|One of these boys is about to get banned|
from the park district.
I'd like to think it's because he's bored, because he knows how to go under water and has advanced swimming skills already and so he finds pouring a cup of water on his head while singing "This is the way we wash our hair, wash our hair, wash our hair" completely asinine. But I've always thought the "my kid is so smart he's bored" excuse to be pretty weak. Sure, he's smart. But is he POLITE? Can he follow direction? No. Alex is not polite. He refuses to give his swim instructor a high five because he says he doesn't like her. And he certainly doesn't follow direction, staring critically at his teacher, unmoving, while the rest of the kids just pour the water on their heads like they're supposed to it. I mean, just do it. Just f-ing do it.
There's more to Alex's class than cups of water. There's kickboards, fetching swim rings, kicking while holding on to the side of the pool, etc. Alex is interested in practically none of it. He gets out of the pool on his own, wanders off to do his own thing, and is an altogether embarrassment. If not for obedient, eager Andy on the other side of the pool, I'd feel that Alex were bringing shame to the Berger name. We are a family of GOOD LISTENERS, dammit. Of achievers! I took AP Calculus in high school for Pete's sake! Of course, I failed it. Calculus is hard, yo! Pretty sure Chris passed it, though, so the genes are definitely there.
Alex's swim class has three swim instructors for about eight or nine kids. Alex, because he is so disobedient, essentially has one teacher assigned just to wrangling him. To following him out of the pool when he decides he's too cold or that his swim trunks need to be readjusted or when he's ready to go find his brother. "Andy! Andy! Here I am, Andy!"
Today, he seemed a little better. I watched him shuffle reluctantly through the pool to find one of the swim rings, and when the teacher announced that today they were going to jump off the diving board, Alex's ears perked up, and he climbed out of the pool, ready and willing to dive to certain doom. He ran to the diving board, feet pounding over the NO RUNNING words transcribed on the pavement. He got in and out of line at the diving board (calling out "Hi Andy!" over and over again to Andy who was already at the deep end.) And then he got on the diving board, almost slipped right off, starting jumping in the middle of it, and eventually bumbled into a great big splash into the lifeguard's arms. Or at least near them.
Success. Kind of.
Alex was proud of himself for jumping off the diving board. Andy was proud of Alex, which was even more important. Emily was fast asleep in her stroller, blissfully unaware. And I was wedged into tiny little short shorts that were baggy on me last summer, remarking to my friend that they were tight in all the wrong places and that I was finding it hard to focus.
After swim lessons, we hit the splash pad where Alex stole some kid's ball. With a week or so of swim lessons left, I hope that Alex hits his stride and starts listening to his teachers a little better. And that he doesn't injure himself goofing off on the diving board. If not, maybe I'll cop out and say that his bad behavior is because he's sooo bored. Or I'll just admit that my second born son is a little shit that doesn't respect authority and can't follow simple direction. Although I won't actually call him a shit, as that would also be in poor taste.