So a few months ago my company took us all down to the Happiest Place on Earth, AKA Disney World. As a side-note, I honestly have no idea how that place earned that title. It is my own personal version of Hell. Its beyond crowded, the food is mediocre at best, and there are replica Kate Gosselins everywhere with their 3 child stroller that ready to take you out if you beat them to the dippin dots line. No Thank you! Anyway, the main objective of the trip was for us to examine how all of their employees "exceed their guests' expectations." One prime example they used to describe this concept was by highlighting the 3 O'Clock parade question. In all of the parks, there is a parade that takes place every day at 3pm. Apparently, the #1 most common question that Disney World Park Employees get asked is "What time does the 3 O'Clock parade start?" Yes, I am dead serious. (I'm gonna take a gander and say that most of the people visiting Disney World with children have to be heavily medicated in order to have a desire to go, which is hopefully why they ask such ridiculous questions.) So, the Disney Employees pride themselves on figuring out what the guests are actually trying to ask aside from what time it starts, such as- Where is the best place to sit for the parade? Does it actually start on time, etc, instead of answering with a seemingly obvious answer, like "3pm, duh."
After I got back from that work trip, I started paying closer attention to the 3 O'Clock parade type questions I get on a weekly or daily basis. I have to share the top ones I get with yall because there are some doozies.
3 O'Clock parade Question #1: "So, you're an only child, aren't you?"
My Actual Thoughts before I answer: Umm, What are you trying to say here? Are you hinting that I act like a 2nd grader who won't share my toys? Or that I act like things have to be done my way for me to be happy? Several great friends of mine are only children & they are all fantastically generous/thoughtful so the fact that there is any kind of negative connotation attached with this term irritates me a bit. Especially given the fact that I do indeed have an older brother who is 3 years older than me, who spent his childhood terrorizing me. Insert broken nose, headless taxicab barbie doll, scars on my knees from racing to get the front seat, etc. Trust me, if I can make it through childhood alive with Kent, I can do anything & get along with anyone. Having a brother like Kent has definitely made my life more interesting to live. I always say 2 things when people ask me about him. 1) You would never ever know that we were related. When people meet us together, we inevitably get asked if we are half siblings. Our appearances are starkly contrasting. He towers over me, has jet black hair, is dark complected, and is skinny as a rail.
#2 Most Common Question: Are you & Kevin trying to have kids?
My response: "Ummm, no. We're just not really ready yet. I'll let you know if that changes?
What I'm really thinking: (After I hyperventilate for about 5 minutes...) Invasive much? That question gives me horrendous anxiety the minute I hear it. Can we just be married and enjoy each others company for like .5 seconds? We've only been married 14 months. I'm sorry I'm not like half the people I know from my hometown who became "with child" the very second they were married (or lets be honest, some before hand, but thats okay!). Not that there is anything wrong with that, its just not my style. I'm not a big fan of change, so you know the Public Service Ad that is supposed to scare the hell out of teenagers that says "A Baby Changes Everything"? That Ad has actually been wildly successful in completely freaking me out and terrifying me that my life is just gonna stop when Kevin and I do decide to procreate. I need a lot of time to get used to something before I even consider changing it. Right now, I am just really enjoying this time with my husband where we can go on a spur of the moment trip, or stay out until 3am without judgement. Plus, with how busy I am with work and getting my MBA, I have consistent nightmares that Kevin & I have had a child, but I have managed to lose it somewhere in Lexington. I think thats a pretty solid indication that I am not quite ready for a child. Besides, I'm only 25, not 45- I think I have some time. Side note: All of our neighborhood children like to linger around our house because we're the "cool, young" neighbors...
or so I thought. My next door neighbor, who is 8 (& good at it), had the audacity to inform me Thursday that she thought I was definitely starting to look like I could be a Mom to someone, and I actually am old enough to be her mom. ZING. Granted, I would have had to be on 16 & pregnant to be her mom, but it hurt none the less. No more extra cupcakes for you, little Shelby.
Parade Question #3: "You have HOW many animals? 3 cats & a dog? Good lord, why?"
My Response: Yeah... we do. It just kind of happened. We love them to pieces though.
Actual thoughts: Okay, really? I don't ask you about why you are 48 & have a nose ring, do I? Nor do I ask you to help me take care of them, so lets take it down a notch, judgmental Judy. I understand that having 4 pets is not the norm, but its not like we started out on a mission to acquire a bunch of furry friends to help us inhabit our house. As I have stated before, Kevin & I are both are HUGE pushovers for animals. Seriously, pet smart is a dangerous place for us to visit on a weekend. Again, those humane society people should really look into working for the government on their treaty/peace making efforts because they could talk people into doing ANYTHING. So, how did we end up with 4 animals? Kevin adopted Breyer to keep my company when I lived by myself in Southern Kentucky. In a dry county. Need I say more? Cat #2 came along because we were at PetSmart on a Saturday (uh oh. big mistake) & Kevin suddenly decided that Breyer HAD to have a friend. Insert Stella, who was the smallest kitten ever, who has grown up to be the ummmm, most unique looking cat we own (politically correct term for unfortunate looking). Eight months later, we were back at Pet Smart on a Saturday (Stupid, Caroline! Just plain stupid!) and the humane society volunteers was this sweet older couple who had actually fostered some of the cats there. There was this one chunky monkey of a cat there, who was about 4-5 months old, but she looked soooo much like a wildcat with her markings. The older couple said she had the most playful personality of any cat they had ever fostered, and they were worried that no one was going to adopt her because she was already out of being a "true kitten." I fell in love with this cat instantly, and begged Kev to let me have her. Any guesses on who that was? My little LUCYYYYY Girl!!! (Ps- best decision of my life.) We adopted Hudson because 1) I had never owned a dog and 2) when he was a puppy those crazy people at the humane society listed him as a german shepard/lab mix, which was exactly what we wanted. Much to Kevin's dismay, he just really never grew into that description. At our 2nd vet visit, the vet told us that she thought he was a MIN PIN/ Lab mix, and he would only be about 35 pounds. Kev was heartbroken, and literally asked (and still asks) Hudson every day, "So, youre gonna keep growing, right?" Um, he is now a year old & weighs 32 pounds. Not exactly the guard dog we wanted, but I look at is one of those "Life is like a box of chocolates" lessons...But come on- look at this face-
I definitely have more 3 O'Clock parade questions, but I went on way longer than I had intended. But seriously though- listen for these questions this week because I guarantee you'll hear them & start to form some fabulous responses in your head. As a warning, I probably wouldn't use any of my line of thinking while answering them. It might be come off as a wee bit provocative :) Okay, thats it for now. XOXO- Caroline