I know you could all insert yourselves into this scenario. Mon., I go used car shopping with-a friend, to narrow down choices for easy child, who just got her license last wk. Imagine picking out 3 outfits for your toddler and giving her a "choice." Friend LOVES cars and is very helpful fending off salesmen, talking fast and getting in and getting out. But then for some reason, friend stops listening to me and sends salesmen all over kingdom come to find cars I don't want. I get cranky, my blood sugar drops. We narrow it down to 3 cars at 3 dealerships. Time to p/u easy child and difficult child at school. Normally I would have left difficult child at after-care but he was SO excited for these test drives that I gave in. (Do I EVER learn? Sometimes I think someone dropped me on my head as a baby.) Friend gets even more excited with-easy child in the car. He's bipolar, by the way, so maybe he was manic) and gets bossy. At one point, he gets behind the wheel instead of letting easy child drive, because he has taken professional racing lessons and is going to show her how to test the suspension and braking. Imagine a maniacal rollercoaster ride on a hot day. You're hungry, easy child is grumpy because someone else is driving, and difficult child is totally negative. You're squished in the back seat. Every time you corner, whiplash style, difficult child screams at you for digging your elbow into him or breathing too close to his ear. Friend gets out and lets easy child drive (thank doG!). Then we find "the perfect car." Too good to be true. This is one that friend and I have scoped out earlier in the day. No sticker on the window. Salesman throws out a price verbally. By the time we come back with-easy child, he's gone, bookkeeper looks up price, disappears for 1/2 hr (grrr), finally admits the price is off by $3000. Promises another car in better price range. Can't find it in lot. We wander the desert for 40 days and 40 nights. I am totally exhausted and ticked and we all leave. difficult child spends next 15 min. on ride home complaining about my friend and I repeatedly tell him to be quiet. easy child and difficult child want to go out for Mexican because it's Cinco de Mayo and they want to eat and party. I cannot think of any worse torture (except for another test drive with-my wannabe racecar driving friend). The lines are around the bldg. We find another Mex restaurant, I decide kids can go back on their own--but guess what? difficult child hasn't done his homework. Not only that, he argues about it. I am close to pulling a gun at this point. There is no food in the house and I don't care if we all starve. I have a piercing headache and do not want to talk or otherwise interact with-any living being. easy child suggests taking homework with-them and she will make sure it gets done. (Bless her!) Next day, difficult child has lost all his privileges and wants to earn back two wrestling dolls. I give him a list of things to do, incl. mulching a few places in the yard. He INSISTS he knows all about gardening and mulching but also INSISTS I supervise. He even used the word "supervise." Defeats the purpose of chores, in my humble opinion, because I had hoped to finish making dinner while he was outside. He needs constant attention. We spend an inordinate amt of time getting mulch into the wheelbarrow because difficult child refuses to use a pitchfork. Won't even use two hands--one is good enough. He then THROWS the mulch all over my pansies, instead of sprinkling it in between, like I have shown him. After squawking about having to touch it with-both hands (lord knows why getting two hands covered with-mulch is worse than one) he finally gets it done. Ea time I try to help he loudly shouts "STOP! YOU'RE not supposed to DO THAT!" I tell him we need thick mulch, not such a small amt that you can still see the dirt. He argues that he knows what he's doing. I tell him I've got nearly 4 acres and have written magazine articles about gardening so of course that starts an argument. His reasoning is that "I know about wrestling so of COURSE I know about gardening!" (Say what? :crazy1 Square shovel does not work well getting more mulch into wheelbarrow so I suggest a pitchfork. difficult child comes back with-an axe. An AXE!!!! Uses it sideways as a shovel and insists it's much easier and he is brilliant. Like an idiot, I suggest that since he's got the axe, he chop up dead azalea stump we keep tripping over. He insists he knows how to use an axe and proceeds to kneel and hold it near the head. I tell him he's got to hold it nearer the end, for leverage, like a baseball bat (he loves baseball so I think this is a good idea). He totally ignores me and--guess what? Smashes his hand between the stump and the axe head. (I'm darn lucky it wasn't the sharp end.) Get this--even as he's fighting tears and walking in circles, holding his hand and groaning, he continues to insist that he KNOWS how to USE an AXE and that it was just that he got too close to the stump. He refused to go in and ice because he desperately wanted those wrestling dolls and still had to finish mulching another tree. Stubborn, stubborn, stubborn. If he'd been spurting blood from his aorta he still would have insisted. He does several more tasks, I give him the 2 dolls, as promised. 2 min. later, he comes into my ofc, sits on top of my desk, and says, "Can I have another one?" AAAAAAAAARRRRRGGGGGG!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!