Who Needs Actual Writing When You've Got Very Small Shoes?
Preshus Parenting Moment #7852

The Starbucks at the End of the Universe

So let's say you have plans to meet someone at a nearby Starbucks at 3:45 on an average Thursday afternoon. Let's say this person is actually another blogger who, by all accounts, is quite fabulous. Let's also say that you are pretty much a total shut-in these days and the whole endeavor is pretty much the social event of your week.   

(We don't even need to say how pathetically sad you are, because honestly, YOU ARE PATHETICALLY SAD.)

2:00 pm Hey, you know what? I should totally leave now. I'd be all early and relaxed and delicately sipping a non-fat latte that I totally won't spill on the baby when she arrives instead of flying in all hare-brained, disheveled and late like I usually do.

2:03 I could take my impossibly tiny new laptop with me and write a blog entry! Or maybe even a  book!

2:04 Oh my God, TOTALLY. I could get at least one, maybe two whole chapters written! I will sit in the plushy chairs by the fireplace and maybe get part of the proposal done too.

2:06 Also should find an agent. Can you find agents on Google?

2:10 Should probably give Noah a bottle first. 

2:20 Please don't spit up on me please don't spit up on

2:21 Dammit.

2:23 Okay! New shirt! Pretty pink boho shirt! Matches fabulous pink Prada sandals!

2:25 Dilemma: Pants too long for pink Prada sandals. Pants make ass look not huge.

2:26 Kicky espadrille wedges it is!

2:28 Did I shower today? I did shower today. Or am I thinking of yesterday?

2:29 *sniff*

2:30 Well, I definitely forgot deodorant this morning, THAT MUCH IS CERTAIN.

2:33 Hair up? Hair down? Hair Up?

2:37 Up. Definitely up. Makeup would be nice too.

2:53 Let's change baby's diaper.

2:54 Poop! Of course. OF COURSE.



3:10 Who the FUCK took all the diapers out of the diaper bag? WHO? Oh right. The pooping.

3:13 Shove diapers burp cloths, bibs, extra outfit, plastic keys ($1.69 replacement keys for exact same 99-cent keys the dog ate, like fucking inflation, man) and plastic measuring cup in bag.

3:15 Walk past mirror. Hair down. Down!

3:16 If I leave right this instant, I will have 15 minutes to spare. I could at least get most of a blog entry done, plus maybe the acknowledgments for a book.

3:17 Hmmm. Sky looks vaguely ominous.

3:18 Will pack that stroller raincover thing we've never used just in case.

3:20 Should I bring umbrella? Logistics of pushing stroller and negotiating umbrella seem daunting. Will grab Coach rainhat instead.


3:24 Stroller is in car. Hmmm. What to do with baby while I unload the stroller from the trunk? Access to carseat is blocked by boxes of baby clothes I totally meant to mail to my sister like, three months ago and also office desk lamps.

3:25 After moments of deliberation, decide to stick Noah in drivers seat and buckle the seatbelt around his waist, and holy fuck I am very glad the whole "Internet Rockstar" thing is total petty bullshit, because the paparazzi would be all over my ass for this.

3:29 Stroller is bulky and heavy and arrrgh, it's starting to drizzle. Seriously, if I'm such a fucking rockstar WHERE IS MY PERSONAL ASSISTANT BITCHES?


3:32 Pry Noah's jaws off steering wheel, put Noah in stroller, realize you can totally see down my shirt when I bend over.

3:33 Shit. It's totally pouring now.

3:34 Stroller cover! Am world's best mother and trip-to-Starbucks-planner.

3:36 How the hell?

3:38 What the fuck?


3:40 Huh. That's pretty damn cool. Except...can he...breathe in there?  It's like I've just put a plastic grocery bag over his head.

3:41 Put on hat, jacket, start walking confidently down Wisconsin Ave. like the rain isn't bothering me at ALL and I can totally powerwalk 10 blocks in four minutes, are you kidding me?

