Shrieking Parental Units

August 31st, 2008 by Harrumpher Leave a reply »

Seneca Falls is damned low-key. On Lower Lake Road beside the still and even boat-less Cayuga Lake on a Wednesday morning well before 11, I was very surprised to hear panicked yelling.

This was a warning to all parents, disguised as protection for specific children.

A family of four — a pair of teens representing each gender and a matching parental set — slowly biked south on the otherwise empty road with a 25MPH limit. The kids were perhaps 50 yard ahead of mom and dad.

Suddenly, the maternal unit transformed into Crazy Lady. She stood on her pedals and pumped like she was in a spin class. Simultaneously, she shrieked at highest volume, “Stop! Stop! Stop!”

The children slowed but did not look surprised. I suspect they are used to this volatile behavior. Then, in the few seconds it took to close the gap, mom continued to scream, perhaps so all on the little beach or on the park side of the road could marvel in her concern.

She announced at high volume and with great authority that this was winery country (five to 15 miles south and almost certainly well beyond the family’s creeping range), that the roads were full of drunks (the roads were full of no one, the likelihood of an inebriated taster at 10:30 a.m. was tiny indeed), and that they had to be careful (as though watching a drunken driver suddenly serve across the road to crush them was something they could control by attention).

I had to wonder whether my boys ever see me like that — a neurotic and irrational parent acting out at their expense. May all parents guide their children, but never, ever in ways that make their kids and the rest of the listening world think they are crazy ladies and crazy guys.

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