Thursday, September 22, 2011

Naughty, Naughty Erik

Both of my daughters have an impressive history of getting boys to do, well, pretty much anything the girls want them to.  We have an entire photo album filled with pictures of boys with moussed hairdos, boys with green goop on their faces and cucumber slices over their eyes, boys soaking their feet in peppermint foot soak. There are pictures of boys dressed in prom dresses, in cheerleading outfits, and my favorites of all -- the boys with the colorfully painted fingernails.
You have to be pretty persuasive to get a macho guy to let you paint his fingernails pink! 

Once my oldest daughter, now retired to wedded bliss and motherhood, actually shaved the chest of one hairy, hairy senior in high school.  God love him, he was working pouring asphalt that summer - a hot and miserable job.  At work, he would sweat profusely but after that fateful evening's shaving, he refused to remove his t-shirt because he knew the other guys on his crew would never let him live down his hairless chest.  (Later he admitted that when the hair grew back, it itched like crazy.)

Tonight my youngest daughter, a Chelsea Handler* in-training as well as a waitress at an upscale eatery, convinced one of her coworkers (who will now and henceforth be referred to as "naughty, naughty Erik") that it would be funny to pull a little prank on her mother.  (Me.)  I know that naughty, naughty Erik is not to blame for this hoax.  No, he was just the latest victim, lured into Katie's web of deceit.  Katie should be a lawyer.  She is very persuasive.  I have my own laundry list of things she's convinced me to do against my will, so what chance does one of her peers have to resist her?

(*Chelsea Handler is a comedian that is known for her elaborate practical jokes.)

Waitressing and I go way back - back to the time when we were waiters and waitresses, not just the generic "servers" of today.  I loved the thrill of a crazy busy shift and understand the boredom of a quiet one.  Serving is a demanding job, but if you perform it well, people leave money on the table for you.  How cool is that?

Tonight, just as we were finishing dinner, the phone rang.

"Hello, is Katie there?"  the very professional sounding man said.

"No, you've reached her mother.  I am in South Carolina.  She doesn't live here."

"Well, this is the contact number on her application form.  I am calling from her work trying to reach her because she didn't come in this evening."  he said.

"She worked the morning shift," I replied.

"She was supposed to work both, but she didn't show up." he countered, smooth as silk.

"I will have her call you right away," I said, already hearing imaginary ambulance sirens and feeling my blood pressure soaring to new heights.

"Thank you," said he and he hung up.

Now, only kids will think that calling somebody's mother and scaring the heck out of her is funny.  All mothers know that I went into panic mode and saw hundreds of scary scenarios unfold on the movie screen of my mind.  Mentally, I was already packing my bags and buying airline tickets, on my way to rescue my baby. 

Not for one second did it occur to me that this might have been a prank phone call, so trustworthy and believable did this guy sound. He missed his calling, too. He should have been an actor.

I called Kate.  She didn't pick up.  I called again.  And again.  And again.  I had the feeling that she was avoiding me, which relieved me somewhat and caused my fear to morph into irritation.  I texted her that she had to CALL NOW.  I called again.  I got a text from her but I was already calling again.

Finally she picked up and said, "Gotcha!  I'm actually at work.  That's what happens when we get bored.  It was my friend Erik who called you."  I didn't believe her, so she sent me a picture of them to prove it.

As my blood pressure was falling back into the normal range, I thought next time there's a lull in the action, maybe she could just paint Erik's fingernails pink.

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