|Girls at the pool snack bar|
There is a scene in that creepy/scintilating/riveting movie "Little Children" where the two key characters are gathered at a public pool along with the rest of creation, laying side by side, their attraction to each other intensifying as children and adults splash around on a hot, hot day. Then, the child sex offender shows up to -- as he proclaims eventually -- cool off. The crowd parts around him and he is forced to leave.
That scene has stuck with me. Not the child sex offender part, but the all-of-creation-showing-up-at-the-public-pool-to-cool-off part. I love that. That sound of grownups and children talking, egging each other on, laughing, spraying water, the lifeguard whistle...those for me are the quintessential sounds of summer.
All of creation has shown up. It's insanely hot and we all need to cool off. It's a respite from the day, from work, from everything outside the pool. I submerge in the water and everything is good. I have little kids so at this point in my life, I don't mind all the other little kids. Maybe I will later, maybe I won't.
And there is specific food tied to the swimming pool snack bar: hot dogs, pizza, pretzels, soda, ice cream, and candy. For me (as a kid) it was bubble gum. I could not have enough gum. Big League Chew had just come out, and it was pretty trendy in my circle of fourth grade friends. That's right: we loved gum that was made to look like chewing tobacco. Ugh. I have sat next to someone who chewed tobacco and I can tell you that, aside from being a horrible, horrible thing to do, the sounds that come out of the person's mouth are...ugh. Moving on.
My kids gravitate toward the pretzels and ice cream at the pool snack bar. The pretzels are huge and bready, which my daughter loves. They ask if you want cinnamon or salt -- obviously salt. She's half Indian you guys! No half-Indian is going to ask for cinnamon! She picks at it like a bird, relishing every single bite, and not one little piece of salt is missed. If she runs for president, her slogan will be: No Salt Left Behind. Or carbs. No Salt or Carbs Left Behind.
I am partial to the pool snack bar hot dogs. Not good, but not bad. Look people, life is short.
There is, before Labor Day, a mental health day in my future and I will lay by the pool, alone. No kids, no one; just a book, the pool, and lots of basking in the sounds of summer. And possibly, maybe a hot dog.