, she's so in love with her boyfriend, and he just can't live without her, and thank God he's as big a loser as the rest of his generation, because he's 18 and doesn't have a job or a car, so he can't pick her up and take her out on dates. I'm so not ready to be a grandma at 35, so even though she should be old enough to date, I don't let her. I guess the whole "being in love" with one boy thing saves her from multiple random encounters.

Monday, October 05, 2009 12:11:00 PM  
Blogger Brian o vretanos said...

!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, October 05, 2009 2:40:00 PM  
Blogger Pat said...

That's all I have to say is, I'm glad those teen aged years are over for my kids.

It's tough raising kids in this environment now. Yowser!

Monday, October 05, 2009 4:49:00 PM  
Blogger American in Norway said...

Oh my... I am not ready for this! but my son is...at 10.

As I read your post, I heard my mothers voice in my head..."nice girls don't call boys..." think she would be shocked that it is all fair game now...
Good luck! : )

Monday, October 05, 2009 5:03:00 PM  
Blogger Kate Coveny Hood said...

I love the S&TC comparison. Thank god we didn't have facebook in the 80s. I cringe when I think of what went on in my own pre-teen and teen soap opera back then...

Monday, October 05, 2009 5:45:00 PM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

just saw your interview at I Pick Pretty. you are an amazing writer and glad I found your site. you have just the right amount of snarkiness...I love!

Monday, October 05, 2009 6:10:00 PM  
Blogger Maggie May said...

i have a 12 year old too..and a 15 yr old so i can know what's around the corner :)

love your label

Monday, October 05, 2009 10:47:00 PM  
Blogger lime said...

i keep hearing from other mothers how my virile young limelet is considered a 14 yr old bundle-o-boy-hotness. so far she seems to have mostly dissuaded the hormonally charged girls his own age but he has his older sisters' friends also adding their two cents and he rather likes the attention from the older girls. ahem.

then there is the 16 yr old who one week tells me she doesn't see the point of worrying about having a boyfirned in highschool. the following week i hear she has "met her future husband." ok, then.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009 10:19:00 AM  
Blogger bernthis said...

I miss freakin zero about being 12 except okay, maybe the fact that I could change my mind every 4 seconds and no one gave me crap about it

Tuesday, October 06, 2009 10:41:00 PM  
Blogger just making my way said...

That last whole bit has left me in a shaking ball on the floor. Can't I just lock my kids up until they're 30? Would that be bad?

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 10:13:00 AM  
Blogger Nap Warden said...

OMG...I used to love TGIF. It rocked! What happened to it, is anything good on Fridays now?

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 2:16:00 PM  
Blogger Heather, Queen of Shake Shake said...

Friday night TV? I don't remember looking forward to Full House. I DO remember looking forward to Dallas, but then everything fast forwarded to the tween/teen years where hanging out at home on a Friday night was such a loser thing to do.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 4:44:00 PM  
Blogger Pat said...

I have an award for you on my blog. Stop by and pick it up, m'kay?

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 10:02:00 PM  
Blogger Aunt Becky said...

Oh Em Ge. U R my BFF.

Dude. I am so un-hip. I think I need a class on what's cool now. Shit, dude. Halp.

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 10:41:00 PM  
Blogger WhisperingWriter said...

I so remember TGIF. I believe Family Matters came first, then Boy Meets World...it was an awesome lineup :) And then after TGIF it was 20/20 which sometimes had very interesting stories..

Wednesday, October 07, 2009 10:42:00 PM  
Blogger The Grandpa said...

I came here from a comment you left Amy at Bitchin' Wives Club. Then I read the feature on I Pick Pretty. I'm really impressed by your blog and also, especially by your comments you left on writing at IPP. I'm going to definitely be back.

Thursday, October 08, 2009 8:00:00 AM  
Blogger Tuesday Girl said...

My 6 year old is wondering when she will fall in love so I assure you I can wait for her to be 12.

Oh man.

Thursday, October 08, 2009 9:37:00 AM  
Blogger The Stiletto Mom said...

I recently started following my BFF's son on fb. His updates are great but oh my, some of his friends. And now I'm getting the pressure over here to let Mr. C have a fb page at 10. Oh...I don't think so....

Young love is so grand and tragic though, isn't it?

Thursday, October 08, 2009 2:19:00 PM  
Anonymous Prom Queen said...

Love the "Sex in The City" comparison. Last night I drove 5 sixth grade girls to the bowling alley for a church gathering. The entire discussion was (a) boy hotness and (b) the you-know-what-girl-we-won't-call-her-that-in-front-of-your-mom who put a song for download on iTunes and now thinks she is ALL that. Drama, Drama, Drama.

Saturday, October 10, 2009 10:38:00 AM  
Blogger jennyonthespot said...

