Wardrobe Malfunction

In case you’re wondering how scintillating I really am, let me tell you about my recurring dream in which I am folding laundry. That is all that I do in the dream; fold laundry. Even my dream self gets bored as I patiently fold shirts, towels, etc., and sort them into neat piles. Sometimes I’m able to wake myself up, like a person having a nightmare, by saying to my dream-self you’re having that boring dream again – wake up! Unfortunately, when I go back to sleep I often have my second recurring dream in which I’m making soup. Just me, stirring a large Dutch oven full of soup. Often the soup in question is eggplant soup, and sometimes I wonder if I should leave it chunky or puree it, and then I get out my blender. At this point I usually wake up.

If dreams indeed do mean anything at all, I wonder what these say about me. I’m afraid it wouldn’t be flattering.

But who needs exciting, anyway? The house has enough excitement without ME being a thrill-a-minute. While we were on vacation, I realized – not for the first time, nor for the last – that my husband truly is the fun parent. He’s the one cannonballing into the pool with the kids while I lazily float by, only in the water long enough to cool off before resuming my poolside book reading. He’s the one who could spend hours with them playing in the wave pool while I need to go warm up in the hot tub after ten minutes. He’s the one who takes them on epic bike rides and stages legendary water fights while I drink wine and gossip with my mother.


Me, hanging out lazily while my husband takes the kids on an epic ride in the utility vehicle.

It might be weird having two fun parents anyway; I mean, someone has to be the grim-faced harridan who oversees sunscreen application and adequate hydration and proper nutrition even while on holiday. So that someone might as well be me.

On occasion, I can be actually fun. I will go down any waterslide at a water park, I will go on any rollercoaster, and I even buy the kids the occasional sno cone or cotton candy, considering that all that sugar and food colouring is PROBABLY okay in moderation. We were at a very fun aquatic centre while on vacation, and the kids had a blast. They finished the afternoon by jumping off the diving board several times, and they urged me to join them. I declined, but then started to think that maybe I should. I should TRY to be fun, I want the kids to remember me as being occasionally adventurous and cool. I watched my husband do a spin jump off the diving board, to cheers from them, and so I decided yes. I hadn’t jumped off a diving board in thirty years but dammit, I can be fun too, I thought. I removed my hair band, patted my braid into place, and stepped onto the diving board. I jumped, then swam to the side. My husband looked at me for a moment, then informed me that my bikini top had not stayed where it was supposed to. Wardrobe malfunction! I fixed it and said that I hoped no one witnessed my embarrassment. He was silent for a moment, while I was briefly encouraged that I was right, that no one saw my nipple. Eventually he broke it to me; several people, including the lifeguards and the parents at the side of the pool, DID see. Oh.

Fun and exciting, it’s overrated. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some laundry to fold.


  1. Oh my.

    B is so much better than at being the fun mommy I often try to pull out all the stops when she’s traveling on business and there’s no competition. Sure, let’s eat dinner in front of the tv. Invite your insomniac best friend over for a sleepover? Why not?

  2. Oh dear.


    On the upside now the whole entire Janet Jackson discography is on a loop in my mind. Consolation?

    You are fun! Not only fun, but clearly wild and free!

    I love that you would share this. You are awesome!

  3. Silly husband, sometimes lying is a good thing!

    Nicole, I’ve loved seeing your writing evolve over the years. You pulled two quirky interesting stories about Nicole together into one solid post that I dearly enjoyed reading.

  4. Well, what’s a nipple between friends? And random strangers. And pool employees. That’ll teach you to be fun! I commend you for taking the plunge.

  5. I actually had to stop spending time with a former friend once she had children and it became apparent that both her and her husband wanted to be the fun parent. Neither of them enforced any rules and basically their kids ran wild until one of them was injured and then neither parent wanted to be the grown up and deal with the injuries. It realize it probably sounds shallow, but I actually couldn’t take being around that dynamic. Every family needs one parent to be the parent that’s less fun most of the time. Parents can trade off the fun parent role, but someone has got to be the adult most of the time.

    Speaking of adult, the diving board episode is why I’ve been afraid to even consider a bikini in the pool until Youngest is swimming well on her own and doesn’t suddenly grab on to me in the pool. I don’t think I’m cool enough to pull of a Janet Jackson without totally losing it.

  6. Nicole, you are always fun! Loved your story. Really made me giggle!

  7. Chrisi Beagle says

    Haha! Good one Nicole!

  8. Well the children will have lovely memories to tease mom about.

  9. We’re the same – my husband is the fun one and I’m the responsible one. I know it’s just not in me to be the super fun type, so I’m actually really appreciative of the fact that they at least have one parent who will show them a wild good time. I’m here to nurse the wounds :).


  1. […] I want to be open minded, I do not actually want to see a strange man’s testicles. And yet, I have accidentally flashed a nipple while swimming, so the same could be said about me. Maybe I disturbed someone’s inner peace that day, in the […]

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