I will say it and yell it and scream it to the mountaintops until someone talks me down with a gin and tonic and a ham and cheese croissant. Our parents had it so much easier back in the day of standard, un-hipster bell-bottoms and Red Dye #2. Back when Andy Gibb was God’s gift to coke whores and Twinkie’s were a sixth food group there were no car seats or baby monitors or forced, creepy play dates or PG-13 movies. Our parents had jobs that paid well enough for them to buy a perfectly suitable house in a great area and send our little, lucky asses to a public school that gave a shit about education and had enough funding to provide P.E. AND art AND music at no extra cost to the parents. Do you see where I am going with this?
Now, it is a race to the middle with parents vying for limited spaces in charters and magnets and oddly expensive private schools that may or may not have their very own uniformed drug cartel roaming the halls at recess and selling small bags of happiness to their own kind. The publics are choking from budget cuts and the teachers are overwhelmed and underpaid with classroom sizes ballooning like Kirstie Alley at a Home Town Buffet. The privates just keep increasing their tuition cap so every parent that can afford to send Little Mikey Likes It to an elite romper room feels good about their choice and bad for the rest.
I, by no means, am taking sides or judging anyone here except myself, a confused and out-of-work mom-o-phobe who sleeps with ear plugs, eats pasta standing up and cries while watching Louie. I am simply spitting my opinion into the wind and waiting for the hardened loogie to come right back at me with an answer and a prayer. I want the best for my kid and for his exceptional friends. I want them to all be together until 12th grade when they graduate with honors and all hug their parents and go off to Ivy League schools and change the world, like they changed us.
But living in a city like Los Angeles with its massive debt and hilariously absurd housing costs and boxes of identical nose jobs and acres of silicone boobs and barely breathing public schools does not bode well for the fantasy that I am currently playing in my head. The dream of having my son run circles around beautifully kept public athletic fields while expertly playing the Obo to Pythagorean Theorem’s second concerto in E minor without his virginal, angelic eyes every taking in a face lift or a cheek implant is the stuff of movies.
And no, I will never hear the words, “Now playing.”