Bronwyn Green

The Corner of Quirky & Kinky

I think some of you know that I am the carpool mom extraordinaire. Not because I’m a great driver, just because I’m super tolerant of teenage boyness.

In the afternoon, I pick up my son, Killian, and his friends Justin and Mitchell from school. They’re tall and gangly with long hair and loud voices. They laugh too loudly and have wicked senses of humor. They’re jaw-droppingly wise and ridiculously stupid all at the same time. In short, they’re teenage boys, and I adore them.

A week or so ago, they were talking about annoying preppy girls.

Me: So what makes them annoying?
Justin: Seriously. Have you ever heard one talk?
Me: Not recently…no. What’s the prob.
Killian: Everything’s a question.
Me: What do you mean?
Justin: It’s the upward inflection at the end of every single freaking sentence.
Mitchell: What’s an upward inflection?
Killian: You know, the last word in every sentence goes up like they’re asking questions even when they aren’t.
Mitchell: Whaaaat?
Justin: (speaking in a high girly voice) I’m gonna go to my locker. It’s lunchtime.
Killian: (also using a falsetto voice) I have gym class now. My name’s Brittany.
Mitchell: Can I copy your homework?
Killian and Justin: That is a question, Mitchell.
Me: (muffled laughter)
Mitchell: Oh…right.
Justin: It’s just so annoying.
Killian: Totally.
Mitchell: Huh…I just thought they were all really dumb.

Then there was today’s conversation.

Mitchell: There’s something wrong with a bunch of the dudes in my gym class.
Me: Oh?
Mitchell: Yeah. They run around the locker room all naked and stuff.
Me: Well, it is a locker room. I assume they’re either changing or showering.
Mitchell: Well, yeah. But it’s just not right, man. I mean, I shouldn’t hafta see another dude’s junk. It’s not right at all.
Me: Maybe they’re just comfortable with their bodies.
Mitchell: Maybe they’re just freaks.
Justin: Maybe they’re nudists.
Mitchell: Maybe, but they gotta keep their junk at home then. Duuuude…what would happen if you went to your friend’s house and they were all naked?
All three boys: collective groan
Justin: I wouldn’t sit down, that’s for sure.
Killian: Unless there was plastic on the furniture…maybe then.
Justin: Yeah. Plastic. Lots of plastic. Everything else is lava!

Then totally out of the blue, Mitchell who happened to be sitting in the front seat, turned to me and said, “So, my friend came out to me today.”

Me: Came out-came out?
Mitchell: Yeah. He said he was gay.
Me: What did you say?
Mitchell: I said, I did not expect that, but that’s cool.
Me: I think that’s great. A lot of guys wouldn’t have been very comfortable hearing that from a friend.
Justin: Was it in gym class?
Killian, Mitchell and me: Shut up, Justin.
Mitchell: No in the hallway. Some asshole was picking on him and calling him gay, and he said, I am.
Me: (fearing the worst) What did the other guy say?
Mitchell: He looked surprised for a minute and said. Really? Oh…okay. I guess I won’t pick on you then. You have enough to deal with. And then he just walked away.

I couldn’t have been more shocked. I know sometimes teenagers are a pain in the ass, but they’re all finding their way in the world. I have to say, they’re doing a great job. If a boy had come out like that when I was in high school, he would have likely gotten the crap kicked out of him and he’d have been run out of the school. I love progress and I love these boys. These are the ones I get to spend time with, and I couldn’t be happier. Being the carpool mom sucks because I really do hate to drive, but days like today make it all worthwhile.


18 thoughts on “Riding in Cars with Boys – Part One

  1. Mia Watts says:

    Having been IN the car with those boys, I totally conquer. They rock in this kind of freaky smart, surprisingly funny, totally unexpected way that made me bust out laughing.

    They're great boys but I happen to think they are three in a million. And one of them is yours so his awesome is understandable.

  2. Devon Rhodes says:

    I live a block from a high school, so I catch snippets of conversation amongst the teens all the time…hilarious and sometimes poignant stuff.

