and always carry a magic wand

Okay, I’ve been trying to get this post up for nearly two weeks. I do NOT have time this morning. Like at all. But I’m not so good at taking no for an answer, even from myself, so I’m going to do this if it kills me. We have four minutes, kids. Hang on tight.

It started just before my birthday. I got an email offering discounted tickets to the Potted Potter, an off-Broadway, two-man musical parody of the entire Harry Potter Series. My kid has read Harry Potter some twenty-six times. No, seriously. It’s like meth, that stuff. The kid just can’t get enough. So, despite the fact that I had only read up to book three and not quite made it through the first movie (listen, you put me in a chair in a dark room, Mama’s going to sleep), I asked Luau to get tickets to the show for my birthday.

At the time, I was convinced that it was a truly selfless act – I assumed that my enjoyment of the show would be that I would get to watch Katie enjoy the show. But she had other ideas.

She decided that in order for me to share in the fun, I should catch up on the story. And of course, the best way to do that was by watching all 842 movies before the show. Right. Please see “you put me in a chair in a dark room, Mama’s going to sleep.” I tried, folks. I really, really tried. So, she resorted to Plan B. As soon as we got to the theater, she told me the story. All of it. Yeah. Moving on.



After we’d found our seats, Katie asked to visit the concession. I’d flown back from New York an hour before we’d left for the show. When I travel, I extract the important stuff from my wallet and put it all into a pouch that I carry instead. The pouch that was at home. In my overnight bag. Meaning that I had eight dollars, meaning that not only would we not be able to afford a six-dollar bag of M&Ms and a four-dollar bottle of water, but we wouldn’t be able to get lunch. Or the car.

I. Am. Awesome.

We called Luau, because somehow that seemed like a good idea. I told him that I had a credit card in my wallet, but that I hadn’t called it in to activate it from the home phone yet so it was useless. He said, “Um, babe. You just called me at home. I can call it in for you.” Cause he’s the actual kind of awesome and when only one of us has the brain at a time, it’s really good when it’s him.

It turned out that the show was hilarious. Like Oh-my-God-stop-I-seriously-might-pee hilarious. The audience-participation Quiddich game put me over the edge. It was awesome. And watching my kid in her element? Even more awesome. The whole thing was just plain, well, awesome. (Four minutes, people, “awesome” is all I’ve got.)

Afterward, we had plans across town, so I decided to move the car to my parking lot (meaning the one I already pay for) before lunch. And that’s when things got really, um, awesome.

First, I realized that I’d left the parking ticket in the car. Apparently the huge signs everywhere that said, “Bring ticket with you – yes, you – JESS THIS MEANS YOU” weren’t really enough to get the message across. So, at her request, I left Katie at the pay station and ran back to the car. (Okay, I didn’t really run, because no one was chasing me, but I hurried, I swear.)

When I got there, I tried to open the compartment where I’d put the ticket. (Hint: “tried” is the operative word.) No go.

I pulled and I yanked and I cajoled. I sweated and swore and I called it names. I asked God for a hand, but He was apparently far too entertained by the show I was putting on to end it prematurely.

Finally, I pulled the entire damn thing out of the car.



Leaving a gaping hole.

I figured that I’d bring it into the pay station in the hopes that the pay station guy would have something, anything, that I could use to extract the ticket from the, the .. thing. I’m not a car person, people, it’s the thing that goes in that there hole.

So I ran (okay, we’ve already covered my use of the word “ran” – go with it) back to Katie with the whole thing in my hand. Being my kid, she was nonplussed. I’m pretty sure her words were, “What did you do this time, Ace?”

I showed her the … thing. I turned it over so that she could see the edge of the parking ticket, mocking us as it was from the underside. I told her that I was going to bring it to the parking attendant to see if he could help.

And she said, “Give it to me.”

And I said, “Honey, I’ve been working on this for two hours (okay, ten minutes) and it’s seriously stuck. We need a tool of some sort to get it open.”

And she said, “Give it to me.”

And, like a petulant child – er, mature adult teaching her child the importance of believing in her ability to be self-reliant – I did.

She reached into her bag and pulled out a magic wand. Yes, seriously. Because who goes to a Harry Potter show without a wand in their bag? I mean, right? And she went to work.


And then she handed me the ticket.



And then I forced her to pose for a goofy picture. Because, duh.


And then we were able to pay for parking with the credit card that Luau activated and get on with our lives.

So, the moral of the story? It’s kind of a two-fer, I guess.

If you don’t have the brain with you, call the person who does and always, ALWAYS carry a magic wand.

You’re welcome.

25 thoughts on “and always carry a magic wand

  1. Oh have I had those days! I’ve had to call my husband from Target before because I left my wallet at home and was AT THE CASH REGISTER with a cart full of stuff being rung up. I never remember to take my parking ticket with me or, in the rare cases that I did, 1) I lost the ticket IN MY PURSE and couldn’t find it and 2) left it at the salon station where I had been sitting for 2 hours. Embarrassing is my middle name. 🙂

  2. awesome that you got to share something with her that she loved so much (anything harry potter related), and that you enjoyed as well. and even more awesome that she got to break out her super wizarding skills…just makes it all that much better.

    she’s sort of a harry potter/mcgyver hybrid.

  3. Envy envy envy — Rose and I have been watching the HP movies together — in our case, I read the books first and reeled her in after met, but we are now equally hooked. One movie left to go, can’t wait! And, she’s going to be Hermione for Halloween.

    I want to see that show with my girl! (Better yet, with you & your girl, you wouldn’t mind seeing it again, right? LOL!!)

  4. We’re going next week and trying it with the whole family. We’ll have our fingers crossed and be sitting in an aisle seat in case we need a quick getaway. Not that I’ve read your account I can’t wait to go.

  5. Too funny! Once I actually took the ticket to the pay station.. put it in my person…and then promptly lost the PAID ticket, arghhhh… makes me feel better that others do it! I did have the receipt so the guy let me out.. but sheesh!!

  6. I just came home from seeing Potted Potter in Sydney with my son! And as you said, it was “awesome”!!!
    We have not laughed so hard in a long time! And the quidditch game? Priceless! One of the girls in our group managed to slam the beach ball into the face of an elderly audience member. This then provided James and Ben with plenty of new material to incorporate into the show! Very, very funny! It was thanks to this post above that I even knew what the show was when I saw and advert for tickets! So, thank you!

  7. Jess – I got to this old post in a convoluted way. Suffice it to say that I started on Facebook (I’m the director for Open Door’s Shrek), but was searching for old posts about Katie and musicals, because, well, yeah. Musicals. And daughters. Anyway, I can’t help but agree that Potted Potter was fabulous. That is all. 🙂

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