Home > Monday Minute > Monday Minute: Squishy Shoes And Dark Humor, A Tutorial By James

Monday Minute: Squishy Shoes And Dark Humor, A Tutorial By James

So today was a bit of a doozy. On the plus side, adaptive tennis is awesome and James was super excited about it all the way until bedtime. On the downside, Adam gagged on a fruit snack and threw up all over the cafe table and floor, our stroller, backpack, ergo, my shirt, shoes, hair and himself about 30 minutes before it was time to go home.

One entire bag of wipes and horrifying public restroom sponge bath later, the kid (and cafe floor) looked like new – thank goodness I bring a change of clothes for each child all summer. The backpack was destined for the garbage and the stroller and I were due for a scrub down as soon as we got back home – you know, the 3 subways, 10 flights of stairs and 90 minutes it would take to get back to Manhattan from tennis. Needless to say, despite my best efforts it was a mortifyingly gross trip, but in retrospect, perhaps also a little bit funny.


James is in italics, my responses are in bold italics, my other kids are in bold.


M: Adam threw up all over the place at tennis. (so much for “hello”)

Whoa! Gross (James has a huge smile on his face and begins to make fake retching noises loudly on the sidewalk, Adam immediately joins in, laughing)

Stop it right now. Do you want him to throw up again?

Gross!!! (laughing)

It was really gross, it’s not funny. It’s really bad when someone gets sick, you should feel sorry for them.

M: He threw up everywhere! In the stroller and the backpack and on the floor!

Whoa – that’s disgusting! (still barely containing his glee)

Enough, guys – so how was tennis?

Awesome, I think the coach was really impressed with my skills.

Oh yeah?

Yeah he thought my serves were huge.

Wow, that’s great! Did you make any friends?

Yeah, but just three friends so far. Mom, what’s that noise?

What noise?

That squishing noise.

Oh, my shoes.

Why are you shoes squishing?

Because they’re wet – I had to wash them in the sink at tennis.

Oh because those shoes have barf in them?! (two young guys passing by give us a wide berth at this comment)

Well, I hope not. So did you play back and forth with your friends or just do serves?

Mom, your shoes are still squishing.

I know – please try to ignore it, we have a long way to go. Tell me about tennis.

It was great – it’s my favorite sport!

Really? Do you like it better than soccer?

Hey, there’s some more barf on the stroller over there. (several people turn to look at my stroller)

M: Gross! (goes to get out of the stroller)

Margaret, get back in the stroller right now. You can’t run around on the subway platform.

M: There’s barf in there!

See, Mom? It’s right there!

(I throw a towel into the seat) There, it’s gone. Please get in right now.

Are you standing still so your shoes don’t make noise?

No, I’m standing still because we’re on the subway platform waiting for the train.

(explaining to two teenage girls sitting on the platform with shopping bags) She has barf in her shoes and it’s squishing like this – “sqqqweeech, sqqqqweeech”

James enough! (both girls look at me, smiling like he’s making a joke but then faltering when they see the panic in my eyes)

A: I want to get down too!

You can’t get down because you barfed on my shirt so now you have to stay in the ergo because I’m in an undershirt.

You’re not wearing a shirt?! (many, many more stares)

I just have my tank top on because Adam got barf on my shirt – James, please keep it down.

M: Mom put her shirt in a bag because it had barf alllllll over it.

Gross! (laughing)

Guys, please be quiet. Look, here’s the train – James watch the gap so you don’t trip.

Okay mom. Watch your step so your shoes don’t squish out any barf.

Thanks, James.

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