Tuesday, November 11, 2008

I Need Some Artsy Clothes

It’s refreshing to find a book that is frank about how one’s behavior as a mom can’t be too rebellious against the school system or the child will pay the price, but then goes ahead and explains how to get the “good” volunteer jobs and dodge the time-consuming, boring tasks. Silicon Valley Mom Blogs’s own Michelle Lamar has a new book (Congratulations, Michelle!) titled The White Trash Mom Handbook, and here is one of her entertaining solutions:

Present an image to the community that says “I’m artistic” so that you are crossed off the short lists for some of the more political type of jobs. . . . Artistic types do not get asked to chair important committees. People respect and enjoy artistic types – they just don’t want them running the budgets or speaking at meetings.

She goes on to describe vintage and “artsy” clothes that send the message, as well as what fun jobs might be available instead of PTA president.

Although the descriptions of the precarious politics of an elementary school parent terrify me, I enjoyed reading Michelle’s descriptions of ways to be helpful to teachers that will be appreciated but still fit my style and schedule.

This is the part I’m going to need to figure out. By nature, I actually like to be on the organizing end of things. I’ve run projects, committees, dance troupes and theatrical productions with crowds of people, complicated tasks and hard deadlines. Since Q-ster was born though, I’ve taken a big step back to protect my time for him. Work is pretty demanding, so the rest of my time needs to focus directly on family.

As the boys grow and these sorts of school opportunities come up, I’m curious to see what I’ll become in this new context - activities that aren’t solely about my family, but again for the larger community. Will I be a joiner, a driver, or an “artistic type?”

And on a totally unrelated note, here’s my Q-ster story of the day: The Best Use of an AT&T Catalog ever.

The little dude cut out phones for both of us and we spent the evening making 'calls' to each other. "It's Mace Windu on the phone!" sez he.


Mayberry said...

It's definitely a fine line--I tend to be the organizer too, as in when I see an organizational void I always want to step in and fill it. But it could easily become a full-time job!

Michelle Lamar said...

I am so glad you liked the book and I don't think I was able to put in enough info about the moms who are good at and like organizing, being in charge! It's awesome! Lots of stuff was edited in the final book and this chapter had more in it about tips/advice for moms who are natural leaders! It's all about being true to yourself, being the best mom you can be based on who you are and what natural talents you have. Some of my BFF's are on the school board and coach 3 soccer teams, really!
Re: being terrified of school based on my stories. If you were ever a girl scout, you know that it's all about being PREPARED. You might not need to have the raincoat but you pack it anyway. Hopefully you won't run into some of the evil muffia trolls at your school---but you can prepare yourself if the situation should occur.
Rock on and lead, sister! If that is what you love, show 'em how it's done. I support and salute you! LOL! Thanks for the review.

seo test said...

In many societies, people of high rank reserve special items of clothing or decoration for themselves as symbols of their social status.

2KoP said...

I need artsy clothes, too. I've done virtually every volunteer job, but I dress way too mama-ish to truly represent my writer/artist self. And when I put on lipstick, my son tells me to "wipe it off and stay home from a meeting for once." Can't win.