Thanks to “Lipstick & Playdates” for –A Tribute To Shirley Partridge: The Coolest Single Mom Of All Time — for the great post. I started a comment, got a notification on my iPhone and couldn’t find it again. So I wrote a little post.
I completely agree, Shirley Partridge was the coolest single mom. But, had Shirley Partridge been a current day divorced single mom rather than a widow it would have been completely different.
There’s simply no way she could fit rehearsals and gigs in around the kids’ school work and visitations with Daddy. No way.
” You want us for a great gig next month? Oh sorry, no, the kids have to visit their father that day, any other dates? I can see if I can switch. Can I get back to you? No? “
Mr. Partridge would have the final say-so. If he won’t switch dates, no gig. Gotta work around “the schedule.”
And what about that cool bus? Painting that bus would surely have been used as evidence against Shirley, calling into question her sanity and her parenting ability.
I can see it now:
Lawyer: Mrs. Partridge, how do you and the children expect to travel to these, what do you call them?
Mrs. Partridge: Gigs.
Lawyer: Gigs? Ah, yes, gigs. And again, how do you suppose to arrive at the destination of these gigs.
Mrs. Partridge: By bus.
Mrs. Partridge: Yes.
Lawyer: How did it come to look like this?
Lawyer: The children painted an old bus. No further questions . . . except . . . Tell me, does Danny play football?
Mrs. Partridge: What? No. Have you seen Danny? No. He has no interest. Plus, the other kids would probably kill him or he’d convince them to kill each other.
Mrs. Partridge’s family time consists of children either spending countless hours in the garage playing rock music or riding for hours on a psychedelic bus going who knows where to be put on display . . .
And consider this young boy, Danny — instead of playing football or soccer as young boys should, he’s painting buses and playing bass in a “family” rock band. It seems that a lack of male influence is having an unfortunate effect on this boy.
Then there is a “Manager” — music business executive — a man — seen coming and going from the house at all hours, and spending time alone with the children, including a teenaged girl.
This is no kind of family life to model for these impressionable minds. Clearly, Mr. Partridge is within his rights to prohibit his children from performing in this “band” and disallow any changes in the visitation schedule to accomodate such a pursuit. Such rehearsals and performances should not interfere with the time the children are scheduled to spend with Mr. Partridge and his second wife and growing family.
Mr. Partridge is making a family. Mrs. Partridge is making a band.
No, no, no. Had Shirley been going through a divorce she would have been forced into the traditional suburban housewife role. Ironic, isn’t it? She’d probably have to take a low paying but steady, boring job, pay other people to give the children music lessons and present them, like clockwork and with a smile, to the court devised visits with their father. There would simply be no time for a band. Time can be divided upon divorce, but not created. And interests that may have been supported within a marriage, can become a battleground after. Yup, Mrs. Partridge would pretty much have to walk the straight and narrow and live by schedules forced upon her by somebody else’s system — somebody who has never even thought about playing in a band.
Yeah, I’m guessing divorced Shirley girl would always have open bottle of Xanax or Vodka nearby. That’s much more acceptable to most: misery and medication — over music.
Just Me With . . . no band, no bus, and a drum kit collecting dust in my basement.
Bitter in Suburbia.