Sunday, July 3, 2011


Dancer gets a break on Sundays at her dance intensive. After several false starts I found someone who knew someone who could take her to church (thanks, Rhonda -- it worked well!) This afternoon the whole camp is going to a Detroit Tigers game. Mom-Fail admission: Dancer has never seen a baseball game.Not even on TV.

I have no excuse for my 12yo child's complete ignorance of professional sports, other than to say that we get no TV reception, and have never bothered to get cable. Tickets to live games are not in our budget. In days of yore Andrew edited the Baseball Encyclopedia, but now he's content to listen to games on the radio. So this will be a true cultural excursion for Dancer.

Next week's trip will be a novelty as well: they're going to a mall. She's never been to one. I guess it's a side benefit of city life; we don't have malls.

To distract you from gaping too long on these gaps in my child's education, I will steer your attention to the differences between living in the 'burbs and in a major city:

  • We don't own a car.
  • Our church has more single people than families. 
  • There's no pool or lake nearby to swim in.
  • If we're only going a mile, we walk.
  • We always wear purses across the chest, and never hang them on the back of a seat.
  • No child expects to have his or her own room.
  • Our grocery stores don't issue coupons (and don't accept computer-generated ones)
  • We have a trash chute instead of a laundry chute.
  • Kids' sports teams (and fields) are hard to find.
  • We only buy as many groceries as we can wheel home in our granny cart.
  • We have no attic or cellar in which to store things.
And  yes, it's true: my kids have never been in a Walmart. They can cross city streets and travel on the subway, but I'm sure they'd get killed crossing a parking lot. Because we don't really have those here, either.


  1. Love your list!

    Within the last six months, I said something about a mall, and Offspring asked for a definition. Woot!!!!

    He hasn't seen a baseball game either, though we're thinking of taking him to see something in the minor leagues some day. He does have a baseball glove that he got as a hand-me-down, but it hasn't got much use.

  2. I remember my first trip to NYC in 1995. I had always dreamed of seeing the city so my husband took me for our anniversary. I also remember the nice waitress who advised me not to hang my purse on the back of the chair like I do at home! Since then we have made many trips, some with our two boys. We all have a soft spot for NYC and have met some of the nicest people there.

  3. Correction: next week we're going to the Detroit Institute of the Arts. The week after that is the mall.

  4. As somebody who grew up in the Detroit suburbs and has never been to New York, I am envious of the lifestyle you have. However, the Detroit Institute of Arts is wonderful and your daughter should love it. A Tigers game is a must, too (only when they are playing well, though). For me, I would love to see the Statue of Liberty, museums, a Broadway play and (as a genealogist) the Ellis Island Museum. I'll be interested to see just what Mall they select to visit. There are some beauties in the Detroit area though I would love strolling through Macy's in New York! What a wonderful experience for a 12 year old.

  5. All familiar, of course! We've had that mall conversation, too. And we've been to a Mets game exactly once. Musical and drmatic performances outnumber sporting events and movies, but we try to educate CZ in regular American culture when we visit relatives.

    In fact, at the relatives', I often feel sort of like I'm raising Patty Duke's identical cousin Cathy, except that CZ isn't as elegant as Cathy, but is usually mismatched instead.

  6. Julia,

    I'm so glad things worked out well for Dancer. Helping out was my great pleasure.

    Having lived in NYC for a summer, your list was nostalgic for me. I thought it was weird, but eventually got used to, putting laundry in the shute. I also loved being able to walk so many places and not have to deal with malls. Going directly to the store I wanted was a real treat for me.