I am knee-deep in presents today. I’m laying them all out nice and neatly under our Festivus pole for the big exchange on Friday. So today my practically-Aunt Ellen (she’s actually besfrinn Cameron’s aunt but who’s splitting hairs?) is here to entertain you with a little holiday PSA. Enjoy and I’ll see you Friday! -Emily
Once again it is the festive time of the year. There will be conviviality. There will be good cheer. For the health and well-being not only of yourselves, the parents, but for the safety of your young ones—Please Do Not Drink and Drive. The consequences of doing so could be severe and everlasting.
I myself have followed this wise maxim for years. It is only recently, however, that I have discovered an excellent unintended consequence of a strict adherence to this regime. My children are older now, and they often have to be ferried to and from various events at later and later times of day—or I suppose I should say night. And guess what? I don’t have to do said ferrying because I don’t drink and drive.
Herewith I offer for your delectation some real life examples. Quaff your preferred alcoholic beverage as you peruse.
Time: sometime after 6 pm
Son: Mom, may I spend the night with Andrew?
Mom: Sure! His mom will have to pick you up, though. I’ve had a glass of wine, and Daddy isn’t home yet.
This exchange exemplifies with laser-like precision how this premise operates in the field.
Time: sometime after 6 pm
Daughter: Mommy, will you take me and Zoe (sic) to the store for ice cream?
Mommy: Nope. I just got through having a glass of wine with dinner. Maybe tomorrow.
Daughter: Rats! Okaay…
This episode earns double points as children were saved from their unhealthy snack urges!
Time: Approximately 6 pm
Mom: Son, what time will the wrestling match end?
Son: I dunno. Around 8.45 or 9 pm, I am guessing.
Mom: Well, you’ll need to find your own ride home unless you want to wait for Daddy to get out of his meeting. I’ll be putting your sister to bed, and I know I will be having a glass of wine then.
Score triple points for this encounter. Maternal bedtime duties remain sacrosanct while affording an adolescent the opportunity to take responsibility for his own life!
Free at last! Free at last! After all those long years of mommy taxi duties, I am free at last!
I promise this approach can work for you too. It will not be effective, however, to suddenly develop this good driving habit when your child reaches the cynical age of 9 or 10. No. It must be drilled into him from a very early age that Mommy (Sorry, dads. You’re on your own) does not drink and drive. This way your calm statement that you cannot drive them to or fro will be accepted as calmly as it was stated. For so many reasons, I urge you now not to drink and drive.
About Ellen: Ellen is a total bookworm and bibliophile completing her first semester of library school in the great state of North Carolina. If you live in or near NC, please check out the North Carolina Literary Map which has all kinds of links and info all about the literary life of the state. For those of you wondering whether you can trust the advice she offers in this blog post, it is based on 21 years and counting in the trenches!