It wasn’t supposed to hurt my feelings, mainly because I didn’t understand what she was talking about … but it sure wasn’t a compliment.
Allow me to set the stage
The Diva and I were sitting in the car waiting for cheerleading practice to end. And no, she’s not a cheerleader but her best-friend-of-the-moment is. They were going to church together with a mystery friend – meaning a young lady’s whose name I couldn’t remember.
I was in Meet the Other Mother mode, a duty normally reserved for My Lovely Wife who is way better at first impressions and knows to ask all the pertinent questions: “How are they getting home?” “What time does (enter event here) end?” and “Would you be offended by a random background check and drug screening?”
I generally have the mental faculties of a ransom drop – I dump and run just being thankful to get away without being recognized. But raising a teenager to become a living, functioning, socially responsible adult sometimes requires surviving awkward situations, namely meeting other parents and appearing interested in what they have to say.
But this was screwy from the moment the plan was hatched, which is to say last minute, like everything The Diva and her cohorts do.
I was inappropriately dressed, wearing a T-shirt from the 1963 horror movie Blood Feast (produced by Alabama’s own David Friedman) that depicted a mad doctor playing with the bloody body of young, most certainly dead, damsel. In bold letter above the grisly milieu was the slogan, “Nothing so appalling in the annals of horror.”
Yep, that’ll make mom feel safe the next time we schedule a sleepover.
Upon alerting The Diva to my concerns about getting out of the car she answered, “Why … ‘cause of your shorts?”
I was aghast, confused.
There was nothing obviously wrong with my shorts. They weren’t skin tight Sun Britches or Jams. They were plain ‘ol Wal-Mart Starter basketball shorts. Nothing could be more age-appropriate.
“Uh … what do you mean, my shorts?” I said worried about what would come next.
“Well, you’ve got a girl’s butt,” she said without a hint of sarcasm. “It’s a bubble butt.”
For the record – I’m a 38-year-old guy who started losing his hair around freshman year in college. I used to be skinny and have become a tad plump, but I’m still skinner than most of dad’s I know. I’m not the best looking dude on the block but I’m no Creature from the Black Lagoon either.
Hey, in high school they called me “Sexy Legs” … OK, so one cheerleader called me “Sexy Legs,” but I had a T-shirt to prove her assessment. My butt was something I’d never given much thought to when it came to my overall appearance.
I tried to let it go, but suddenly I felt self-conscious.
My Lovely Wife assures me that I have nothing to worry about. “It means you don’t have a flat butt like most guys … it’s a good thing. Besides, I love you no matter what.”
Again, less than complimentary. Plus, I’ve never been good at taking complements, especially when they might be veiled insults. ‘Course given the bulbousness of my butt, I figured the mother I was about to meet wouldn’t pay notice my T-shirt. Good thing I know how to back that thang up.
Contact Brett Buckner at firstname.lastname@example.org
Brett Buckner is an award-winning freelance newspaper/magazine writer who was raised in Albany.