I had to stop at the grocery after work to get cheese for quesadillas and yogurt-covered raisins so the boys would stop whining about not having any. With just a handful of things to pick up, I decided to forgo the cart and just grab a basket. About 20 feet into the store, I remembered why this was a bad idea: wandering toddlers, slow-poky preschoolers and grabby-handed boys.
But, I am nothing if not determined, so I hustled the boys along. This worked as long as I wasn't looking at anything. The second I stopped to pick out an avocado or check out the prices of shredded cheese, the boys scattered across the aisle, blocking the rush of after-work shoppers. The retirees gave me the wide smiles that so clearly say, "ENJOY THEM! The time goes so fast!" but a grumpy old man practically growled at them and the harried mothers without their kids in tow and young professionals in too-high heels were less than amused. One woman was particularly horrified when Beastie dropped his free cookie in the middle of the produce section, shouted, "MY COOKIEEEEEE!" and then picked it up and ate it. I wanted to say, "Look, he's eaten worse," but figured it wasn't worth the effort.
The highlight of the trip came in the dairy aisle, the end and true destination of our trip. I grabbed the shredded cheese and tried to hurry the boys down the row and over to the registers. A perfectly coiffed mom with tidy children tucked into one of the fun car carts I never let my boys get was perusing the organic yogurt section. As we approached them, Beastie started doing some weird stomping walk and shouting, "DAMN! DAMNY, DAMN, DAMN!" A slow, meandering stomping walk. Loud, pretty obviously profane singing.
First, I tried to ignore him. But when even the perfect little blond children, he in wire-rimmed glasses and a button-up plaid shirt and she in a pristine white cardigan over summer dress, looked askance at my little Beastie, I figured I better do something. I tried to hurry him and, as we walked past the concerned little children and their mother, I said, more loudly than necessary, "Gammy, gammy? Are you singing about grandma?" I'm pretty sure the mother didn't buy it, but it was worth a try.
We finally got past them and neared the end of the aisle, out of ear shot. The Lad still was singing his cuss-word song. I was so focused on him, I didn't notice the store clerk stocking shelves at the end of aisle -- the one we were walking past as I hissed, "We do NOT say that word, Beastie. That is a word for mommas and daddies and fairies."
I notice the clerk then, because he literally spun around and stared at me. He had no way of knowing that cuss words are fairy words in our house because of Tinkerbell's penchant for calling people silly asses. (Incidentally, that's another swear word The Lad has shouted in the grocery store.) Stopping to explain would have taken longer than getting the hell out of the store. My potty-mouthed child, The Boy and I fled.
At least we got the cheese we needed.