Saturday, November 15, 2008

Mammas, Don't let your daughter's grow up to join the FSA

I'm back !

I've spent the last 48 hours on a cleaning spree. It only took a few a few days to tear down the asylum. I packed all the props into storage bins, and laid the corpses to rest in their coffins, but finding a place to store it all for the next 11 months was the real challenge. I checked into storage space, but just couldn't bring myself to spend $75.00 a month for storage. The mere thought of having to pay one. more. bill. was just too much. So Thursday, I finally worked up the energy to rearrange my basement to make room for it all; Which lead to a huge whole house cleaning binge, ending with cleaning Heather's bedroom in preparation for tonight - Her 12th Birthday sleep over celebration. Oh my God, what insanity !!!

Heather invited three of her girlfriends; Alexis, who lives next door, Ashton, a friend from school, and Chloe, another friend from school - who (from my perspective) just doesn't quite seem to fit in with the other girls. (I'll explain further in a minute.) As you can imagine, Jake was not thrilled with the idea of spending the evening surrounded by his little sister's giggling friends, so he asked if he could have a friend spend the night too. One friend turned into two, and now I have a house filled with 7 teens, (four girls, three boys) and of course, five dogs. I'm just praying that the Fire Marshall doesn't show up to take a head count - I'm sure that I'm over the maximum occupancy for a suburban duplex.

This afternoon, Heather came home from school with Chloe. I had heard a few things about Chloe, but Heather had never invited her over. The minute I laid eyes on her, I knew all I needed to know about her. I may be 46 years old, but you never forget the "Chloes" that you've known from 6th grade. (except when I was in 6th grade, her name was Sandy - Sandy Kinnaw) Chloe is just like Sandy. She has pale blond hair, bright blue eyes, a china doll face, and the emerging body of Cindy Crawford. She's cute and perky, and WAY too confident.

Most people are a little overwhelmed by our dogs at first, but Chloe was thrilled, and excitedly carried on about how much she LOVES dogs! When people have that kind of immediate response to my dogs, it always makes me nervous. Those are the kind of people who assume that my dogs will automatically love them too, and they don't give them the respect and space that they deserve. I want to say, "Uh . . . excuse me, but this is a PACK of dogs with a combined weight of over 350 pounds. They LIVE here - and you don't. Do the math Einstein." Fortunately, my dogs are pretty good at suffering fools, especially if they're kids.

I wasn't really expecting Heather's guests to start showing up until 5:30, so I was caught a little off guard when Heather brought Chloe home from school with her like a stray puppy. Before I could say much of anything, Heather stuck the telephone in my face and said,
"You need to talk to Chloe's dad, his name is Van."
I gave Heather an exasperated look (she knows how much I hate it when she does that) and took the phone. I introduced myself, and gave him a quick run down of the planned activities.
He said, "Well, Chloe kind of sprung this on me . . . I normally don't let her do stuff like this on the spur of the moment . . . "
I thought to myself, 'Really? Is that why she showed up at my house with a back pack, a tote bag full of clothes, and a sleeping bag? Where did you think she was going with all that stuff when she left for school this morning?' But I bit my tongue and stayed silent. Obviously, she had her daddy wrapped around her little finger, and this sort of thing happened more than he'd like to admit. He got my address, and asked me to have Chloe "check in" with him in the morning. By the time I ended the phone call, the girls had disappeared. No reason for them to hang around waiting for "permission," the phone call was just a formality, she knew that she would get her way. Why else would she have come so prepared?

Roy took the girls to go pick out Heather's birthday present ( a guitar) and her birthday cake and ice cream. Everything was going fine until Jake, Quentin, and Patrick came home. Chloe's eyes literally lit up. I didn't introduce Jake and his friends to Heather's friends because, the whole purpose behind Jake having his friends over, was so that the guys could entertain themselves with "guy" stuff, while the girls did "girl" stuff. It took less than five minutes before Chloe was calling their names and following behind them. All through dinner, cake and ice cream, and gift opening, Chloe was right in the midst of them, doing her best to get their attention and dazzle them with her cute smile and adorable little hair flip technique.

I was impressed with my son's discernment. Jacob had her pegged from the moment she smiled in his direction. (He looked over at me and rolled his eyes.) However, Patrick and Quentin are uh . . . easily distracted. They played right into her hand.

