Monday, April 21, 2008

Chocolate arrives at the House of Crazy

Attentive readers will recall that I won a blogger give-away hosted by the lovely Trish. Who (bless her) promised to send me chocolate. Which she did, and not a minute too soon.

Here's the contents of the hefty box that landed on my steps this weekend:

We've got the most amazing Chocolate Bark. It's on the way up to my face in this picture.

As is this double chocolate cookie.

And we've also got homemade chocolate pudding mix, which Sophie has claimed as her own. This is fine as long as she agrees to spoon feed it to me while I'm sitting on the couch with my feet up and my eyes closed.

What's the problem? It's school auction time.

I coughed up an auction catalog last weekend, and this weekend I worked on bid sheets. Did I mention that I sent a couple hundred letters out to solicit much of this schwag and then logged it all into my kick-ass little database? I did. And so you would think that someone else could step in to help with these stupid bid sheets. But they haven't, and that's at least partly my fault. I haven't asked. But that's because getting people to volunteer at the auction itself has been like pulling teeth, and whereas I am capable of staying up to midnight cranking out these stupid sheets, I am not capable of prepping food, working check-in and check out, and doing cleanup at the auction without killing someone. Which I just might do anyway.

Especially if someone comes up to me at the auction to tell me "Oh, I see that we don't have X donation this year! Oh, that is just too bad. Why is that?" Or tell me if I ask them to give someone working a station a bathroom break "Oh, you know, I'm talking to my friends right now!" To which I want to answer "Oh, I didn't realize people like you had friends."

And if at this point you're wondering if I am perhaps not temperamentally suited for this role, I would concede that you're probably on to something. In our high school senior class book there was a section where people were voted "Most Likely To." I was not identified as most likely to become president of the P.T.A., but if there had been a "Least Likely" category here, I would have had a lock on it. I have crafted an entire professional career around avoiding meetings. I'm neither a leader nor a follower; I like to take care of details behind the scenes. I get shit done; I have little patience with people who dither, procrastinate, or fuss. I have a quick temper and often a big mouth. So WTF am I doing? It's important I remind myself of this several times a day: I am becoming part of a community that is built around the children of our school. I am making friends who support me and who I sometimes get to support in the most insane and questionably advised undertaking, being a parent. I am learning that with volunteers, you don't get to pick your team. You try to find what everyone has to give and accept it with equal amount of gratitude. I am showing my daughter that she and her school are a priority for me. At the end of most days, that's enough.

I said most, not all. Thanks, Trish, for sending a little something to get me through the next week (the auction is Saturday). And apologies to the rest for being a bad blog reader and commenter and a probably incoherent blogger myself.


MixinMike said...

Gosh Cindy, you are working too much for this auction, you need help. My sister says that volunteering at schools is the pits. She says women can get down-right nasty and act like it's some sort of an ego trip and really get competitive with each other as though it were a corporation. She said a lot of women take on so much work because they are control freaks and want to prove to others just how much work they are capable of doing.

You need a break, honey. With a family and work and your blog I just don't see where you find the time. When all is said and done, pamper yourself at a nice spa and forget about the world.

You go girl!

Jackie said...

Stay strong Cindy. You are a great Mom which is clearly evident by this post and many others.

I was like you with the wedding and never asked for much help but drove myself nuts in the process. Sometimes it's OK to let one task go to someone else. Ask and you will receive (help that is) :)

Jen Yu said...

I was lying in bed last night, reading this post with my laptop perched on my chest, not really physically capable of commenting yet. So while I'm reading, you make me laugh with your snarky observations (love the snarky) and the laptop shifts and nearly chokes me to death... ;) You're a toughie and even though you hate doing this stuff, I am guessing you'll do it again because people are generally flakes, but you can get the job done right. Life is like that - there are doers and losers. You're a doer. And don't share your chocolate with those f'ers. If this is prattling on and on, it's chemo brain...

Monica said...

You're preachin' to the choir, sista! You and I could be in the yearbook together; I'm not a slacker but I'm no ass kisser, either. It seems that the latter comes in handy when dealing with PTA shtuff.

But you're right-we're doing it for our kids in order to make their school a better place. When they're old and grown we'll be glad we did it (right???).

Trish said...

So glad you liked the chocolate goodies!! I would be happy to pass along recipes - esp. for the very addictive bark.

Hang in there with the Auction -- it's worth it in the end. (Our school's auction is in the fall, so by now all the labor and hard feelings and whatnot have been forgotten.)

Anonymous said...

Good luck with everything; I'm sure Saturday will be a great success!