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TOO MANY APPS
Burn them down.
Last week I was inspired to tweet the following tweet.
School started last week, and while this was 100% me on Wednesday morning as I bid my little darlings farewell, instead of feeling a slight reprieve from the juggle of writing work, domestic work, and childcare, the onset of school has someone made things feel more chaotic?
We live approximately 18 minutes from school and sports fields, and both my big kids play soccer. They get off the bus around 4:24, and have a solid 15 minutes before we have to get in the car and drive them right back from whence they came. The two kids also have soccer practices on opposite days so we are at soccer on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and Friday (WHY IS ANYTHING ON A FRIDAY EVER). Our youngest needs to be picked up from preschool at 4 in the midst of this. We get home from everything circa 6:30 by which point everyone’s ravenous and unless we’ve made a casserole or whatever in advance, we’re generally screwed and end up boiling water for pasta in a manic frenzy. It’s super casual and very relaxing.
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I know this is very standard schedule chaos for people with elementary school aged kids, but I still find myself unable to understand how any of us are doing this without fully cracking up. Can there be an after-school activity Uber? Can there be more accessible after-school programs? Can there be once-a-week soccer instead of twice-a-week soccer? Something? Anything?
My schedule rant is really a preamble to set up the stage for my main rant, which has to do with the aforementioned tweet.
In addition to feeding our kids, cleaning up after our kids, sounding out vowel sounds with our kids, breaking up kid fights, reminding kids to say thank you, enforcing basic hygiene habits for our kids, and occasionally remembering to breathe, we also must make room in our lives for The Apps.
There’s an app for “virtual learning” (the most cursed phrase in recent memory).
There’s an app for school-wide communication.
There’s an app connected to the school-wide communication app but which has different log-in info according to classroom.
There’s an app for soccer.
There’s ANOTHER app for soccer.
There’s an app for soccer uniforms.
There’s an app for piano lesson payment.
There’s an app for school lunch.
There’s an app for the trampoline park at which a friend is celebrating their birthday.
Eventually there’s an app for after-school skiing.
There’s an app for the pottery place at which another friend is celebrating their birthday.
There’s an app for daycare.
There’s an app for after-school activities.
There’s an app (perhaps the shittiest of all) referred to as a “patient portal.”
There are (and I can not stress this enough), too many apps.
The apps are all different but they are all identical in that they all suck. They make Pinterest (an app with a history of a pretty consistently shitty user experience) seem like the apex of NASA innovation (I don’t think NASA creates apps but they’re science-y and tech-y so).
When I receive an email about a new app, I typically send my husband the following email.
He typically does. But on the rare occasion I find myself forced to deal with The Apps on my own, something about the experience saps my will to live. I spend 10 minutes filling out standard forms about birthday and grade. I spend 10 minutes trying to figure out why my registration isn’t going through. I spend 18 minutes trying to add two kids to one account. I fail. I email the sports coordinator person and try to not sound unhinged. “Hi there, I’m having trouble figuring out how to add a sibling to a family account. Can you please help?” He sends me screenshots and truly I just can’t so I don’t. I get a new email two days later warning me that my “player” will be unofficially registered (for 8-YO SOCCER) and might be ineligible for play at this weekend’s game unless I figure out the app in time.
I tug at my hair.
Usually I give up and simply email my husband again.
9 times out of 10, Brett does the apps.
But I still hate them.