6 a.m. Phone rings. Computery Speak-and-Spell voice. “Wake up, Farty McFarts-A-Lot. You've got stuff to do. Like farts and stuff.”
The culprits behind this unconventional electronic wake-up call? My two sons: Benjamin and Elliott Katz, eight and six respectively.
7:30 a.m. Drive the kids to school. Normally, I don’t do this; my husband does. But Brad broke his ankle last week walking down a drizzle slick 31st Street. Chicago potholes show no mercy.
The conversation during the ride from our house in West Ridge to their school in Albany Park has as many metaphorical intersections as literal ones.
Elliott: “Mom, why don’t you have a normal job?”
Me: “Like what?”
Benjamin: “Like an inventor. Why don’t you invent something? Find something that bothers you in the world and fix it. What bothers you?”
Me: “Poverty. Pollution. Mitt Romney.”
I make the turn from Peterson onto California and head south, exactly where the conversation seems to be headed.
Elliott: “Pollution is easy. Make a serum and BAM. Pollution’s gone. (Gleefully) Then…just…plant a tree!”
Benjamin: “Yeah. Or invent a water-powered engine. That would stop pollution.”
I take California to Foster. Foster to Kedzie. Kedzie to an alley short-cut, riddled with potholes. The career counseling doesn’t stop.
Elliott: “Invent a remote control where if you push the button it buys what you want right from the TV…so you don’t have to memorize 1-800 numbers!”
Me: “I think that technology is coming out. You’re smart, Elliott!”
I drop Ben and Elliott at Edison Regional Gifted Center, blow them kisses and head the opposite direction to Deerfield.
9-5:30 p.m. Think of ways to sell more tequila, bourbon, vodka and rum to American diners in casual chain restaurants. Engage in “product research.” Eat trail mix.
5:45 p.m. Inspired by the morning’s conversation, I decide Benjamin and Elliott are right. I DO need to invent something. That (re)invention? Me.
About the author: Bios give Amy Spizzo Restless Leg Syndrome. She works in advertising and lives to laugh. She's ecstatic she has funny kids. Humor her at email@example.com or friend her on Facebook.