3:42 Ugh, my hands are already pruny.

3:44 Oh my God. It's the fucking apocalypse.

3:45 A woman, in her mad desire to get around me (I gave up powerwalking about two minutes ago), nails me in the head with her umbrella. Sidewalk rage!


3:46 Stroller cover is impenetrable shield, deflecting all raindrops directly onto me.

3:47 Pink shirt, when wet, has taken on the unfortunate shape of a maternity top.

3:48 Noah and his Impenetrable Shield are very amusing to people, apparently.

3:49 Glance down, realize bra is showing.

3:49.17 Oh God, am one bottle-fed infant away from being Katie Holmes.

3:50 Sun! The sun! Yet it rains on.

3:51 Pants are so wet that my laptop would probably electrocute me.

3:52 SUN. No more rain. At all! In fact...


3:54 Decide to stop and take off jacket and hat, perhaps is time to check that Noah is like, alive and stuff.

3:55 He's asleep, all flopped-over-ragdoll-Sean-Preston-like. Decide to poke him, just in case.

3:55.12 He moved! Well. That's a plus.

3:56 Walk past Metro stop where forty plillion high school students are congregating. Dread fear of roving groups of teenagers second only to volcanoes.

3:57 Catch reflection in store window. Put hat back on. Wow.


3:59 At next walk signal, feel slight tap on arm, turn to see teenage girl. I am going to die now. Girl asks where Metro stop is. I point. She smiles sweetly and says thank you. God, they are so good at pretending to be normal sometimes.

4:01 Am muttering to Noah about disowning him if he ever dares enter puberty while I struggle with door to Starbucks.

4:02 Say hi to Stacy as I fly in, all harebrained, disheveled and surprise! Late.

4:02.30 Leave Noah in the care of total stranger from the Internet whom I just met 30 seconds ago and order a big fucking chocolate frappaccino with whipped cream.

5:00 Leave to go home. Do not dare attempt to write at Starbucks, as it was fucking crawling with teenagers who would probably beat me to death with my laptop, or at least make fun of my stupid hat.


It was a pretty stupid hat.



"Dread fear of roving groups of teenagers second only to volcanoes."
Change volcanoes to clowns, and I'm right there with ya, sister


Heh. At least you had a cute date to bring along with you!


Yes!! Why do we fear teenagers so much?? I mean, what is that?? I don't understand it! Even when I overhear them saying stupid shit about what time their parents are coming to pick them up, there is still SO MUCH FEAR IN MY HEART, that THEY will not think that I am cool! I think I need to get over this constant need for acceptance...


That was awesome.


Hilarious, and, as always--so true! This reminds me of the times I have to take my daughter to daycare on those rainy days in New York City (like today) where the logistics of getting there are almost unbearable.


Hey, at least you made it! Better late than never I say.....


Hilarious! And Sympathetic.

For me it is teenagers and other large and loud groups. And it totally makes sense because the news tells us how violent teenagers have become, no?


My almost-4-year-old son is obsessed with volcanoes! Instead of asking "why" he says "What would happen if you put x in a volcano?" Substitue x for hair, a car, a tomato, etc. What's up with that?


ITA that large groups of teenagers are extremely scary! I teach in a high school and dread class changes because who knows what the masses will do when the bell rings!

And could you be any more funny!!! Seriously I had to keep myself from laughing out loud in front of my class :)


How CAN they breathe in those stroller bags? Didn't it fog up really bad? And did you tap on the plastic and tell him to quit breathing already like I do to the dog when he's fogging up the car windows? I am so funny that way.

Also, the Ugly Doll? I want one badly. BADLY. I am horribly terribly jealous of Noah.


Rain ruins everything.


Cute picture of absolutely the cutest baby in the world, and a wonderful post we can all relate to. We can also relate to the part about teenagers; are they afraid they'll catch something if they acknowledge that we older folks exist?

