Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Misunderstanding (Genesis - 1980)

Any similarities to actual events and persons in my family are not coincidental. This story took place between Wednesday, January 31, and Monday, February 2, 2009.

make-up \ˈmā-ˌkəp\ - something that makes up for a previous postponement, omission, failure, or deficiency. ~ Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary

Every Wednesday my three-year-old daughter went to gymnastics.

Well, most every Wednesday.

Because of my forgetfulness, and occasional bouts with lethargy, we missed a class or two, or three, or maybe . . . well, who's counting? Thankfully, I was able to schedule make-up classes.

The first time we missed class, I told Lucy we missed gymnastics but not to be sad because “I was able to schedule a make-up class for next Monday.”  To my surprise, she wasn't the least bit upset.  Hell, she even seemed excited about what she called her "new class.”

On the day of the make-up class, as I dressed Lucy in her black long-sleeved leotard, she asked,"Dad, why do I have to wear my leotard to the make-up class?"

"Because it's gymnastics. Gymnasts wear leotards,"  I said matter-of-factly.

For a moment Lucy looked confused, but didn't say another word.  Running late, per usual, I moved past her odd question and quizzical look.

Ten minutes later, as we pulled into the gymnastics parking lot, she said, "Is the make-up class here?"

"Of course, where else would it be Silly?" I said.

Lucy sat silently, suddenly looking unsure about the situation.

I hustled Lucy inside and quickly shed all but her leotard — and Dora The Explorer underwear stylishly visible underneath.  Racing through the gym door, I directed her to a smiling instructor seated in a small circle of Lucy sized humans.

My little girl hesitated before slowly making her way to the circle and finding a spot to sit.

For the next fifty-five minutes I watched with a handful of moms from the waiting area as the children stretched, straddled, somersaulted, jumped, ran, balanced, and lastly — what I'm told is the very "bestest" part — got ink stamps on their hands and feet.  Lucy gave her instructor a high-five and came bursting through the gym door.  Looking like she had something very important to tell me, she ran to where I sat.

"Daddy! There was no makeup in the class."

Puzzled by her comment I repeated,"No makeup?"

Shaking her head from side-to-side, Lucy said, "Yes, they had no makeup! It was not the makeup class."

I smiled, "Honey, that was not a makeup class it was . . ."

Interrupting, she said, "I know Dad, you put me in the wronged class!"

Oh okay, you mean the makeup class, as in a class about cosmetics, commonly confused by fathers with the make-up class, as in the save-your-ass class when he forgets to take his kid to the regularly scheduled class. Well, someone had some explaining to do — and that would be me.

The same word but with a different meaning conundrum. The peculiarity of language or the natural by-product of a forty-four-year-old man sharing his days with a three-year-old makeup crazed little girl?

I don't know who or what is to blame. But I do know, you can't make up this stuff.

makeup \ˈmā-ˌkəp\ - cosmetics used to color and beautify the face. ~ Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary