Monday, January 18, 2010
People Are People
This is what people see when they approach the back of our vehicle. My brother-in-law sells these stickers and put them on there for us. I'll admit that I used to be a part of the group who thought they were... I don't know, braggy? Ultra-mormon? But now I LOVE them. Mostly because they make for some interesting parking lot conversations and encounters on the road.
Almost every person who sees these stickers proclaiming that 2 parents have 9 children wants to see the person who is driving. They'll speed up, look at me (or Allen) and then slow back down or zip on by. I've become accustomed to this and will often wave or even offer a friendly salute - only because I know it makes them feel a bit awkward that I'm on to them... and I'm all about getting people out of their comfort zones. In the summer I even like to have the kids roll down their windows and we bust some amazing synchronized dance moves or head bangin' as other vehicles pass, gawking.
A few times, I have been surprised. Once a man matched my speed on the freeway (pet peeve) until I looked over at his vehicle so that he could hold up 9 fingers followed by a finger pointing at me and a questioning look. I offered a thumbs-up with a quick head-nod before he sped off, smiling and shaking his head.
On our recent trip home from California an equally large vehicle, also filled to capacity with a whole passel of kids, pulled alongside us. The driver gave Allen a generous smile and a double-thumbs-up and then sped off.
Just about every time I walk out of a StuffMart or grocery store there is someone standing behind my vehicle, counting stickers. When they realize it is my car, the counters will either ask where I got the stickers or if I really have 9 kids. Not because they honestly care to know, but because they feel as if they have to say something.
Once I even caught a girl taking a picture of the back window with her phone. I pretended to walk past, then stopped and said, "That's a LOT of people on that window!"
"Yeah," she said, "I'm totally going to post this on my blog. Can you believe it?! How do they fit all those kids in there?"
"Well," I told her, "we have a custom seat for 3 in the cargo area and we don't often travel all together so it actually works out really well."
Her eyes widened just slightly before she said, "I was just kidding about putting the picture on my blog."
"It's okay," I told her. "I was planning to do the same thing myself."
And look... I did.