As soon as I put them on the counter, I realized how strange they looked. No doubt the checker at the Sports Authority was wondering why I needed to purchase a workout outfit in Women’s medium, along with airsoft gun bullets and a black face mask with anti-fog lenses.
“I realize it looks as though I’m buying this outfit to go with the airsoft gear,” I pointed out, my voice trailing off. I was going to explain that the airsoft stuff was for my son’s birthday party at my house, where five seventh graders would be shooting the plastic pellets at each other all afternoon, but that seemed equally silly. Instead, I just mumbled to myself, looking forward to when my purchases would be placed in a nice concealing bag.
I should have told her the truth: I am the Patron Saint of Stupid Jobs. Well, I can’t claim that, exactly. My friend, who shall remain nameless but she knows who she is, calls herself that very title because of all the seemingly endless dumb little tasks she has to take care of as the primary caregiver of her home.
“I have to make sure the ballet shoes are ready to go and get the Girl Scout cookies delivered and make sure the soccer cleats make it to soccer,” she told me one day, where else, but at soccer practice, where she was handing out Girl Scout cookies to various parents, including me.
“All those years of college, and what am I?” she complained. “The Patron Saint of Stupid Jobs.”
Ah, but what parent, especially Mom, isn’t? We are in charge of the minutiae that comes with parenting, whether we’re making sure we’ve packed enough diapers and secured the baby’s “lovey” in the stroller, or we’re washing the soccer uniforms at midnight. Or whether we’re making sure the airsoft party has enough bullets and a spare face mask, in case someone forgets to bring one. Stupid jobs, all of them, but somebody’s gotta do it.
“You know, some of that stuff, the kids can do,” I suggested to the Patron Saint of Stupid Jobs. Her oldest is the same age as my youngest, so she hasn’t yet had the revelation that gee, kids can do lots more things for themselves.
Just then, her son gave her a pleading look from the soccer field.
“He wants me to get his water,” she explained. “He left it in the car.” She started to head outside, but I stopped her.
“If you don’t go get his water, chances are, he’ll remember to bring it in himself next practice,” I said. She looked at him, and then at me — and stayed right where she was. The Patron Saint of Stupid Jobs was giving up her at least one of her, well, stupid jobs.
“I feel better already,” she said, before delivering the remaining Girl Scout cookies.
Share, share: What stupid jobs do you do? What do you wish someone else would do?