Where did you get your "impossibly tiny new laptop"? What brand and model is it?


Oh totally on the teenagers. They play ball on our street and do the whole "car coming but we're not moving because we're surly teenagers" thing. I'm particularly fearful after last year's neighborhood picnic when I snapped at some of them for eating all of the brownies when their parents didn't bring anything to the fucking potluck and I was 9 months pregnant and really wanted some fucking brownies. Sorry.

But it sounds like from your story that Noah either behaved or slept (still behaving, I guess) at your meet-up...that's a bonus!


I TOTALLY had this same day this past Tuesday. (minus, of course, the baby, cute shoes, even cuter blond hair and well..being in the downtown of a major metropolitan area)

...but I had to run through the pouring rain with my two girlfriends from work to get to the cute little Arabica coffee house for lunch.

And was so wet and cranky and horrid-looking by the time I arrived that I promptly went over to the counter and ordered...

a large hot chocolate with extra whipped cream.

Made it all better, even if just for the next 10 minutes.

Great Post!!



ALL the kids on our street do the same thing that HollowSquirrel mentioned, including the ones that aren't even in school yet. I hate those herds of kids. What I hate even more is that some day, if we have kids, they'll want to go play with them.

Actually, I felt that way about groups of teenagers even when I was one. Am old person trapped in 29-year old's body!



Please don't be afraid of teenagers. Some of us are nice! Like me! I'm not surly, nor do I travel in a pack because it is a) inconvenient and b) I don't know that many people my age.




I am afraid of teenagers as well. Roving groups of them, anyway. Brilliantly funny! I'm so glad I checked your blog before work rather than after.


You made me laugh out loud on a day I was writing off as one of the worst days ever. Thanks!


Love this! I would love to be a fly on the wall in your house - oh the laughs that would come from that!!!!!


Terrible horrible flashbacks of pushing stroller covered by useless plastic rain shield while holding umbrella over self - twelve UPHILL blocks to daycare - while trying to remain somewhat presentable as must go to work after drop-off and appear reasonably professional.

Oh, and the day care? Three steps up to the door. No ramp. No room to open the door once I have hauled the stroller up to the top step. Must stand on the top step, holding door open myself, reaching down as if I'm in a yoga pose, and grab stroller still sitting on sidewalk with 30lb child aboard. Even more fun in ice and snow. Woo hoo!


you are brilliant - I love those entries!! I was in DC last weekend and totally: fuck those damn high school kids. And the elementary school kids, they're even worse.


sooooo funny. oh, and sorry about all the rain. and teenagers. yay for the starbucks!


I want to see the hat. I demand to see the hat. I know you have all kinds of photo taking machines and things that download it onto the site so you have NO EXCUSE. Show me the hat NOW. I took your quiz, I totally refresh 80 times a day I deserve to see the hat.

hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hattie hat hat


What IS it with the gang of teenagers that makes me want to run and hide?



You are just one of the funniest people on this universe. I swear. I'm sitting at my computer at work hoping noone asks me what the fuck I'm laughing at because I'm not supposed to BE on the internet.

Hope you dried out okay.


I work with teenagers and love them (yes, most people look at me like I am strange). The secret: Don't fear them, they can smell fear.

Of course, I have an irrational fear of rollercoasters and when people tell me not to fear them, I look at them like they have a crack habit.


Nice Ugly Doll.

Is he, um, lying ON his crib bumper?

Laura B.

Hilarious! I am having a truly shittastic day, and tears of laughter were exactly what I needed. Thank you!


You have brought some much-needed smiles to my hellish bedrest.


Ox! I love Ox!

Heather B.

(1) You got a new laptop?? Wheee!!!

(2) I really want to see this hat

(3) You know that there's a starbucks considerably less than 10 blocks from you, correct?

(4) I once got stuck in the rain while at work and looked like I entered a wet t-shirt contest. I'm still traumatized by that incident.


