Coffee with the Bad Moms

Bad Moms Coffee
Originally uploaded by GraceD.

Grace came to coffee hour with the badass mamas! And Elswhere (Travels in Booland) was visiting too! Sadly… Squid and Jo weren’t there and were much missed.

It’s been what, four years I’ve been going to the cafe with this bunch, every Thursday morning? I remember the point where suddenly all our babies were at preschool. That’s why we said we were the bad moms – we were in theory having a playgroup, but the kids were all basically stuffed in daycare at that point. While many of the other moms we knew were still hand-grinding the babyfood and prattling about the precious moments, we were bitching about never wanting to see another human being’s bodily waste ever again in our lives and flaring our nostrils at the scent of any “grown-up time”. So someone started joking about how we were the Bad Moms Club… and then the Badass Moms Club… or I heard also that some other people called us the Commie Mommies. (I think that was Cathie. We’re not really used to the thought that Cathie died.)

The time we spent and still spend together WITH kids is super important to me. I get to watch everyone else’s parenting and learn from it. These guys (except SuperT) all have kids who are slightly older than mine, so I got to see every new problem come up, and how they handled things with humor and tenderness… or maybe with a bitter edge of bitchy ranting. (I don’t think I’ll ever get over the pleasant shock of knowing that JP, who seems so calm and together and preppy, long ago refused to do her husband’s laundry ever again.) We usually pass books around and just kind of catch up on our lives and gossip. Now that we don’t see each other every day at preschool or the park it seems even more important to make time to hang out together.

At coffee I always try to hold the babies to give everyone else a break. I like them as temporary squeezable objects, I know how to entertain them, and it’s nice to see my nursing mom friends eat with two hands, you know? Plus as one of the moms who has only one kid, I figure I can share the energy. The real reason though… I kind of like babies. They’re always so bewildered and strange, like they’re totally on drugs.

Mona, the cafe owner, lately always comes out to steal away Squid’s baby, so I haven’t been holding her quite so much.

I’m extremely sentimental about the cafe itself! It’s in this kind of scungy area with a lot of used car lots, industrial metal buildings and warehouses, and auto body shops. It’s been gentrifying a little but there’s still a gritty, seedy industrial feel to it and then you walk in and there’s an oasis of nifty architecture, light, art on the walls, music, and great food.

Mona is sort of the ultimate earth mama. She gets up at 3am every morning to start baking, and goes home a bit after 2. (How does she do it?) She manages everything with… I want to say artistry or mastery or both. The sort of person who notices everything. Her employees rock, and they stay for years and years so you know she’s not secretly horrible to them – even though it’s a hard job. Bob, her husband, sort of mooches around doing the coffee roasting and giving customers a hard time. He plays up… on purpose… being a daft old coot. Or a codger. One of those “c” words. The kids are a little scared of him, but in a good way.

The blueberry pie and the rhubarb crisp are great… homemade and not too sweet.

Hmm, I’m off the track, but that’s where I went while I looked at the photo and thought about how hungry I am right now.

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