I was on my way home yesterday. I turned off the main road and onto a side road on the last leg of my trip home.
Ahead of me I could see there was a car on the side of the road with its hazard lights flashing. As I got closer, I realized it was a brand new vehicle. It made me curious about what would be causing it problems already. When I got closer still, I realized it was actually moving down the side of the road at about 2 MPH.
And that's when I saw him.
There was a boy walking along in front of the car with his fingers laced behind his head, his elbows pressed up around his ears and his eyes cast toward the ground.
He was trudging.
"Oh, sweet friend," I thought. "Apparently you have been blessed with one of those rare mothers that actually MEANS what she says. Let me guess... you didn't believe her when she said if you touched your sister 'one more time' you were going to be walking home. Am I right?"
Trudge Boy needs to learn to pick up on some context clues, I'd bet.
Prior to the car actually being pulled over, his mom probably used the "I don't care who started it - you're going to finish it!" line. Or maybe it was the ever popular, "I'm not going to tell you again." Or how about, "She's younger than you. You need to be the more mature one and let this drop."
Yeah, I've heard it all before. Trudge Boy probably wouldn't believe it, but I actually spent 18 years of my life as a full-time professional child. I've been in a semi-retired state for the last 17 years or so. I know what I'm talking about here. I have been "in the thick of thin things". I know what it's like to be "grounded to within an inch of your life" and I lived to tell the tale! (I really don't know what that phrase means in general but in my childhood home it indicated Mom meant business!)
Maybe Trudge Boy is the oldest in his family and didn't have someone going ahead of him - blazing the trail. I'm the 2nd oldest in my family and my older brother did some blazing for the rest of us. Like the time he snuck out of the house after Mom told him he couldn't go to a party and Mom called the Highway Patrol and he was brought back home in a squad car. Yeah.... that was one of those times when the rest of us kids were sitting back and taking notes. "Note to self: Don't mess with mom!"
(Which reminds me that I don't think I ever properly thanked my brother for "taking one for the team" now and again. Probably saved the rest of us from some things. He's a good brother.)
Trudge Boy, you weren't cursed with one of those weak mothers who talks and talks but never does anything. Your mom is a woman of action. She's a woman you can follow. She's a woman you'll appreciate more as you grow up. Who knows, you might even thank her one day.
So, for future reference, Trudge Boy... watch for the clues. The "Don't make me pull this car over" is a warning shot across your bow, as it were. That means Mom has designated the entire vehicle as a "no fly zone". You'd best pay attention from that moment forward. Watch for the white knuckled fingers on the steering wheel when there isn't traffic around. Watch for that vein in the side of her neck - that's always a big indicator.
And for heaven's sakes if you haven't learned it yet, write it down and commit it to memory: "Don't mess with Mom".
You can thank me later.