Laughing. So. Fucking. Hard.

God that was great. Sorry for your day but glad for this post!



Do not fear the teenager - they are the only suppliers of affordable child care. I spent 3 years finding an appropriate teenager and then she went to college -
Teenagers are selfish like that.


Teenagers aren't so bad...I have two of them. Of course, I don't have a pack of them.

That was hilarious! That weather really was very weird yesterday. My dogs barely had time to freak out and then the sun came out and, you are right, it got very hot.


you know who you wanna meet at starbucks? me. because i would so be late too and my shirt would have stains on it even though i totally tried for it to not have stains becausxe i am a mother of two and i cannot ever have anything on that is not stained and i would have died trying to walk in the rain and then sun with trying to get there on time. we could have written our novels TOGETHER. how cool would that be? like, so cool.


I was once part of a roving band of teenagers that would run up to old people and scare them on purpose. I think this is why my six year old son has a mohawk and sneers at me and my four year old daughter rolls her eyes and calls me mother. I have no hope what so ever of being cool. I totally screwed my self and karma is coming back to bite me in the ass.


Of course it's poop; it's always poop!


social event of *your week*?!?! BEEYATCH!!!


oh, come on. now you're not even showing us said accessories anymore? what has happened? you KNOW the internet is nosy and hyper and wants to see the goddamned hat.




So true!! My own teenagers got tired of me wearing the Jackie-O sunglasses for so many years, but I believe it may have saved our relationships.


I was reading... and drinking diet coke... and now I have a computer covered in diet coke. Because that post was damn hilarious!

And the teenagers, oh my god the teenagers, around here totally scare me. I agree with you, don't make eye contact. It will save your life because THEY ARE OUT TO GET US AND THEY GET MORE POWERFUL WITH EACH TEENAGER THAT JOINS THEIR GROUP AND OH MY GOD! SAVE YOURSELF! Ahem, yeah, with you on the teenagers thing.


holy shit -- i wish i had thought about strapping my babe into the drivers seat while struggling to get the stroller out. instead i sat his ass right on the pavement. i got many many disgusted stares from people who obviously raised their children in a dirt-free bubble.

i love your timeline entries.


Wow! That was like a whole lifetime in 2 or 3 hours! I'm out of breath just reading about it.


Dude, those teenager crowds are dangerous. A crowd of them waiting at a bus stop once THREW A ROCK AT ME. Beacause I refused to answer their calls of "hey girl! Girl in the shorts!" They missed. But still! If you ever venture to baltimore, your fears of teenaged mobs are well justified and WATCH OUT. Seriously.


You never fail to make me laugh out loud to the point that I'm trying not to snort in front of my coworkers.

Um, thanks, I think. ;-)

Jerri Ann

What a riot! I think you've been following me around....but I have two kids, one and three....yikes..I love more than just unorganized and dis-sheveled...I look crazy eyed and wierd!


Crap, I didn't know that I should fear the teenagers. I mostly just ignore them and hope they go away.

Oh...fun times.


God, I am SLOW today--your title just now struck me. I take it you are a Douglas Adams fan? The Hitchhiker's Guide books are possibly the funniest I've ever read. GREAT stuff. Definitely snort-worthy.

reluctant housewife

Yikes! It's 2:00 and I'm meeting friend for coffee at 3:30. There is rain. I guess I'd better get ready.

(please write that book. please write that book.)

Miss S

Actually, I thought the hat was great! But what the hell do I know, I showed up to meet a total stranger with glitter on my arms and a dangerously little amount of makeup. The TEENAGERS were scary! Does this mean I'm old?


"He's asleep, all flopped-over-ragdoll-Sean-Preston-like."

Fucking priceless.

