She stood sulking in a Perfect Pink Princess Pout. Arms crossed over her bare bikini brown belly. Slender hip thrust out in rebellious defiance. Big brown eyes purposefully glaring past the exasperated swim teacher trying to get her to ‘cooperate.’ Banished from the pool because she wouldn’t answer the teacher’s question. PP didn’t hear exactly what the question had been, but it didn’t matter.
PPPP was not budging!
PP couldn’t help but grin to herself as she turned at the wall to start her next lap. The little hellion was quietly making a scene. All of her classmates were subdued and unsure. Splashing less boisterously in awe of PPPP’s fortitude?
And the teacher? She was pissed. PP couldn’t blame her. With a half a dozen or so 7 or 8 year olds she had her hands full. And while the group, as all kids seemed to be at the Y, were young and obnoxious, none of them could compete with PPPP’s sullen stubbornness.
This is what PP admired. Sure, she was being a pain in the ass for the poor exasperated teacher, but she had a quiet style that yelled, I WILL NOT OBEY YOU NO MATTER WHAT YOU SAY OR DO! I AM MY OWN PERSON AND IF I DON’T WANT TO ANSWER YOUR STUPID QUESTION YOU CAN’T MAKE ME, CAN YOU?
“You ready to cooperate with me yet?” Exasperated Teacher asked, the edge to her voice snaking into the chlorinated air.
No way. No how. No answer.
“Okay, it’s your call. Amber, Jason, Taisha and Lionel, Tiffany, right? Swim 3 laps fast now!” Sighing, ET glared at PPPP before following along with the other ‘Cooperative Ones’.
PPPP continued to stare over the top of the teacher’s head. Her gaze unwavering. No way in hell was she gonna crumble. Not now. Not 5 minutes from now. Not ever.
Plump Doe Eyed Lifeguard sauntered over to help. Put a hand lightly on PPPP’s wet shoulder, “Are you ok?”
No answer, of course. If she was gonna stonewall the teacher, she sure as hell wasn’t gonna break down for any Stupid Sympathetic Lifeguard.
“Is she ok?” SSL hollered at Exasperated Teacher.
“Yeah, she’s fine.”
”What’s the matter with her?”
”She wouldn’t answer a question for me.”
And with another light pat on PPPP’s slim shoulder, the SSL shrugged before heading off to the locker room, leaving ET to figure it out.
Of course, PPPP’s show drew a crowd. Gathered above the pool peering through the glass lookout down on the deck, friends and family of all the children were pointing and mouthing. PP picked PPPP’s mom outta the crowd as she shook her head, and disappeared, only to appear on deck minutes later, all motherly concern in smart white pedal pushers and lime green top, her shoulder length black hair falling stylishly in her dark eyes.
Turning around at the far end of the pool, PP watched in delight as mom kneeled down to chat with ET, shaking her head, arguing? Then rising, turned to her Uncooperative Child, taking her aside and talking seriously at her. Released? PPPP suddenly relaxed. Began dancing round on the deck, almost smiling.
What had mom said to her, PP wondered? Don’t worry honey, that Mean Teacher doesn’t matter. You don’t need to answer her stupid questions. Just keep acting like a little Prima Dona and dance?
PP began her warm down, pulling long slow strokes under the gray blue water. Had the lane to herself for a moment with both Rubric Cap Woman and Spastic White Guy Splasher now gone. Remembering herself at that age. The stubborn resolve born of ‘uncooperativeness.’ Not that PP had ever been an uncooperative child round any pool activities. But she surely must have manifested a few quiet tantrums on the tennis court!
Finishing up her laps, PP looked up. PPPP and mom were gone. The other little fish were getting out, giggling and pushing, but quiet for a group of kids at the Y.
Wonder what had happened to PPPP? PP mused. Did she just get to change, go home, watch ‘Dancing with the Stars’ and never have to come back to the Y ever again?
Grinning, PP heaved herself out of the pool. Hope not, she thought to herself, cause PPPP was certainly her own Dancing Star here at the YMCA!
And PP is certain that every pool deserves to have it’s own Perfect Pink Diva!