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Friday, June 12, 2009

How to entertain your kids on the airplane and embarass yourself in one easy step

This post can stand alone, but there is history behind the peeing baby. If you want to fully appreciate the history you need to read the Smithsonian posts here and here.


Returning from our recent trip to California I had to fly home with the four girls by myself. It shouldn't have been a big deal as the girls are self-sufficient these days... Except we forgot to Redbox (if you don't do this you should really check it out!) some new movies for the DVD players... And the batteries for the DVD players couldn't seem to hold a charge... I sighed to myself as I mentally transitioned from 7 hours of leisurely reading and napping as the girls slipped into a movie-induced coma... to playing 9,465,782 games of hangman.


In a fit of hangman desperation I whipped out the ubiquitous Sky Mall magazine. My kids love animals so sent them on a scavenger hunt through the magazine. They were to make a list of all the different animals they could find and whoever found the most would win a prize. The kids flipped furiously through the magazine eagerly making their lists. My kids are a little bit competitive with one another. The prospect of a prize on top of that? I figured I could get at least half an hour out of this.


I spent the next 20 minutes alternating between working on my to-do list and trying to figure out what in the heckity-heck I was going to award the winner as a "prize." I had nothin'. I was so caught up in my musings that at first I didn't even notice my 7 year-olds laughing. And then I heard it:


"naked baby... giggle, giggle... peeing... giggle, snort... whisper, whisper.... pickle... little pickle!"


As a sick feeling of deja vu flooded over me I peeked over to see what they'd found and had to choke back a groan of dismay. The giggling was getting louder. The grandmotherly woman in front of us who was so taken by my children and their impeccable manners (her words, not mine) at the beginning of the flight turned around in her seat to see what it was that had my twins doubled-over with laughter.


My spidey-senses kicked in as I realized what was about to happen, and I hastily tried to snatch the Sky Mall magazines away from the girls. I wasn't quick enough. I only got Emily's. The elderly woman was half out of her seat and fully turned around and facing us as she smiled benevolently at my girls. Before I could fully gather my wits she asked, "What's so funny you little imps?"


Abby and Emily, being identical twins, occasionally do this stereotypical tag-team thing where they talk fast and finish each other's thoughts in rapid-fire succession. It happens fast and there is literally no break in the conversation. This time it went something like this:



Abby: (holds up Sky Mall magazine page 80 to display the nearly four foot fountain of a peeing naked baby. Just like we saw at the Smithsonian)

Emily: It's a naked baby...

Abby: It's a peeing naked baby...

Emily: He's peeing in the pool!

Abby: He's peeing with his little pickle!

Emily: Little pickle, little pickle!!!

Both: giggle, snort, giggle (they're pretty slap-happy at this point)


I finally snapped out of it and silenced them, but I was a little late. My spidey-senses are getting seriously rusty. I thought spidey-senses are supposed to be ageless... The grandmotherly woman with the benevolent smile had magically transformed into an icily judgemental old biddy. As she turned away and took her seat her expression made it clear what she thought of the girls. I made eye contact with a businessman seated diagonally a row ahead of us. He winked conspiratorially and I smiled weakly in return.


And then, just as I took a few literal and figurative deep breaths and wrapped myself in my rapidly fraying dignity, a very, very bad smell, like a malfunctioning port-a-potty smell, made it's presence undeniably known on the plane. One of my other daughters (ahem, Rachel)... who was wearing headphones.... and listening to music... loud music... addressed her sister, with whom she was sitting in a row across the aisle from the twins and myself, in a booming voice and said,


"Oh, man! Hannah was that you?! Do you have gas?! That smells bad. BAD! Jeez Hannah, are you sick?!" And she would have gone on. In a very. loud. voice...


Did I mention she was LOUD? I was trying to get her attention and tell her to pipe down, but she was in a different row and oblivious to me... Apparently we need to work on voice moderation while listening to our iPods. I'm fairly certain the entire back half of the plane heard the full play-by-play of both the pickle scene as well as the stink scene.... The businessman who had been winking at me conspiratorially less than a minute ago? He shot a little of the Diet Coke he was sipping out his nose. Seriously. I really hope he didn't dirty his tie.


Oddly, the next five hours proceeded without incident.
And yet I never quite relaxed again...
NOTE: Hannah has not read this yet, but I am certain she would want you to know that she was not the source of the "odor" on the plane. We were seated near the lavatory, though. I'll leave it at that.

67 comments:

Tsquared417 said...

What is wrong with people? I would have been THRILLED to have the entertainment if I had been the old biddy....and I LOVE the businessman!! :)

Thanks for the laugh!!

Little pickle..hee hee....

parentingBYdummies said...

Hey! Would love you to add me to your blogroll! Think you may have visited me a LOOOOOONG time ago, but my blog looked different. Either way, I love yours too and I read you all the time, in secret:)

The Crazy Suburban Mom said...

hahaha! needed a laugh this morning :)

tracy

TKW said...

