Monday, August 7, 2017

The Teenage Boys at the Park

This past Tuesday, my mom and I took the girls and J to the lake for a day of sun, sand, and swimming. It was lovely. The weather was perfect, the lake was not very crowded, since it was, you know, a Tuesday.

We swam for several hours, the kids played in the sand, we ate lunch out of coolers and then swam some more. There was also frolicking on the narwhal floaty. I’m pretty sure we had the coolest floatation device in the lake that day.

After we’d eaten again (swimming makes you hungry, don’t you know?) Alyssa asked if we could go to one of the local parks. We hadn’t been to that park yet this summer and so, why not?

This park has a pavilion in which there are quite a few picnic tables. The bathrooms are also part of the pavilion building. There is a play area with swings, a slide, a fireman’s pole, you know, all the fun stuff available at most fun parks.

When we got there, we noticed that there were probably about six or seven teenage boys hanging out on the picnic tables under the pavilion. I almost said they were loitering but that seemed unfair. I mean, it’s summertime. What are local kids supposed to do if they don’t have jobs? They go to the park. So what if they’re all around fifteen or sixteen years old?

Anyway, the kids were playing on the slides for about ten minutes when the teenage boys decided to join us.

Yeah. That was awkward. They climbed up the slide, up the outside of the playground equipment and basically looked like a bunch of chimpanzees taking over and staking their claim.

Alyssa, Olivia, Jaxon and I headed for another area of the park where a lone slide hangs out in the sun. They kids played on that a bit, Alyssa made her way to some bouncy things shaped like a motorcycle, a horse, a car and something else. She rocked back and forth. Olivia tried to climb up the lone slide (no one else was trying to go down. I always tell my kids if there are other kids trying to go down a slide, don’t ever try to go up it.) Jaxon found some dirt to play in.

When the teenage boys realized their antics were impressing exactly no one, they went back to the picnic tables.

We headed back to the shaded play area and Olivia found her way to the tall spiral slide. Jaxon went down the fireman’s pole twenty-two times. He counted.

And…the chimps came back. Well, sort of. They made their way to the giant turtle sculpture that has been at that park for over forty years. It’s one of the original pieces of the park. And once there, they egged each other on. I think they were trying to get Alyssa’s attention but she was so over their stupidity. At least two of the guys took of their shirts. She was NOT impressed.

We finally started walking toward the car, still ignoring the mating call of the pathetic teenage boy.

My mom is sure she heard one of them call, “But we didn’t get a number!”

I didn’t hear that and neither did Alyssa. But even if we had, we’d have ignored it because, please. As if!

For one, even if she doesn’t look it, she’s fourteen. For two, every single dude there was still waiting for his ‘glow up.’ They were just this side of hoodlums. I’m giving them the benefit of the doubt and not calling them actual hoodlums because, well, they were never actually harassing anyone but that first time they descended upon the playground was verging on feeling like harassment so…yeah, just this side of hoodlums.

Good thing they don’t live near me or I’d be yelling at them to get off my lawn and shaking a fly swatter at them.

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