Part doctor, hairdresser, driver, cheerleader

Hot Flashes



“Yaya, this tastes weird.”

Shoot, I gave that cheesy bean burrito my best shot, apparently unappreciated by the 6-year-old. Picture a male version of Shirley Temple with dirty baseball cleats instead of tap shoes and you get the idea.

Well, it’s not the first time I’ve had to settle for a “weird” rating from Mr. Super Mario connoisseur, so I went to Plan B and laid out a peanut butter sandwich. Such talent. Hold your applause.

This one’s the youngest of the three stooges, also known as my grandsons, who are currently on the loose. Lock up your daughters, fellow Conejons, because their parents have escaped to a Mexican paradise.

So there are three frisky kids running around, one with pink eye, one who never stops talking, and one night owl who’d prefer Netflix to “The Cat in the Hat.”

Just shoot me now.

Oh and so’s you know, I’ve got full custody of one-third of the stooges, yet I’m recklessly multitasking as physician, chauffeur, cheerleader and pretty lousy hairdresser. Get out the axle grease because these cowlicks are holding their territory like Sitting Bull. Too bad I can’t get their bodies to be as attentive.

Here’s the math, if you give a rat’s patootie. We’re in the early days of Little League baseball for all three, playing on two entirely different fields—Fiore and Dover/ Hendrix—guided by six dazed-and-confused coaches, bolstered by an elusive bevy of beautiful team mothers thinking email and texts would simplify things.

And then there’s me. Yaya. Not so beautiful.

Who used to enjoy brewing her coffee in the morning, quietly, with the newspaper by her side, while two old labradoodles monitor the bird feeder. Who does her yoga before bed so she can walk in the morning. Who likes to have a cocktail with Grumps at 5 and solve all the problems of the world while occupying a corner of the couch with a nice pillow on her lower back so her sciatica doesn’t flare up . . . with two kinda stinky labradoodles waiting to harass Henry and Maya, two fellow four-legged nut cases next door.

Well, baby, for one week those days have vanished like my ability to remember what the Final Jeopardy question was.

Oh and guess what, to add insult to injury, it’s picture day. I won the lottery on this one.

It’s “shoes, hat, gloves, bat, pants, belt, cleats, bag and tuckin your-shirt” day. It’s “you have to stay out of the dirt” day; “here’s your order form and don’t lose it, you turkey” day; and “here’s your other uniform for the other picture and don’t lose it or you don’t get any Oreos” day.

And for me, it’s “why isn’t the snack shack open” day, because a Mountain Dew for my non-dewy complexion with a chaser of Doritos could be soothing. For two hours. Or three.

So I’ll just cut to the chase. If you don’t hear from me again, send the rescue squad. Or the National Guard. Big Huey and the Huguenots. Anyone.

If you smell what I’m cooking, if your hormones come in a bottle, if you wear soft, really baggy PJs, and if you can still sing along with “I Wanna Hold Your Hand,” then you’re part of my tribe.

And I ate the bean burrito. It was delicious.

Elizabeth Kirby has been a resident of Thousand Oaks since 1983, whose glass is usually half full if she can find it. Reach her at or To read all her columns, check out her Facebook page.