Sunday, March 15, 2009

In Pursuit of Perfection

I have a confession to make. I always act like I don’t judge people. I pretend to be really laid back and that I don’t care how other people live their lives, raise their kids or write their books. But there is one thing that’s a deal breaker for me. One fatal flaw that I will never be able to overlook: the perfectionist.

Now, I’m not talking about the people that are hard on themselves or have high expectations for all of the things they do in day-to-day life. Believe me, I’m right there with you. I want to be the best wife, mother, writer, and woman that I can possibly be.

No, I’m talking about the infuriating people that are hell bent on making it appear as though their life is sheer perfection. They’re the mothers that judge you for not making your own baby food from scratch, the women who slowly look you up and down to assess your outfit, your approximate weight and height and whether or not you’ve been vigilant with your visits the gym over the past week. They’re the women who never have a bad day, never fight with their husbands and ALWAYS wake up smiling. Their kids have never watched any television and they probably haven’t had a white carb in the past year. They’re fake and I can put up with a lot of things in friends, but fake isn’t one of them.

I don’t want to hear about how perfect your kids are or how loving your husband is. I want to hear about the days when your son pukes in your face and you wind up sneaking a cigarette in your back yard. I want to hear about the mornings that you’re so tired that you turn on the movie Cars to entertain your kids while you catch an extra hour and 43 minutes of sleep on the couch. I want to hear about the times when your husband comes home from work and has the nerve to ask why dinner isn’t ready and the house is a disaster.

Perfect is boring. Perfect is overrated. Perfect is a waste of time. I prefer reality, thank you very much.


Tara said...

Well done!

PurpleClover said...

Usually they are the one's that secretly hire a house cleaner and have someone babysit about two or three times a week but don't advertise that. :)

I'm not a perfectionist but I am openly judgemental. And you can better believe if someone is more perfect than me (which isn't hard to find) I've already found about fourteen flaws in them. ;)

Shelli said...

hey so glad I foundyou guys too - fun! I always love new blogger buddies. i like to pretend I am a rejectist. I do a bunch of reject things and then when I do something right - everyone is amazed ;)

Lisa and Laura said...

Tara - Ha! It's like the anti-thesis of us, right?

Purple - Openly judgemental is fabulous. I can get on board with openly judgemental because typically it's highly entertaining (and really, who doesn't like to be entertained?). It's the people who act like they're SO nice and non-judgy and are secretly judging your every move that drive me nuts. Ugh.

Shelli - Being a rejectist is great! Sign me up. I'll never forget when my mom told me that she was "surprised that I turned out to be such a good mom." Classic.

sraasch said...

People actually MAKE their own baby food? Woa. Hard core.

Anonymous said...

Okay, I swear if my neighbor tells me one more time that I should feed my kids strictly organic, I will go postal! Sometimes, a bag of M&Ms is the only leverage I have, you know??!

Lisa and Laura said...

Sara - I know Mom's that brag about making their own baby food, rave about their baby food maker (it's a machine, seriously) and lament the lack of fresh organic produce with which to make baby food in Cleveland. It's hard core.

Becca - Classic moment in my life is when Catherine called my cell to offer representation and I had to put her on hold to distribute suckers to the kids in hopes that they would let me talk. About half-way through the conversation, my daughter gagged herself with the lolly pop and started coughing. I'll never forget Catherine saying, this will be a great story for the blog. Yes, this is my life.

Little Ms J said...

I am socially awkward around perfect people. I can't even carry on a conversation with them since I know they're fake and feel like my hilarity is lost on Barbie dolls. Have you seen the Countess on Real Housewives of NYC? She has this whole, "Never let them see you sweat" mantra. Phooey. I want to see you fall in your pure bred horse's poop and choke on escargot, laughing the whole time. I'd like you then.

One of my girlfriends makes organic dog food, but she sneaks cigarettes all the time so I forgive her this small perfectionist flaw.

Loved the blog!

Lisa and Laura said...

Miss J - Oh the Countess and her damn book on manners. The woman would seriously have a heart attack if she were ever forced to dine with me. I shudder at the thought. I'll never forget her telling the bar tender "The Countess does not drink out of beer bottles." I mean, get over yourself.

Hi-larious that your friend makes organic dog food, although I do agree that the ciggie sneaking makes it a forgiveable offense.

Honestly, I can forgive just about anything as long as people are up-front and honest about it. People who can't make fun of themselves sort of suck, you know? I just can't imagine taking myself that seriously.

Kimberly Derting said...

I'm right there with you. I like to bitch and complain about my husband and kids, almost to the point that everyone around me probably thinks they're all a little retarded/lazy/psychopathic.

And as far as eating meals at our table, I would shudder to have the Countess join us! My daughter came back from a friend's house one time and told us that you aren't supposed to lean over your plate (Hello! I've been telling my kids to do this for years to avoid spills), that you bring your fork to your mouth instead. So as an experiment we all ate an entire meal sitting straight up and carrying our loaded forks (complete with peas) to our mouths. That is a LOT harder than it sounds. I ended up cleaning squashed peas off the floors for weeks. Now, they lean over their plates again!

Don't call this a comeback

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