If there is one thing worse than making a complete arse of yourself…it is doing it in a public place…with your children watching you.
Yesterday I decided, in my infinite wisdom, that it might be fun to take The Woo and Foghorn ten pin bowling as a treat. (I also secretly hoped that a nice physical activity would tire them both out a little enabling me to put on a movie, and get some writing done in the afternoon – but on this point I was disappointed.)
Apart from the loud thumping of bowling balls hitting the ground as The Woo, tongue poking out of the side of his mouth in deep concentration, enthusiastically launched his ball down the alley, we actually managed to remain fairly conspicuous on this particular outing, well, for the most part anyway.
The screen above our lane highlighting whose turn it was and how many pins they’d hit helped enormously in maintaining order. Amazingly, they were sufficiently engaged in the activity to ensure that there were no squabbles over turns, balls, drinks, or which Ben 10 alien was the best. I was silently feeling quite proud.
But it is amazing how quickly the time of emotions can turn on you, isn’t it?
Foghorn, waddling up to take his turn with his orange ball in his little arms readied himself to perform his signature move – which consists of placing the ball on the ground and then giving it a little shove so that it moves down the lane at a snail’s pace occasionally bumping against the bumper bar. It is painful to watch!
Amazingly, he managed to somehow defy nature and got a strike on one of his turns…what the? Unfortunately, he had grown bored of waiting for his slow-moving ball to make contact with something, and was busy staring absent-mindedly at passers-by and picking his nose when they all came crashing down.
Anyway, on this particular occasion at the very last moment, before giving it that little nudge down the lane, he suddenly picked the ball back up and instead, pushed it down the unoccupied lane next to ours.
What happened next can only be described as an act of pure stupidity on my part.
Before I knew it, I had leapt to my feet, and was heading towards the barely-moving ball. In hindsight, I really have no idea what compelled me to do this. I should have just let the damn thing run its course, and got another ball.
What I had failed to realise is that the actual lane is highly polished, and…well, these shoes do not really provide a great deal of traction on this surface.
After what felt like an eternity of frantic arm flapping and flailing as I tried to regain my balance, (which no doubt ensured that I had the attention of everyone in my vicinity), I lost my fight against gravity, and fell over with an unceremonious SMACK!
But wait, it gets worse.
Instead of cutting my losses and letting the ball continue on its merry way, I became even more determined to get it. I’d come this far, hadn’t I? Somehow, it was now paramount that I retrieve that ball. I’d look like a complete goose if I failed to return with the ball after the hideous scene I had made of myself.
Still on my hands and knees I lunged forward to grab the ball. Argh! It was just out of reach, rolling steadily away from me.
Do you know what I did next?
Did I get up on my feet, dust myself down and walk away empty handed in the interest of salvaging the last shreds of dignity that I had left?
Um…no! I actually wish it had occurred to me.
Instead, I crawled after the ball.
Picture it! My two small sons standing, mouths agape at the spectacle of their mother crawling down the bowling alley on her hands and knees in hot pursuit of an orange bowling ball!!!
Oh, the horror! Oh the shame!
Fortunately, as far as I know, there is no video or photographic evidence of this slightly embarrassing incident, although I did manage to interview a witness (who may or may not be speaking English – personally I think he was in shock) just moments after the event took place.
So tell me (please), that I am not the only embarrassing mum in the world? Have you unwittingly embarrassed yourself or your kids in a public place?