    Also have a load of nephews and nieces that are teens, the family reunion is always a trip (I'm a well-tolerated aunt because I'm the youngest of the “adult” generation and I listen to their kind of music, lol).

    Sounds like you have a great kid, love. πŸ™‚ Proud mama.

  3. Kris Norris says:

    Hey Girl

    I've had a few interesting conversations in cars myself. But what amazes me all the time is how kids pick the most unlikely moments to impress you, and instill the belief that maybe they aren't headed for Juvie Hall or a career as a serial killer after all.

    Give Killan the 'word' sign for me and tell him we're all proud.


  4. Great stories, Bronwyn,

    Kind of gives you hope, doesn't it?


  5. Fran Lee says:

    Yep…my teenaged sons all now have teenaged kids, but my teenaged grandson lived with me for 16 years of his 17 year life and he comes up with the most wonderfully insightful and most horribly “gah!” stuff in the world. His buddies all crowd into the back seat and joke about what they saw or did, and it's like “old home week”.

  6. Teens ARE different than we were 20plus years ago. THANK GOODNESS. My friends who are high school teachers tell me stories about their students and my jaw drops, in a good way.

    And your kid, he rocks.

  7. Teenagers DO have their moments! They make up for the rest of the time when you want to gag them or find their 'off' button:)

  8. Awww, thanks Mia, I think he's awesome, too. πŸ™‚

    Thanks Dev – I am a proud mama – proud of all of them, really. They're great kids.

    Kris – I swear I have the best conversations with these guys in the car – it's like it's the honesty box on wheels.

    Lisabet – It gives me so much hope. πŸ™‚

    Fran – I think it's so wonderful that you're there for your grandson. Do you see a lot of generational differences, or not so much?

    Marg – the difference is beyond amazing. I swear – they're not even the same species of kids we went to school with!!

  9. Funny funny. I wouldn't mind at ALL driving a carpool like that. What utterly cool guys! Yeah, maybe kids today are more sensitive than they used to be. No, not all of them. That would be too much to ask but SOME. It's a start.

    Terrific post, Bron.

  10. Molly – it's my 12 year old that needs an off button. OMG can that kid talk – he makes me look quiet – lol!

  11. Taylor Tryst says:

    My son's friends from the “Cities” come up every summer for a week. When I sit and hang out with them, cooking dinner with them, etc. they just crack me up. Their conversations go from killing zombies to catching Osama Bin Laden. I mean, they are now in their twenties, but they can still revert to those same old seventh graders when they all first met in seconds.

    Usually has me shaking my head and laughing my ass off.

    Hugs, and a great topic by the way!

  12. Jude Mason says:


    I about fell off my chair laughing when they talked about the plastic on the furniture. What a bunch of goofballs.

    Kids, no matter what age, amaze me. The know so much, but so little at the same time. It sounds like you've got a winner, and he's got two great friends.


  13. Great Blog post, Bronwyn! It makes me miss the days when my son, who is almost 22, was a teen.

    But I'm sure my youngest (who is 5) will be there in no time.


  14. Jess says:

    LOL Since I got to hear those boys today, I have to say they are awesome. πŸ˜€ I can see why your day brightens after the rides home!

  15. Susilien says:


    I love the Mom Mobile conversations. They are awesome. I miss being the Aunt Mobile to my nieces and nephews. Koodos on the excellent job with your son & his friends.

  16. Anna says:

    That sounds like one of those heartfelt moments that gives you hope for the world. And the boys sound absolutely priceless.
    You make me wish I had kids of my own. I hope I can one day raise mine half as well. ^_^

  17. Anny Cook says:

    Nice that “different” is okay…Wish is was back when I was a kid.

  18. OMG, this is SO AWESOME! I'm with you – I love teenage boys…

    Okay, that just sounds sooooo wrong. What I mean is, I don't automatically run from them or hide my valuables like so many people do, just because they see a bunch of teen boys with long hair and black shirts and piercings.

    Really! That's what I meant!

    …stop looking at me like that. πŸ˜›

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