I'm Lindsay Ferrier, a Nashville writer with a passion for family travel, exploring Tennessee, and raising kids without losing my mind in the process. This is where I share my discoveries, along with occasional deep thoughts, pop culture tangents and a sprinkling of snark. Want to get in touch? Use the CONTACT form at the top of the page.
October 14, 2011
I arrived at Bruiser’s preschool yesterday afternoon to find a group of parents milling excitedly around a table in the lobby.
School pictures had arrived!
Warily, I went to the table and gave them Bruiser’s name. He’s a photo saboteur from way back, and when they showed me his first photo, I smiled grimly. The kid had lived up to his reputation.
I like to imagine that in this photo, he is lifting his pants to bleakly show the world the horrible shoes his mom makes him wear (and on that topic, why yes. I DID forget it was picture day.) In truth, though, the shoes at least are 100 % Bruiser. He insists on wearing them mismatched like that. He calls it “Bruiser style.” That combed-forward hair, though? Not my doing. Whoever thought it would be a good idea to comb all his hair in his face like that was SMOKING CRACK.
The second photo, however, was better.
I have no idea how they got the kid to smile and frankly I don’t want to know, because it leads to thoughts of strangers feeding him gigantic ice cream cones or Dunkin’ Donuts afterward. It wasn’t lost on me, though, that they removed his shoes for this one. Clearly, they don’t know Bruiser style when they see it.
Seeing my face, the sales associate must have realized that it was time to move in for the kill. (I imagine that the birds flying around my head and the fact that my eyes had become two rotating spirals had something to do with it.)
“We have three packages,” she said confidently, holding up an order form. “This one includes the blah, blah, blah…” Honestly, I have no idea what she said — All I could focus on was the price.
“Or you can choose this package,” she said, moving down to the second tier, “which includes the blah blah blah…”
“And then there’s this package that contains the blah blah blahity blah.”
Those were my choices, y’all. FOR PRESCHOOL PICTURES.
I paused for a long moment and gave her my most patient smile. “Okay,” I said sweetly. “So if I want to own MY SON’S PRESCHOOL PICTURES, I can pay $159.99, $129.99, or $89.99?”
“Uh huh,” the woman said, smiling back.
“I’ll pass,” I said lightly.
“We also have packages of the sheets by themselves,” the woman said quickly. “You can get all three sheets of photos for $69.99, or two sheets for $49.99.”
A sheet, by the way, was one 5×7 and four wallets.
What the everlovin’ FUDGE?!
I thought of the hundreds of amazing photos I’ve taken of my son over the last four years. I didn’t save for a year to buy a kickass camera lens for nothing.
“Um, no,” I said. “No thanks.” I turned and began to walk away.
“Oryoucangetonesheetfor$29.99!” the woman said desperately to my back.
Slowly, I turned. One sheet for $29.99 was still highway robbery. And why did it take me walking away to squeeze that price out of her? ANNOYING.
I sighed wearily. “Okay,” I said. “One sheet for $29.99 then. I’ll take this one.” I chose the close-up.
As she rang up my sheet, she said with an undeniable tinge of snottiness in her voice, “It is a school fundraiser, you know. Some of the proceeds go to the school.”
Oh girl. Don’t get me started. I love my son’s preschool, but I swear it holds fundraisers every five minutes. This, of course, is in addition to the pricey tuition we pay each month.
I could have said something really choice to the woman at that point, but I held my tongue. Because I AM TRYING TO BE A BIGGER PERSON. Figuratively, I mean. Not literally.
As she took my debit card to the register, I looked over at the mother standing beside me. “Can you believe these prices?” I was going to whisper, but just as I opened my mouth, she held out the order form to the sales associate before her.
“I’m having some trouble deciding between this one,” she said, pointing at the $159.99 “and this one.” Her finger moved down to the $129.99.