Magistra Omnium Domina Nihili

So last summer this museum downtown was having an exhibit on dinosaurs and their relationship to birds. We thought, "What an excellent thing to take the 2 1/2-year-old to!" The exhibit had timed entrance and the museum was not free, so I ordered up the tickets for a Sunday morning. As we're driving to the university campus next to the museum, the adorable boy pukes. All over his clothes. And we don't have any change of clothes with us, having gotten past the explosive poop stage. Not enough time to go home, the tickets cost us a bit, the boy is anxious to get going (he feels fine now, don't you know), we plop him in his stroller in his sandals and diaper and walk on over, arriving a couple minutes early, though looking like the trashiest trash imaginable. First stop--the gift shop for a largish T-shirt.

And then? He only wanted to run through the exhibit. By our figures, we spent $1 per minute of our time there.


I'm curious as to whether the impossibly small laptop is a VAIO. I almost got that one (really light), but it was just a little too small.


*clears throat*

hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat hat



Great, now I want to go to Starbucks!


I am learning so very much from you...Future references galore!

Thank you!!

I would also like to see the hat! And the pink Prada shoes (thank you for NOT wearing them in the rain!)!!


I love the suggestions about a book that I don't remember ever coming up before!? I know you know we want to know! She wants us to ask, internet! So, I'll be the spokesperson for the internet... "ARE YOU/HAVE YOU WRITTEN A BOOK TOO!?" BTW, you make me laugh and I just think you are awesome! I'm a "fan" and I feel like such a total dork saying that because I have never really ever been a "fan" of anyone (but my family, of course). The internet is a better place because of you! And I like you better than Dooce. And I'm not just trying to be a brown noser or anything either. Sorry Dooce...


So frickin' hilarious!

This is my favorite:
3:46 Stroller cover is impenetrable shield, deflecting all raindrops directly onto me.

I have that same stroller cover.


I have to tell you that I think you wrote a future experience of mine as a parent, because I am so going to be exactly like that. It's a little scary, but funny reading about it when it happens to someone who is not me.


I'm terrified of teenagers too and I have two of them! I actually like mine but big groups of them are intimidating to me. That's why I never chaperone anything.

Y from the internet

You were showing your bra on purpose JUST ADMIT IT!!


OMG! You crack me up! Thanks for giving me something to smile about during my boring day at work.


but you didn't fall and that's a plus. coulda been much work. i realized recently that i have become a little freaked out by teenagers and a rash of "yes ma'ms" lately hasn't helped. when did this happen? i feel two steps away from "off my lawn you damn kids". sigh.

now i want starbucks.


"...and if you walk to the end of the block, there sits a Starbucks. And directly across the street -- in the exact same building as that Starbucks -- there is... another Starbucks. There is a Starbucks across the street from a Starbucks! And ladies and gentlemen, THAT is the end of the universe." - Lewis Black


Okay! Okay!

A picture of the damn hat is at Flickr. Prepare to be massively underwhelmed.


Oh my- you would totally hate my job... I am senior vulcanologist at Dante's Peak High School. Would you ever want to guest lecture here someday?

That would be awesome.


Hilarious (as usual) and the kid gets cuter with every photo!


Thank you. Now: shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes shoes


15 minutes late is totally in the realm of mommy time in my circle of friends - not too bad! Also I REALLY need to know what the creature is in Noah's crib with him, please. Cheers!


omg, i just read a newspaper column the other day that will make parents like us everywhere stop whining about poopy diapers: it was about this couple in their mid-80s who had been changing diapers every day for *FORTY-TWO YEARS* for their severely retarded daugther! then this year they had to institutionalize because they physically were so old and frail they couldn't lift her and stuff anymore or apparently afford in-home help; plus this place she's in will help her transition to how life will be once they die, and they can still visit her daily. ANYWAY, crazy. and makes me want to not get pregnant again.


Oh, Amy. No one makes me laugh like you do.

By the way, once your comments pass 50 do you continue reading them? Just curious. :-)

Her Bad Mother

Laughing so fucking hard that my stomach hurts.

But also, trembling a little. Roving packs of teenagers. The horror.

