Which ice cream cone are you?

On a hot summer’s day about eight years ago, I had an epiphany.

To beat the heat, we had gone to Times Square in Causeway Bay to do some shopping with the kids. Just as we were about to leave we spotted an ice cream shop that sold trendy Japanese ice cream that staff transform into gigantic pyramids atop square sugar cones.  We just had to have some.

We were eagerly lapping our 6-inch-high pointed confections when my husband suddenly remembered that the meter where he had parked the car would soon run out. We quickly left the mall and, as usual, my husband and daughter steamed ahead while my son and I took our time.

We hadn’t gone far when my son stopped because his ice cream was dripping all over the cone, his hand, and down his arm and clothes.  I stopped to help him, while trying in vain to control my own melting cone.  It was quite a task holding shopping bags, stemming the tide of two ice cream cones, and at the same time fishing for tissue in my black hole of a purse.

Being more than I could handle, I called out to my husband and daughter:  “Wait!  I need your help!”

Hearing my cry, they turned in unison. The first thing that struck me was their twin display of perfectly groomed cones.  I was in awe. Perfectly licked with not a drip in sight, their cones looked almost like the plastic ones displayed at the ice cream shop!  How was that possible?

This is a 'cool' cone.

This is a ‘cool’ cone. Notice the perfectly polished nails!

Instead of running back to help (as I would have done), they stood there in shock with a look of horror on their faces.

Help!” I called again, then pleaded with my eyes, since I couldn’t keep yelling at them from across the plaza. I looked at my son and we burst out laughing at how out-of-control our cones were becoming.

This is a ‘bumbler’ cone!

That did it, I guess, for my ‘cool’ husband and daughter.  They turned and started walking away!

My son looked at me in confusion, and I reassured him, saying: “Oh, never mind them.  They just don’t know how to have fun.”

We finally got ourselves reasonably cleaned up and made our way to the car where my husband and daughter were seated in cool air-conditioned comfort, waiting for us patiently.

“Why didn’t you help us?” I asked, more bemused than upset.

“Mom, seriously? Did you see yourselves?” my daughter replied.

“Why?  What’s the problem?” I countered.

“You are both such, such….bumblers!” she said, her face contorted in disgust, as if this were a thing to be avoided at all costs. She then tucked her hair neatly behind one ear, crossed her ankles daintily, and quietly went back to reading a book she had bought earlier that day.  My husband gave me a similar look (and a smile) in the rear-view mirror as he started the car.

After a minute (since I’m never quick with the comebacks), I declared smartly: “Well, you guys are just too ‘cool’ and actually a bit boring!”

They didn’t deign to reply.

I looked at my son and we both shrugged.  “Bumblers forever,” I whispered conspiratorially.

He nodded and we both grinned, confident that while we may not have perfect ice cream cones, we are perfect in our own way!