Now what kind of curmudgeon doesn't think a little pickle is hilarious?

Your plane trips, alas, sound a lot like mine.

Megryansmom said...

Sounds like the old lady hasn't had a view of a pickle little or any other kind in way too long. I would have been spewing Diet Coke everywhere. How is that NOT funny?

Tammy Howard said...

There is nothing not funny about a little pickle peeing in the pool.

Nothing.

And fart humor? Please.

Your kids are a treat.

Semi-Slacker Mom said...

That is why we do NOT fly! Only mine would be 10x worse!

We call it a pickle too!

LadyFi said...

Your kids would get on with my kids like a house on fire! Our kids also like burping their ABCs...

Nicole said...

lol Hilarious! I, personally, would have been laughing. Kids say the silliest things.

Hit 40 said...

I thought you were going to say that you upset the business man with the gas...

I have never known a guy to care if someone passed gas. He probably ripped one to join your girls.

Good work making him bust some coke out of his nose!!

Screw the old woman. I wonder if she ever really had kids?

Pam said...

Too funny! Thanks for my first laugh out loud moment of the day. Traveling with kids is such a joy. But, I promise, it does get better. My girls are 14 and 16 and for at least the last 5 years I've been able to read and nap to my heart's content on planes. Hang in there.

Rachel said...

Oh my gosh, it could have been soooo much worse! And that old biddy? That smell was probably HER!

Cairo Typ0 said...

That's nothing! If your kids' worst offenses were saying amusing things then they're far, far, far better than 90% of the children i seen on most planes.

Chair kicking, screaming, throwing... and that's just the parents! :p

Meg said...

Why is it that people like you aren't on the plane when I fly? I always have to sit next to the fat guy with velour jogging suit and too much cheap cologne and the screaming baby with the apparently deaf mother.

And how is it that you always seem to find these old bitty hags that hate children who act like....gasp....children! The nerve! ;)

Mary K Brennan said...

Tell your kids I'm taking them on my next flight. I haven't flown in about 8 years due to anxiety. I think I just found the cure.

Young Mom/Wife said...

I know you were mortified when this occurred, but I couldn't stop laughing! I probably would have reacted the same way the business man had. You have to love young kids that tell the truth. ;)

~Thought's By Dena~ said...

once again too frikkin funny....its got to be so much fun in your house!!!! heheh "little pickle" hehehe

beth said...

so so funny! i thought it was just my boys obsessed with bodily functions. so glad to see that other people's children are too!

Undercover-Princess said...

I've already had like...60 oz of water today and you go and post something that has to do with WATER, PEEING, POOLS, and is hilarious?! You are cruel.

Jane! said...

I hope I never get too old to find pickles and gas hilariously funny.

I know it's worse when it's your own kids but you just have to keep telling yourself "I will probably NEVER see ANY of these people EVER again."

And then you should run off to join a cloistered convent to insure you don't.

parentingBYdummies said...

Please ignore any strange comments you may have received from me recently (see above). For some reason I am quite possibly going crazy...

Riddle Girl said...

I would have loved to sit near them on a plane and giggle right along with them.
What a funny and FUN bunch of girls you have!

Kristina P. said...

I think I would be constantly on edge, dealing with kids on a plane. I think Kids on a Plane is way scarier than Snakes on a Plane. Samuel L. should maybe tackle that movie.

for a different kind of girl said...

Ha! This makes me want to say 'girls will be girls!' Then I wonder if my coworker was on that flight...

:)

thedomesticfringe said...

This has GOT TO BE one of THE FUNNIEST posts I've read!

I'm hysterical. I only wish I were there in person.

I'm tweeting your post. Thanks for the entertainment!

-FringeGirl

Grant said...

How to entertain the family on a plane? Child porn. Okay, I got it. Thanks for the lesson.

Personally, I prefer being shipped in the cargo hold of a C-130 - no crying babies, no airline food, and the lack of cushioning makes it feel like you're surfing.

faemom said...

The grandmotherly woman must not have had kids. Because that was funny! Then again my grandma was very upset that Evan knew the word vagina and was sure he had one.
Aren't you glad you have a blog to write this?

D said...

Wow. What are the chances that your girls would run into the Mannequin Piss twice in the span of what three months.

That's funny.

CynthiaK said...

That was great. You have the best travel stories!

Hillbilly Duhn said...

HALARIOUS!!! That would have been entertaining as all get up. I would have been giggling too.

Missy said...

There is nothing better than traveling with children! LOL

WhisperingWriter said...

Hilarious. That would have cracked me up if I were on the plane with you. I could use any type of distraction because I HATE to fly. Every weird jolt makes me positive that the plane is going to crash and we're all going to die.

I'll be flying with my kids in a few weeks. I'm nervous. My son is old enough to entertain myself but my daughter is two and..well..she's two so that's basically enough.

Susie said...

Too funny!!

