Screw you, ice cream man! You’ve ruined more than one perfect family dinner. We’re sitting around the table, eating and chatting about our day when we hear you first in the distance. The kids’ eyes light up and I look at my husband. The song grows louder and we know you are on our block. The kids’ heads jerk to look at us earnestly. “Can we?!!!” they ask with puppy eyes.
“No you haven’t finished your–”
The crying starts. The night is over. We were just laughing and enjoying ourselves and now the kids are angry. We are mean, cruel parents. We NEVER let them get it (they forgot the ice cream from Saturday). Screw you, man!
It’s spring and it seems you’re everywhere. You’re outside school pickup, idling. Your truck’s exhaust stings my nose as I walk by. The kids whine as they pass you. It’s a Monday and no Mom wants to give in yet, not when we know you’ll be here four more times this week. You sit outside the playground and you drive by our tee-ball game. Stop it. Please!
My kids are addicted, that’s clear, but I am too. I hear your music and I picture a vanilla cone with sprinkles. One time, when I was pregnant with my middle child. I stopped your truck twice while on a walk with the dog. I bought two cones in twenty minutes for myself. I’m not proud of that. You double-backed on purpose. You knew I was weak.
No one likes that horrible song on repeat. No one wants your hot exhaust in their face. This is our neighborhood, our home, and you weren’t invited! Besides, I’m trying to keep my diet. Go somewhere else! Please!
Christi Terjesen (@christiishere) is the mother of three lively boys in New York. She keeps her sanity through daily walks, expensive wine, and good books. Check out her blog, Mental Stimulation for Moms and her Long Island playgrounds blog.