Reading While Knitting

Nothing complicated; nothing too exciting, but yes, I do knit while I read. As well as during many other domestic activities.

Monday, June 30, 2008

A pretty fair day

Heh heh. I know the pun is allegedly the lowest form of humor, but I can't help it. I like them and many other obvious funny things.

So, on Friday, we scooped up all of our children, plus a friend for Thing 1, plus my sister and her kids, and we all went to the county fair. It's another summer ritual that my children are beginning to insist on.

And every year, I have the same range of reactions. First, it's incredibly hot. This year wasn't as hot as last year, but we had the added fun of air you could practically cut with a knife. I felt guilty for driving, guilty for breathing it even.

One of the things I most enjoy -- albeit not guilt-free (is anything, for someone with a brain?) -- is roller coasters. Preferably in the company of my sister, but I'll ride with anyone. That said, the ones at the fair always give me the collywobbles. I wonder if they're put together well. I wonder how far they've traveled and whether the folks tightening the bolts were on illegal substances. So at the fair, I want to love the coasters, I want to share them with my kids, and I'm worried. Of course, my children love the rides. As far as they're concerned, the county fair is an amusement park with rides, cotton candy, and a few animals their mother forces them to look at.

So I rode. I rode with anyone who needed an adult; I rode with people who just wanted company. I rode and rode and rode and rode, but not the rides I like, because the kids who are big enough to ride those were off riding them -- I rode anything the kids wanted to ride. Thing 2 said at one point, when I was shrieking with laughter while spinning backwards, "I didn't know mamas liked this kind of stuff," and I thought, "Oh honey. . . you have no idea."

There wasn't much shrieking, however, because mostly it was swinging. Over and over and over and over. I think Thing 4 and I went on the little swings about 73 times. I kept saying "Yes," because that was my mode for the day, but I discovered that I get tired of little swings.

I even get tired of big swings.

Especially when the midway features really loud, loud loud bad covers of '80s music. My ears, like my eyes, are quite tender.

Thing 4 revealed that she's much like her mother in her love of rides. I was pleased to note, when I saw this picture, that her cropped hair still looks okay to me. The operator of this ride was terrifically understanding. She allowed this little one to ride without getting off between rides. So she rode. And rode. And rode. She rode with cousins, she rode with siblings, she rode by herself. She just loved it. And we got to stand in the background and not ride, for which I, at least, was devoutly grateful.

That operator actually took a lollipop out of Thing 3's mouth so he could ride -- endearing her to me forever. He's not so jaded yet, so that even though he's just tall enough to ride the adult-sized swings -- will I ever get over the stomach-sinking feeling of watching them fly through the air? -- he's still able to enjoy a carousel.

So I have ideas for next year, based on this year's experiences. We need to stay home until after naptime, if anyone is napping. We need to bring the big stroller with a cooler and lots of half-frozen iced tea and lots of food. We need to save up our money, so it doesn't seem like such a shock to pay for everything. We should buy discounted tickets ahead of time. Maybe, just maybe, Eric and I should go alone for one day, so we can do the looking at tatting and petting baby cows stuff that missing makes me so cranky. We should definitely go when a bad band is playing so I can see them. I think I missed The Village People (!) this year. Rats.

I want the kids to appreciate the things that mean "Fair" to me, too, and they tried -- really they did. They were excited that their friend's duct tape shorts had won first prize and that my friend had won best in show for her yummy-looking pie, but . . . the loudness of what was marketed as "fair" overwhelmed any more contemplative pleasures.

And that, finally, may have been what really wiped me out.

My love for coasters doesn't overwhelm the setting in my brain that says "Fair=harvest festival" so when reality feels like Fair=loud, loud, loud "entertainment," and I see so many beautiful, really beautiful young women in all their glory, wearing more makeup than they need, in teeny skirts (funniest comment of the day was when spouseman nodded toward a lovely young blond thing in a scrap of camoflauge skirt, and said, "That makes me feel really patriotic"), and I realize that they're incredibly anxious, because, look at them, they're beautiful, and my kids are wildly overstimulated and I just want to wander around and look at the knitting and the quilts and eat homemade cake and maybe ride a few big coasters. . . well, it's a lot of expensive cognitive dissonance.

I'd rather go to an all-animal and knitting and pie fair and save the big bucks for a coaster park. But I will keep going back to this one -- maybe we'll enter things again and that will help -- because the kids enjoy it pretty thoroughly. See?



At 3:57 PM, Blogger Morenna said...

Yay Fair!! Sounds like a lovely, albeit perhaps overstimulating, day. I think half the thrill of fair rides is wondering whether or not they'll fly apart while you're on them.

At 6:15 PM, Blogger suzee said...

Yay for all that is the fair! It'll get better over the coming years, I promise. Some day, really, you will have indulgent and kind children who will make sure you get to see the quilts and knitted bits and will remember that dessert happens on the way out only and will laugh (uproariously) in the "Haunted Castle" with you and will even leave just as the fireworks are finishing instead of waiting for the very last pop.

Really. These things will happen.

In the meantime, enjoy your funny husband. That's a comment worth remembering.

At 5:37 AM, Blogger allisonmariecat said...

We love puns! I always do a little "Marge Simpson" chuckle when I make a bad pun. It entertains my husband. My husband has an alter ego we call "Bad Pun Man" who surfaces every few weeks for just an hour or two. Bad pun after bad pun follows.

The fair sounds...exhausting! I think you hit it with "expensive cognitive dissonance." I haven't been to a fair in ages, though. Maybe I should take Lilah before she doesn't let me look at the things I want anymore :)


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