Competing With a Legacy

There is a scene in the movie Baby Boom that I've always found particularly absurd. Diane Keaton has taken her recently inherited toddler to a Manhattan park and while the little one busies herself in the sand box, Keaton sits back with a group of women who turn out to be quintessential neurotic Upper East Side moms.

The members of this brain trust hover about one mom who is nearly hysterical as she shares the devastating news that her son, who at that moment can be seen in the perimeter of the shot putting sand up his nose, did not get into the exclusive preschool they'd been gunning for. When Keaton innocently questions the import of said rejection she is accosted by all manner of warnings, the upshot being that if the kid doesn't get into the right preschool then you can forget the private primary and secondary schools which CLEARLY negates any possibility of the Ivy League. Duh, Diane!

Silly movie. Funny scene. I love hyperbolic humor.

In the far recesses of my mind I could acknowledge women like this do indeed exist. But not in my world. I am far too hip, funky, counter-culture for that nonsense.

At 10 months the Mamacita is on the waiting list for no less than 4 regional preschools. It could be more as these placements were made very early post-pregnancy when the hysteria of new motherhood pulsed through my veins, guiding my actions in the absence of any sentience. BABY. PRESCHOOL. MUST GO. BEST!

Now that I've actually researched these springboards to my daughter's future there is one that dominates. Oh, Ruth Washburn Cooperative Preschool, you are a beacon of light in an otherwise murky academic future. And you have a waiting list. With a points system.

Let's see...1 point for every month on the waiting list. The Mamacita will have almost 40 POINTS before it's time to tackle the 'Middle 3s'. A shoe-in! But what's this? A legacy program? An 18 Point bonus for siblings of former RWCP students? Six points for kids of alumnae? It's a racket, a set-up. A pint-size con. Not that I'm going to get caught up in any such nonsense.

When I called today to check the Mamacita's status I was told she is two spots shy of a guarantee. Bastard legacies. Might as well take the organic graham crackers right from her mouth. Mark my words, Barbie heads will roll.


Anonymous Imperfect Mommy said...

Oh how I know this one... Madeline was on the waiting list at one place til she was 3 1/2, when she finally got in after my boss pulled some strings. But with her food allergies things were tough there. We are delighted now though b/c she is in a Montessori preschool that we absolutely love. So chill and focused on the right things.

However, I am thinking about switching her to Ruth Washburn Cooperative Preschool for two reasons! Wine tastings? Hello? Now that's a way to appeal to parents! And now peanut free? You had me at the wine! Now do those tastings occur after drop off or pick up?

March 31, 2006 8:07 AM  
Blogger moxiemomma said...

"barbie heads will roll"! :) love that!

so glad we don't live in one of those crazy competitive preschool places. our boy is in montessori school like IM's girl--but! bonus! we get wine tastings too!

April 04, 2006 8:45 PM  
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