Wednesday, August 05, 2009

Observations at Swim Lessons

Angry Toddler has been taking swimming lessons since the start of the summer. We are doing the lessons through the City's Parks & Recs program.

After the first day of lessons, Angry Husband called to warn me. He took the kid the first day. He said that there are lots of bitchy mothers who are complaining that they do not like the instructors and want their kids switched. I just rolled my eyes, while listening to him on the phone.

The second day, I sat down and began with my people watching. I'm new to this youth sports thing. I like to watch the parents as much as the children. When I observe the kids, I like to see how Angry Toddler is interacting with them. Are they acting like him? Is he doing well developmentally? YES, these are the things that go through my head.

And then there's the parents. They are very cliquey. The normal "sports cliques" really don't apply here. They actually break themselves into "race cliques" here. The "crackers" my white folk, were left sitting alone. We had no cliques, just ourselves. I actually watched my kid, mostly, since I wasn't busy gossiping in foreign tongues.

The outfits on the kids crack me up. Even Angry Husband shakes his head at these. Angry Toddler's swim lessons are usually in the early evening, think 5 o'clock. This is in Orange County at a high school pool. I can't tell you how many kids that I've seen in full wetsuits (long sleeves), rash guards, normal clothes, and bathing suits that look like they are 5 sizes to small. These poor kids, I just don't get it. A wetsuit to take lessons in a 3 ft deep pool? I guess Angry Toddler is boring, wearing just swim trunks and some goggles from the grocery store.

We've done 4 sessions of lessons so far. Angry Toddler has "decided" that he would like to play water polo in the future (random for a 4 yr old). I told him that he needs to learn how to swim really good. Hence, why we are at swim lessons, almost every day of the week.

The last session of swim lessons was my favorite by far for the people watching. While they have the group swim lessons for older kids (3 and up), they also have the parent and child for the smaller kiddos. There was this dad, just walking around in his Speedo and t-shirt. He was fit, but not ripped. He always got there early. Dude, I really don't want to see your junk that close. He kept chasing his toddler around. I wanted to say, please put some damn pants on.

Then my most favorite story. There was this woman that walked in with an infant in a stroller system thing. I guess she had an older kid in lessons. All of the sudden this young girl walks up to her. The mom says something and walks away. I then see her go running. These swim lessons are 25 minutes, not hours long. The girl looked lost with all the other "parents" sitting there. I finally figured out that she was the nanny.

The next day, I saw the mom again, with the dad. They had the baby with them, and the nanny. The nanny was sitting on a folding chair, and the dad pretty much kicked her out of it. She ended up sitting on the floor. The dad kept asking her weird questions, like was she wearing a new shirt, what book was she reading, etc. It totally creeped me out. I would never want to nanny for a family like that. I was texting the entire situation to Angry Husband while I was there. His response was "ewwwwww".

Angry Toddler started another new session this week of swim lessons. They are broken up into two week increments. I hope I can get some good stories from this session. Angry Toddler is doing quite well. I guess he's working on his goal of being a water polo player. He does amaze me though. He knows all of the kid's names in his class and all of the instructor's names. He's 4, how does he do that?

I don't know if I could ever be a soccer or baseball mom. It's probably that I don't fit in. I like to sit on the sidelines and stare at everyone. I'm such the people watcher. I CAN NOT help it. At least I keep entertained with the people watching, and maybe even Tweet while there.

P.S. I'm including this picture of Angry Husband and Angry Toddler. Don't they look angry? Angry Husband hates his picture being taken. I will know if he's stalking/reading the blog because he will say something like, "umm, why did you put that crappy picture of me on your blog post."


  1. I love mom watching too! It's one of my favorite things to do besides actually watching my kids. And yeah, Ewww!

  2. I love to people watch too. I hear you on the weird swim gear at the pool, I notice the same thing while we are at swimming lessons.

  3. WOW! Where I'm from all the kids just wear swim suits...some with swim shirts and goggles, but nothing as fancy as a wet suit... we reserve those for lakes and water skiing around here! I sure wish I had been smart enough to start my kids' swim lessons at the BEGINNING of summer, rather than the end, because my 6 year old - who was FORMERLY deathly afraid to even put her face in the water has blossomed into a fish - owell... indoor pool = lessons during school in the evenings!

  4. I hear you on all of this! I always feel the odd parent out at baseball and soccer, keep my head down, watch the play and occasionally tweet! Hmmm, it's kind of like high school, only with electronic gadgets. Oh, and a kid.

  5. haha...I'm a people watcher too.

    I'm not a very good one though because sometimes I forget that I'm not wearing 'make me invisible' glasses & I get caught watching, lol. Then I'm just that creepy girl staring at everyone. Awkward…

  6. Ditto! I am the people watcher and I know EVERYTHING that is going on. I would totally sit with you and we could text back and forth about all the oddness going on so no one could hear us talking smack.

  7. I'm the same way, I love to people watch.

    and the swim community around here is INSANE. The competition between the parents is unreal, I can't imagine what it's like to be a kid in their houses!

  8. I'm nosey too.....err I mean I am a watcher/observer too (everywhere I go).

  9. I actually love that picture. It's what drew me to read the post when I saw it in my reader, so tell AH it's just fine! ;)

  10. Ha ha ha! :) Too funny. Well I know that people watching the OC will never let you down. Nice work on the nanny spotting. I was a nanny in the <3 of OC and everyone always just gave me the, wow you whore you're too young and must be up to crazy explicit behavior to have a son that age. ha ha ha

  11. I think as "bloggers" we are all people watchers. I'm glad that I'm not the only one. I love a good train wreck!

  12. The grand kids love to swim, one of their favorite things is to come and visit and end up piling onto grandpa and nearly drowning me!

    Wetsuits in the swimming pool, well I never.

  13. yay for him and water polo!!! i was an all-american! plus if he sticks with it, about 99% of the parents will be white, haha


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