Lights! Cameras! Gawking!

By Mir
November 11, 2004

How do you know when you have a keeper of a babysitter? Take this simple test to find out!

You should keep your babysitter if:
A) The kids love her
B) She’s reliable
C) She lives across the street
D) She’s bright enough to call you “just to let you know” that a house a few doors down is on fire, there are multiple fire trucks and ambulances on the scene, and please do not freak out, they are all fine in your house, which by the way is not on fire, and also the kids are sleeping through the whole thing
E) All of the above

If you answered E, you’re correct! You are also me! (So stop it, because that could get confusing.)

Usually on Thursday nights I head off to choir, come home, walk the sitter back across the street, and then relax in front of the TV. Tonight, I had to spend an additional ten minutes just getting to my house, because my street had turned into a veritable carnival. The sitter and I then walked past not one, not two, but THREE fire trucks en route to her house, which is–wait for it–only two doors down. We also passed everyone who lives within a five mile radius, I think.

Once I had her safely delivered to her door (“Are your parents home?” I asked. “They’re probably standing out on the street watching the trucks,” she laughed) I hustled back towards my house, as usual. But the people. My god. There wasn’t a raging inferno or anything; maybe there had been, earlier, but by then there really wasn’t anything to see other than a lot of rescue vehicles with flashing lights. And I cannot imagine that the rescue workers were finding all these milling, chatting people at all helpful. Yet there everyone stayed, like they were all on line for free food or something. I didn’t recognize most of my neighbors, on account of I’m a bit of a hermit, and there were enough people there that most of them probably weren’t actually neighbors. Likewise, most of them didn’t recognize me, so I shouldn’t have been surprised when they eyed me suspiciously. It could have been that I was walking away from the hubbub, which clearly hadn’t occurred to any of them as a viable course of action.

Or it could have been that I yelled out, “Dude! Where’s the keg at?” as I pushed my way through the throng. Either way.

1 Comment

  1. Kate

    Nothing like a nice disaster to bring neighbors closer together.

    Unless it involves dawgs. Here’s my Good Luck/Bad Luck babysitter story.

    The best babysitter we ever had: the very first night she took care of our kids, the oldest got bitten by a dog. (not the babysitter’s fault)

    The sitter called us up to say that we shouldn’t panic because she was trained as EMT, and she had stopped the bleeding, but she did think we needed to take him to the hospital. Soon, please. Yes, get in your car, mom and dad. Come home. Now. All said in a cheery, upbeat voice.

    I shudder to think if we’d had a standard babysitter! The sight of the blood would have put any normal person (like me) over the edge.

    Oh, here’s the punchline: the dogs live next door. They STILL live there and a couple of weeks ago, the next door neighbor asked my boy — the one that had spent hours in the hospital and had gotten stitches because of the damn dogs [oooo I still want to kill ’em] if he would take care of the dogs over the weekend.

    I did NOT call her up to tell her she was a bloody idiot, but I did tell him that if he took the job, he could drive himself to the hospital. Since he’s a few years from getting a license he declined the job. That and he’s terrified of the dogs. We all are. They’re eating the stockade fence between our yards, trying to get at us.

    Hey, what a lot I seem to have to say in YOUR blog, huh?

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