My friend and I we JUST TALKING about the youts on the FB last night... specifically the "relationship status" feature. I think that feature needs to be resricted for 18 and under... heck, let's just get rid of it altogether.

Sunday, October 11, 2009 12:46:00 PM  
Blogger for a different kind of girl said...

Stone Fox - Despite aging out of TGIF, I, too, was a giant loser with no plans on Friday nights.

CT Mom - Sigh...my heart breaks for your 12 year old! I remember how that feels. I was the girl who was friends with the girl boys wanted to date, so I soon discovered my role was helping my crushes get close to her. Sigh... I do not miss preteen heartbreak!

Savage - Thank you, but, to be honest, it all depends on the day. Or the hour. Sometimes the minute.

Under the Influence - Never again in a million years!

Des - I'm not sure my heart or my sanity could cope with a teenage girl in my house and all the angst that goes with it!

Chasity - My 12 year old is almost as tall as me now, except when he stands in front of me, the top of his head hits me in the nose, and I swear I can still smell that newborn baby smell! This growing up thing is not allowed!

DCUrban Dad - If it helps any, I don't remember any boys calling me at 6:30 a.m., either, and btw, I came inside from slopping the hogs to write this comment! :)

Christina Lee - Brace yourself!

Cocotte - It's a strange new world out there in the Facebook galaxy with the teens, isn't it. Honestly, it's one I'm a little fearful of when they inherit this one!

Maggie - Oh, the spelling and grammar! It rips at my former editor's heart and makes me break out in a sweat!

TwoBusy - I'm not entirely positive, but it feels like you're totally Don Drapering me over our high ball glasses...

Aunt Juicebox - I have long given the warning to my children that, as much as I love babies, I'm not prepared to be a grandma while they're still in their high school chemistry classes!

Brian - I know!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Pat - I think I'm in for an entirely different world when my son actually starts liking girls for being girls.

American in Norway - Nice girls are very, very bold these days!

Sunday, October 11, 2009 1:05:00 PM  
Blogger for a different kind of girl said...

Kate - I can't even imagine spilling my teenage angst out on Facebook back in the day. Reading my old journal entries is cringe-worthy enough!

Jennifer - I'm so glad you came over (and feel bad it took me so long to come back!), and definitely look forward to seeing your around!

Maggie May - Ah, so you've already been in the trenches a bit with this type of experience. I'm glad you're around to still tell the tale!

lime - Having no experience with boys and their take on relationships or heartbreak, I wonder how in the world I'm going to deal with things when they come home and tell me they've met the love of their life at 16. Based on the love of my life at that age, I shudder to think what my world would be like now!

bernthis - I miss that, plus being able to eat whatever I wanted without gaining weight in weird places and being able to sleep until 10:30 a.m., on the weekends. Other than that, no more, please!

just making my way - I think locking them away may have slightly less consequence than the odd science experiments I want to conduct on my children to make them stay the age they are now!
I suppose neither of us should do anything rash!

Nap Warden - Ha! I have no idea. I'm lucky if I can wrestle control of the television remote to check!

Heather - I definitely remember watching Dallas with my parents. sadly, beyond that, I remained a bit of a loser home on Friday nights!

Pat - m'kay! Thanks!

Aunt Becky - Trust me, bestie, I am so not hip enough to give a class on what's cool to you! I mean, come on, I hate Twilight, and that's apparently cool, so I think I must be flunking out on what's cool!

WhisperingWriter - I had a friend in college who made us record 20/20 on the Friday nights we'd actually go out and not be complete losers. There seems something so wrong in admitting that. Vive la Hugh Downs!

The Grandpa - Thank you very much! I appreciate you following me around the internet and for coming here, too! I feel I should warn you that sometimes, I just ramble and don't really know what I'm saying, but I'm glad you're giving it a try!

Tuesday Girl - Boys at that age are just far too interested in fart jokes and weird things to be in love, so I hope she can wait it out!

Stiletto Mom - I randomly said something to my 12 year old the other day about setting up a Facebook page for him, but now I'm kind of hoping he forgets, if for no other reason than just seeing his spelling on his homework is hard enough for me, I don't think I could bear it online, too!

Prom Queen - God bless the parents of pre-teen girls. I seriously think I may have the easier end of the bargain here!

Jenny - Based on what I've witnessed, these young'uns change their relationship status more often than they do clothes, which says a lot about the young girls I know on Facebook who are always buying new clothes!

Sunday, October 11, 2009 1:25:00 PM  
Blogger msprimadonna67 said...

Your twelve year old sounds a lot like my 12 year old. Girls are not so much on his radar yet--and I'm okay with that!

Sunday, October 11, 2009 10:05:00 PM  
Blogger for a different kind of girl said...

msprimadonna67 - I'd be happy if we can hold off on the young love drama for as long as possible, really!

Tuesday, October 13, 2009 1:43:00 PM  

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