Writer. Adventurer. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a series of steampunk novels and short stories.

Pop Quiz! What Color Is Your Underwear?

You should never be asking yourself this question while standing in your toddler’s preschool, but that is exactly what I asked myself today. You see, I was the victim of a toddler-induced wardrobe malfunction, and no, we did not rehearse this before hand with tearaway garments that had been cleverly stitched. Sweetpea prefers to be in the moment, improv style.

I had taken Sweetpea for a doctor’s appointment and was dropping her back at the Jewish preschool. We’re not Jewish, but it’s an amazing school, and Sweetpea loves it there. Since I had business meetings in the afternoon, I had worn a new peach-and-black dress and wedge heels. I thought the color toned down the winter-whiteness of my calves.  (This is notably not a picture of me.  I’m not that statuesque).

So you can’t just drop your toddler off at preschool, no no no.  You need to stay for a few minutes to chat, unless the kids are screaming, then you’ve got the green light to hightail it out of there.  So I’m chatting with the teachers, telling them about Sweetpea’s progress and bragging about my child in general, as it my motherly right.  Sweetpea, however, is hanging on my leg with all the grace of a clawless tiger cub and trying to get my attention.  Plowing through the obligatory conversation so I can get to my previously mentioned meeting, I squeeze her hand and ask her to be patient.

I’m wrapping up my explanation of how I’m sure Sweetpea will have a perfect SAT score when three workmen walk past us wearing huge grins.  I mean that these were like cat who ate the cream, the mouse, and the canary all in one sitting grins.  As they stroll past, one of them flashes me a wink.  That is when I realize I’m feeling a draft…

“Sweet Jesus,” I shouted, snatching my skirt out of Sweetpea’s hand and yanking it down to cover my underwear, which apparently had been display for everyone in the hallway.  Crap, what color was my underwear?

That’s when I also realize that my mouth has gotten me in trouble again.  Mentioning Jesus, no matter the context, in a Jewish daycare feels awkward, and swearing in front of your daughter’s teachers feels doubly awkward. Pasting on all the bravado I can muster, I apologize for my outburst and shuffle Sweetpea off to mash Legos into Play-doh.

As I was leaving I saw the trio of workmen again, heading back towards me.  I beat a hasty retreat to my car, praying that no one tried to give me their phone number.

So, what color underwear was I wearing?  Was it the pink pair with hearts and ruffles, or the red pair with polka-dots and a bow?  Or maybe it was the exotic animal print pair?  Well, I’m not gonna tell, and if you ask Sweetpea, she’s highly unreliable with her colors.  If she says they were blue, she’s lying!


Sweetpea at the local park, plotting her next dastardly deed! :D (But isn’t she so darn cute?)

12 comments on “Pop Quiz! What Color Is Your Underwear?

  1. Saronai
    April 20, 2013

    I love innocent child mischief stories and this one didn’t disappoint. Very amusing, thanks for sharing, I’d have been highly embarrassed too hehe.

    • tracycembor
      April 26, 2013

      Glad you enjoyed! Every day is an adventure with Sweetpea. ;)

  2. katemsparkes
    April 20, 2013

    She’s adorable, and that story made me laugh. It’s funny when it’s not me… I almost had this happen a few weeks ago. My kids aren’t used to seeing me in skirts, it was a novelty.

    When they were babies, it was sticking their hands down my shirt. I think kids are programmed to humble us or something. :)

    • tracycembor
      April 26, 2013

      Yeah, I ended up buying new bras because they were on display all the time when Sweetpea was a baby. Glad I was able to share a laugh. :D

  3. Kira Lyn Blue
    April 20, 2013

    Oh noes! Just think though of all the opportunities you’ll have once she reaches her teens to exact your revenge! You should start making a photo album now for when boyfriends come to call…

    • tracycembor
      April 26, 2013

      Yes, many pictures of Sweetpea eating spaghetti have been collected for just such a purpose. xD If I can survive her that long, I will have my revenge! ;)

  4. Katie
    April 20, 2013

    Just another day as a mom! :) And yes, she’s super cute!

    • tracycembor
      April 26, 2013

      Just another day in the life with Sweetpea… ;) Hope you enjoyed!!

  5. John W. Howell
    April 21, 2013

    Nice story. The “Sweet Jesus,” part made me laugh.

    • tracycembor
      April 26, 2013

      Yeah, my mouth malfunctions are funny after the fact, but not so much so at the time. /shrugs

  6. pishnguyen
    May 22, 2013

    I just loved this post. The same thing happened to me when I was volunteering at my daughter’s preschool. Ah … memories.

    Your daughter is so, so, so adorable!

    • tracycembor
      May 23, 2013

      I’m sooo glad I’m not the only one! They don’t tell parents about the hidden embarrassment traps at preschool! And thanks for the kind words about Sweetpea, I’m kinda partial to her too. ;)

Comments are closed.


This entry was posted on April 19, 2013 by in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , .

Posting Schedule for 2014-15

Monday through Friday I will be posting about writing as business and craft, the science of creativity, all things steampunk, and progress on The Dreamless City.

Weekends are reserved for my Music Playlist.

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About the Author

Tracy Cembor attempts to juggle a preschooler and a baby, a full-time job, random geekery, and the writing life. Currently working on The Dreamless City, a steampunk urban fantasy novel. Come join the adventure.
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