Thursday, April 17, 2008

Wabi Snobby vs. Wabi Foxworthy. (They Have a Fight. Foxworthy Wins.)

Due to the hilly topography around here, our house has a lower and upper backyard. Nine months out of twelve we use the hell out of the lower yard, which sits directly behind the house and includes a covered patio and grassy area. By comparison the upper yard is all wasted potential with a side of weeds. Although it’s pretty big by urban standards and fairly flat, we have yet to figure out what to do up there. You have to go out the side gate of the lower yard to reach the path that leads to the upper section, which is awkward. The upper yard is also hidden behind a large hedge, which is good for privacy from the neighbors, but bad in the sense that the hedge blocks view of the upper yard from the lower one. Since the girls are too young to play unsupervised in an area I can’t easily monitor, we hardly ever set foot in the upper yard.

In Target this weekend I suddenly hit upon an idea on how to use that upper yard. Standing in seasonal sporting goods the pools caught my eye. Hmmm, I thought. What if we stamp out that weed problem by taking out the sod and installing a pool?

As soon as I considered it, I found two sides of myself arguing passionately right there in the store.

Snobby Wabi said, “You have got to be kidding me. NOT an above ground pool. It’s so tacky.”

To which Foxworthy Wabi said, “Oh hell, YES. Suit up and get wet!”

Snobby pointed out that nobody else in the neighborhood has an above-ground pool. What would people say?

Foxworthy said she’d be having too much fun splashing in the pool to hear what people say.

Snobby fretted that the neighbors with the bare trellis fence on that side of the house would not be pleased to see the screaming-blue visage of our pool looming next to them.

Foxworthy said those folks should have grown some freaking vines on their trellis at any point in the last 30 years before complaining about lack of privacy now. Plus a pool might motivate them to go in with us on a better fence next year. “Two birds with one stone!” Foxworthy trilled.

Snobby said she wanted a classy pool. An in-ground pool. One with a stone deck and maybe an attached spa.

Foxworthy pointed out that short of winning the lottery, the classy pool was not going to happen while the kids were still kids. Especially since we never, ever play the lottery.

I drove home from Target and asked DH what he thought. He doesn’t have as much redneck in him as I do, so I figured he’d turn pale at the very thought of an above-ground pool and say it was out of the question. Instead he said, “Hey, we wouldn’t have to mow up there anymore! And you’d get to swim with the kids and cool off on the really hot days when the house turns into a kiln. Let’s do it.”

So we checked into the zoning and permit requirements and found out we were good on all fronts. Next thing I knew we were whipping out the credit card and ordering a pool online. It’s on a truck rumbling across country toward our house as I write this.

So, after all the years I spent fleeing my Upstate NY hillbilly roots, I find myself embracing them again. I still wonder what the neighbors will think about the pool. But not enough to give up trying it out this summer. Ever since I was a kid I've dreamed of having a pool of my own. But my family was pretty poor and I never had that pleasure. Now I'm going to be able to see the glee on my kids' faces and feel the exact same emotion stir inside me. What could be better?

This feels like a big milestone. I mean, I know it's a ridiculous thing, just a pool. But that's the point. For many years now I've felt like I just didn't have it in me to put forth much extra effort in life beyond what needed to be done to keep everyone clothed and fed and breathing without a tube. When you are in survival mode due to fear or pain or grief, it's all you can do to grit your way through each day. And now here I am, debating whether or not my neighbors will dub me a redneck if I get a pool. What could be more frivilous? It's like I'm almost ... normal. Something nearby normal, anyway.

Yee haw!


thrice said...

Aww shucks, don't feel bad. I'm living with three kids in a large-one-bedroom apartment. Who would have ever thought that, but I would much rather have the kids than a larger apartment.

Anyway, I would love to jump in your pool. ANYTIME. Good choice, cause, y'know it will make the kids happy.

Wabi said...

Thrice, Snobby Wabi is quite the prissy snot, isn't she? I'm embarrassed by her. And surprised she exists, given my background. I guess that's why I wrote about the Sybil Showdown at Target.

Antigone said...

Oh summertime! We had snow here just the other day. A pool sounds wonderful

Julia said...

Mmmm... so tempting to come over... Too bad the commute is on the expensive time.
Maybe Snobby Wabi would be mollified by having a snotty cocktail by her above ground pool? Doesn't a cocktail make everything more agreeable?

Lori said...

I like Julia's suggestion. And I think both Snobby Wabi and Wabi Foxworthy are hilarious! What a fantastic inner dialogue! If only my self-talk were half as interesting!

Enjoy your pool!!

thrice said...

I have my snobby-side as well. In fact my quality of life is so inferior to the way I grew up and I thought that I grew up poor!

I'm living a curve ball.