Dear THAT DAD at School Drop-Off:
Notice I didn't say "Good morning." I could tell it was an especially hard one for you, so didn't want to contribute to your elevating blood pressure.
I hope by now you made it to work in time for your important meeting—the one that was most definitely more important than mine.
I'd like to share a little insight into the school drop-off process, which I think you'll find helpful.
Mornings suck for all of us.
The alarms go off way too early. There are lunches to be made and missing shoes to find and—uh oh—the dog peed on the carpet again! It's the same scene in nearly every home in America that inhabits school-aged children. Yours is no exception. So, try taking a deep breath. You got this!
Treat yourself with a run through Starbucks afterward, but only if you manage not to lose your shit.
If you've dropped off more than once, you've likely noticed that the later you arrive, the longer the line is. Since you're a man of importance and ideas on how things should operate, I bet you can calculate that if you aim to leave even five minutes earlier than last time, you'll notice a big difference.
Follow the protocol.
You're not going to rewrite the rules, no matter how stupid you think they are. You might balk at the single-lane rule—But, there's room for two!—until you pull around and smack dab into Mr. Granger, who's on his way in to help your kid with his algebra homework. (Don't feel bad; none of us can help with the math homework anymore.) These rules are in place for a reason, likely based on previous accidents, complaints to the school and observations by those who occasionally patrol school drop-off, like Miss Vicki. Have you SEEN Miss Vicki? Trust me: NOBODY Fs with Miss Vicki.
If you're not sure exactly what the rules are—since you don't do this every day—it's OK! We don't expect you to be perfect. Simply sit back, observe what everyone else is doing and wave to the hot mom in the Range Rover. Ahhh! See? Easy peasy!
Be a good role model.
I don't need to go into full detail on this, right? I mean, you know that the biggest predictor in how your kids treat others as adults is how you treat them. Monkey see, monkey do—and you want the best future for your little monkeys, I know you do!
Your reputation is on the line.
This is a small community. We moms text. Often. Be especially careful if you drive something less obscure, like a Mini Cooper, for example, and flip my friend off because you don't know the rules. The jokes related to your car size and the size of your, um, 401(k) are exchanged with such rapid fire and wit even Donald Trump might blush.
So, I hope I have the privilege to make your acquaintance in the herd again sometime. I've had lots of experience with jerky drop-off dads over the years and have even witnessed transformations!
Don't be THAT DAD. I believe in you.
The Anonymous Mom with the Tinted Windows