Every time Heather and the other girls planned to do something, they had to go track Chloe down. Didn't take them long to figure out that she would be found with the boys. I think Chloe finally got tired of her flirting being interrupted, so she decided to take charge. She gathered all the girls together to play "make over/dress up." As soon as Chloe had all four of them looking like five dollar hookers, she disappeared to seek out the boys - again. By that time, Jacob had grown bored with watching his friends make asses of themselves over a 12 year old girl. Jake got unusually quiet and took his friends to his room to go to bed. Since then, the only one of the boys that has wandered downstairs has been Quentin, the red head, insecure one. He said he wasn't sleepy yet and went into the kitchen to listen to the ipod. Of course, Chloe pulled up a chair next to him while the girls settled in to watch a movie in the living room. I guess even Quentin can add two and two because, he suddenly became sleepy and went upstairs. She pouted, and came to join the girls.

Now that the boys are gone and things have quieted down, I think Heather is starting to see Chloe's true colors. Alexis and Ashton are already asleep on the couch, and Heather is doing her best to be friendly and polite, but she keeps yawning while Chloe brags about all the cool people she knows, and the awesome places she's been. Something tells me that I should stay up until I'm absolutely certain they're all asleep. I have no doubt Chloe will be the last one out.

When I was 19 or 20 years old, I worked as an optician at the local mall. When business was slow, me and a co-worker would pass the time by people watching. Of course, at the mall, a large number of those people were teenagers, just hanging out and meeting friends. Girls like Chloe were easy to spot. We had a code name for them: FSA - Future Sluts of America.

I have to admit, I'm a little surprised that my daughter invited an FSA to her party. I'm sure that Chloe is one of the more popular girls at school, but I really hope that they don't become close friends. If it's a choice between being popular, and being true to herself (and basically, that's what it comes down to) I hope Heather is smart enough, and courageous enough, to choose the latter. As a woman, who (barely) survived the tortures of public school, there is a part of me that feels . . .guilty (?) for wishing that fate on my own daughter. I remember how painful it was to watch the "popular" girls, and know that I wasn't one of them. At the time, I would have given anything to be in that elite circle. And I have no doubt I would have been good at it - I could have been as bitchy, snobby, and slutty as any of them. But let's face it, it IS a very elite group - 90% of us were either hanging on at the fringes of that circle, or completely nonexistent to them. If it weren't for the majority, the "real" people, they wouldn't even exist.
We create our "idols" because, they are something that we are not. Sometimes it takes years to figure out that there is a very good reason for not being like them, and that being yourself is a better thing.

By the way, I can't really say what ever happened to my 6th grade Chloe - Sandy Kinnaw. When we graduated 6th grade, we went to middle school. Sandy hooked up with the hottest ninth grader in the school, captain of the football team, Dave Phalen. They went steady for half a year, then one day the whole school was buzzing. Sandy was crying in the girls bathroom because, she found out she was pregnant. The next day, Dave had a new girl friend, and Sandy just disappeared. Seriously, she never came back to school. There were rumors that she had an abortion and transferred to another school, that she ran away from home, that her parents sent her away, that she was too humiliated to come back, so her parents moved to another state. Now, I'm not saying that being a slut, and getting knocked up, is the ultimate sin, or that she deserved it. I managed to find myself in the same predicament two years later. The difference is, I KNOW what happened to me and where I am now.

Well, It's late. Enough of this crap. I need to get some sleep. Good night.

4 howled back:

christopherc said...

I am often amazed at the self deprivation one will put one's self through for popularity. I'm glad there are those of us who are quirky and odd ball enough to keep the world on track and interesting. As for being popular... look at yourself now; with an international fan club and all.

and it only took you 30 years to get here!

-C

sparsely kate said...

Some girls learn very early on what it takes to get a lot of attention and they seem to crave the attention..their self worth can be measured on how many people they drag around on their little finger.

But it's sad really, in the end. I hope Heather does make a 'true' friend but I also feel a bit sorry for the Chloe's in this world because in the end...they aren't going to be much happy.

Auburn haired artist said...

C : I am pretty awesome, aren't I?
Mel: I think this kiddo was born with it !

jasminharrington said...

A wise woman once said to me how she usd to think of the sluts as just that but she learned that the little girls who behave "slutty" are the girls who really just need someone to love them. I believe that woman should do just that.