DO NOT LOOK THEM IN THE EYE. Thank god you read your How To Survive A Teenage Cluster Mock handbook for mothers and suburbanites.


Let's be honest. Your favorite part of this post is that you got to say "groupies and blow". Unlike your day job.

I have bloooog envy...


Ah, this entry reminds me of the ones you'd write when packing for ambiguous business trips. And I'm still loving it.

(Also, am married woman now. Wheeee!)


Eeeeeeeeee! Noah has an OX! I bought one for my nefew! Am cool now!


Teenagers. Yes. These little basta... lovely children in my neighborhood crawled up on the roof and ripped the siding off my house a few nights ago. Hmmm.

I am delurking to say that you are extremely funny and have pulled me out of a funk more than once with your humor. THANKS!


I am sincerely SO HAPPY that someone else leaves stuff like boxes and office lamps in the car for weeks at a time. Really! So glad I'm not the only one!


Dear Amy,

Rain ALWAYS brings out the best in us. Damn pink shirts. Should have a warning about risks involving water.

Love Aly.


Starbuck: Surprise! Yes, I do. Every damn one.


ROFL aren't the "gadgets" the hardest part about a baby? The first time i tried to go to Target with mine, I couldn't unfold the stroller and I forgot the screen, so it was newborn daughter in one arm. TP and prescription in the other.

I bet the Coach hat was cute, though =)

D. Hesselman

Hi, I am an old lady of 52 and I think your blog was desperately funny! But, Sweetie, the language kind of matched the weather you were having, huh?....

D. Hesselman

Hi, I am an old lady of 52 and I think your blog was desperately funny! But, Sweetie, the language kind of matched the weather you were having, huh?....


Since you are being so obliging with the Coach hat photo requests, any chance of a photo essay featuring all of your Coachly beauties - after all, this is Coach we are talking about, and this collection sounds impressive....


Ditto, dk!

And may we also see shoes, please.


This was hilarious. I am impressed with Noah's impenatrable shield, though it's unfortunate that they haven't yet invented a way to simultaneously push a stroller and hold an umbrella. WTF?

Mama Kelly

OH Goodness do I remember days like that ... not the going to Starbucks part but the wrestling babies and diaper bags and strollers and what not and trying to stay sane in the process

I would never have been able to put it so eloquently or so hysterically funny as you have ...

blog on


:-D I thought so. I used to read them all but sometimes there are just too many. Have a great weekend.

Suzy Q

OMG, the TEENAGERS! They are fucking terrifying! But, it just gets worse as you get older, hon. I am 46 (gah), and now you 20-somethings scare me, too. Don't try to pretend you don't congregate in great youthful groups, holding your Starbucks cups and chatting about things I will never understand, like bluetooth (WTF?); you do. And, don't get me started on the clowns...or the rollercoasters. Imma gonna crawl back under my rock now. Safe there. Can I have some wine?




Hey my baby has an OX doll too! So cute.


I'm just glad to hear that getting out of the house is the same for at least *someone* else as it is for me.



Love your blog Amalah! Curious as to what impossibly small laptop you have. Would you recommend it?


You just totally described a usual day here. Except for the part about Starbucks and being afraid of large crowds of teenagers.


THAT is exactly why I never left the house with my children until they were eight years old.

kerri anne

You weren't late, you were just entrance-making. ;)


Hysterical! I can't stop laughing. It brings me back to when I used to take my 2 year old twins and infant son in the back carrier, 2 step-children and foster daughter out to the store. Oh, the looks I would get!

But I love teenagers. Sometimes I see them at a bagel store or pizza shop and I treat them to whatever they ordered. They like that.

Erin O'Brien

Next time, use the extra hour and a half to conduct an elaborate masturbation session, complete with personal lubricant and prosthetic penis (vibrating or not--you're choice).

That way, you'll be on time, look fabulous (no matter what you're wearing), and you'll be brilliant.

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