ScoMan said...

I laughed all the way through this post. I'm sure this wasn't your favourite experience ever, but I'm glad you were able to share it with us and find some comfort in the knowledge you would be entertaining others.

insider53 said...

Nobody threw up... you got off easy.lol

Helene said...

I guess it would've been unrealistic to ask one of the flight attendants to open the door and let you off the flight...mid-air.

So this is what I have to look forward to when flying with my children in the near future?? What's worse....a 5-day treck across the country in a mini-van or a 6-hr flight? I think both would be disastrous and surely send me to an early grave.

Debrae64 said...

Thanks so much for this post! I needed a laugh tonight. This is priceless....

Zeemaid said...

first of all.. you are an amazing woman to travel with four kids on a plane.. BY YOURSELF!!!

2ND... you gotta love kids and their sense of humour. That grumpy old lady obviously hadn't seen a little pickle in a while. *LOL*

Merryheart said...

ROTFL! Thanks, I needed that.

Blessings,
Merryheart

Paging Doctor Mommy said...

Oh geez... I truly wish I could have been on that flight. That was freakin' hilarious. That would have been better entertainment than purchasing the in-flight movie!
And by the way, you are a sheer genius for coming up with the contest with the Sky Mall magazine!

Stesha said...

The old biddy was the source of your smell.

Hugs and Mocha,
Stesha

lizspin said...

Yup! It was the old biddy in the airplane with the stink bomb!

FranticMommy said...

Ha! If it was me witnessing that, I'd be saving for a blog! Great story!

Jen said...

If I was on that plane with ,and I so with that I was, I would have died laughing. This is priceless stuff, just priceless.

Suzy said...

If that was the real Mannequin Pis in Brussels, Belgium, you can tell your kids it's one of the most famous statues in the world. The one at the Smithsonian is not the one in Brussels. I've actually been dragged to the real one twice. Belgium is kinda boring.

zelzee said...

I would love to travel with you on a plane. But you would probably send me to another seat, as I would get the kids all wound up.

Christie-A Work In Progress said...

That was so funny I almost became the peeing baby! Kids...gotta love 'em. If they weren't like this, none of us would have blogs

Pop and Ice said...

This post has me feeling better already! I think it's the first time I've laughed in a few days. You've even made my ears pop....and I'm on level ground!

ck said...

And to think it all started at the Smithsonian...this is what happens when you witness real art instead of a gang bust at the mall with me. Next time you might want to come with us to Tysons instead...

Court said...

How creative are you? Scavenger hunt through a magazine, I would have never thought of that!

Zip n Tizzy said...

I love the twin bond. I've always been fascinated by that. Hope they keep going like that forever.
Sounds like the business man had much too good a sense of humor to be stuck in a tie anyway.

K said...

Flying with kids is such an adventure!

MamaHen Em said...

Too, too funny! I laughed out loud! We have a miniature of that little statue from when we saw it in Belgium and my kids also call it the naked peeing baby!

So glad I stumbled by!

Gibby said...

I'm BACK!!!

As we just got off the plane a day ago (which was delayed by 3 hours because it was BROKEN even though we were sitting on it), I can appreciate. And really, WHY do people turn around and look and talk to your kids in the first place? What? Have they never seen kids before?

Hello Anon Mom!

The Blonde Duck said...

I would have been dying laughing.

Cheffie-Mom said...

LOL! *SNORT LOL! This post is priceless! What would we do without moments like these?!

Kate said...

Kids, what do we do with them. They always find a way to embarrass parents. Just remember you will look back on it and laugh and laugh.

Grand Pooba said...

Ha! That little peeing pickle rears it's ugly head again!

Tee hee hee.

Hit 40 said...

A new baby!!!!!! So exciting :-)

resplendentlife said...

Oh, that was too funny! Tooo funnyyy!!!

smitty13 said...

This is one for the record books!!!!

the ungourmet said...

Oh, I am dying for you right now! How Completely Embarrassing!

Lisa (Jonny's Mommy) said...

And I thought I've had embarrassing moments. Not yet like this. But this was a classic...and the old biddy made it because she was such a stinkin' prude over it all! :-)

Great story!

Thumbelina said...

Hilarious. Never mind snorting dietcoke down your nose... why is my tea all over the screen?

Over from David's. Congrats on POTD.

Moannie said...

Made me snort my coffee down my nose [it is not a good feeling]

Here from POTD, congratulations.

msprimadonna67 said...

I'd share a plane with you and yours anytime. I'd crack up if all that was going on next to me. I'm sure you'd crack up, too, at the inevitable shenanigans of my crew. People who can't appreciate the natural humor of watching a kid react to his/her world amaze me.

peewee said...

you TOTALLY missed your opportunity during the 'stink" moment to point at the old lady while holding your nose closed.

next time. I think you need to take 'mean' lessons form me. ah well. keep reading my blog. It's gotta rub off on you EVENTUALLY!