‎"...a little 'trouty', but quite good" ~ Eve Kendall, North By Northwest

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Buster the Wonder Car

I have no stories.

I am fresh out. I look inside and there is nothing.

A couple mornings a week, I take a turn driving Sugarplum, Studley and Giselle (Sugarplum's friend) to school. As soon as the seatbelts click they start yelling "Ms. Trout, tell us a story!" And usually I do.

They all start the same: "Once upon a time there were two little girls named Giselle and Sugarplum, a little boy named Studley and a driver named Ms. Trout. They were on their way to school in their little car." And then the car shrinks to the size of a chipmunk or turns into a rocket ship or helps the fairies rescue their queen from pirates. It is an industrious car.

But lately, I can't make that darn car do anything. It is a great disappointment. If things don't change soon, I may have an identity crisis. You see, I don't drive a fancy car. I don't drive a clean car. I don't drive a car with dvd players and seat warmers and art supplies. I drive a car with pieces of lunch on the floor.

What I do have is the ability to transform that car into anything I want. I love making the kids shriek and giggle and gasp. They love that the driver always forgets the adventures as soon as they get to school because grown-ups don't understand magic. Often they take a fairy kiss or a butterfly's benediction with them to school. Souvenirs.

And yet, I am road weary. It just seems that we've done all there is to do.

I'm also afraid that if I don't get back up to speed soon they will lose interest and wander off. They will look forward to the days when other parents drive. They will read Seventeen and Tiger Beat and the Huffington Post. I will have lost them. I will have lost my chance to make the world just that much more impossibly real. The clock is ticking.

So tomorrow I'll start another story, and hope that it takes on its own life the way they used to. Maybe tomorrow there will be flowers growing out of fallen seeds in the back seat of the car. Maybe we will notice a village of tiny people living in the blossoms. Maybe I'll tell you more about my sailing class and how I can't concentrate on all those fancy sailing terms because the view is so spectacular.

Maybe tomorrow the stories will come back.


Janine said...

Time for a new car. Or stories using some other form of transportation. How about flying backpacks?

PS wonderful post.

kayare said...

I love your stories-even the stories about what will be your next story. Maybe the end of the school year has you in need of a summer of adventures to prepare for next years ride to school stories from Ms.Trout. After all, there is a lot of sailing and day dreaming ahead.


Kristin @ Going Country said...

Two things.

1) I love that the kids call you Ms. My mom is Southern, my dad was in the military, and it was so deeply ingrained in me that adults are ALWAYS Mr. or Ms. that I still to this day call my friends' parents Mr. or Ms. Even though they always yell at me about it and try to make me use their first names because I'm an adult too.

2) I did not know Tiger Beat still existed. I thought it died a quiet death in the 90s, when there were no more Coreys to feature.

Celia said...

My Mom used to tell us stories at breakfast about her adventures while we were at school. The Queen would come to tea or King Kong would swing by. It was awesome.

TwoBusy said...

Time to start cribbing storylines from popular culture. Maybe start with some Stephen King... "Salem's Lot" or "The Stand" could make for the basis of some fun rides to school.

Dana's Brain said...

My Mom was always a good one for stories as well. I totally admit to being not good at stories! Which is a suck, but I deal. Maybe you can post a few old stories and I can tell my kids those. I'll give you the credit!

"Here's another story from Ms. Trout, who has a way better imagination then your Mom!"

The Whispering Poppies said...

The dishroom. I worked there in college, and I think a certain male friend of yours did as well. As did his roommate (ew). ANYHOW... dishroom tales make great stories. I used them on my own children. Transform that car of yours into an industrial sized dishwasher, and tell tales of the people who have eaten off the plates it washes (feel free to borrow this story... I've used it and it works)!

The Whispering Poppies said...

PS - my dear BIL worked in the dishroom, too. Need I say more.

Zip n Tizzy said...

Are you sure you're not my mom arriving in her time machine? She used to tell us stories, and take us in time machines and rocket ships, but she used props. I think you need props. Kazzos and leis and tiaras are all a good effect when you're running short of ideas!

Susan said...

Janine - I just saw "Buster the Wonder Car" in your sidebar and thought "oh look, someone else has a car named Buster!"

Hello, I am a rocket scientist.

kayare - Yes! I have lost my fizz and need a recharge. Stories are fueled on vitamin D and ice cream.

Kristin - Tiger Beat is gone? Why did no one tell me this?

Celia - If I tell stories like that, people will think I'm hallucinating. It's a fine line. A fine line I think I'm willing to cross.

TwoBusy - Think of the gas I'd save when the other moms demanded to drive!

Dana - The stories are too dorky to repeat. I have a ridiculously easy audience.

Poppy - I think you're on to something. And must you speak of the roommate? Ew.

Zip n Tizzy - First, I really love your profile picture and the other pix of your kids with things on their heads & torsos. Hilarious. Second, I rarely clean out my car, so props should be no problem whatsoever.