Smelly Socks: You just have to dance

By Johanna Bloom
March 28, 2013 at midnight
Updated March 27, 2013 at 10:28 p.m.

Austin climbing the rock wall at Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World.

Austin climbing the rock wall at Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World.

Ranch Life

My family loaded up the car and headed to San Antonio to run a few errands and to get out of the house during spring break.

Of course, the boys and John deemed it an absolute necessity that we make a run to Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World near the beautiful The Shops at La Cantera shopping center. A stop by this store always provides them with new and exciting things to marvel at.

Bass Pro Shops will never be the same after an invasion by the Bloom family. Austin and Jamison examined all of the boats outside before we even entered the huge doors. Once inside, they dutifully headed toward the various four wheelers parked inside and on display.

The signs instructing visitors not sit on the four-wheelers were completely overlooked by my boys as they proceeded to test out the seats on all of the vehicles. John and I pointlessly reminded them about the sign to no avail. There they both sat making motor noises as they slid from side to side on the seats acting out some fantastic four-wheeler race scene.

Then the boys saw the rock climbing wall, and it was like a magnet. Their mouths stopped moving, and the trance between the boys and the wall began. After much jabbing back and forth, Austin decided that he could handle this new challenge.

I know that Jamison, my 9-year-old, really had no intention of actually climbing the wall himself. He just tried to see if he could convince Austin to climb the rock wall. He had a sly smile on his face, and his eyes seemed to twinkle brighter than usual through his glasses.

For anyone who knows him, this is a clear indication that he is scheming. It worked, and as usual, Jamison got Austin into the middle of something. As Austin was strapped into the safety harness, and a helmet was placed tightly on top of his head, some of his bravado started to leave him.

He began slowly and did amazingly well up unto the halfway point. At that point, you could see him begin to strain, and he was beginning to sweat as he attempted the final part of the climb. By this point, Jamison had switched from feeling as if he had gotten the best of Austin, to cheering him on with brotherly enthusiasm, "Go, Austin. Come on. You can do it."

My scrappy 12-year-old, with Jamison's brotherly encouragement, made it to the top of the wall and rang the bell of completion several times for the entire store to hear. With the excitement of Austin making it to the top, Jamison proceeded to do a dance that he must have picked up from watching an NFL game on TV.

I couldn't tell if the many onlookers were clapping for Austin's triumph or for Jamison's hip gyrations. My son certainly has some serious rhythm. After Austin was lowered down to the ground, there was a lot of high-fiving and congratulations between the brothers. Jamison tried to get Austin to join him in one last unusual hip movement, but he was stopped short with, "Enough is enough."

By the time we finished at Bass Pro Shops, I had my shopping game fine tuned. I suggested we make a run by The Shops at La Cantera outdoor shopping center. As we pulled up to the shopping center, John had a work call to take care of and the boys exclaimed that they were "too tuckered out" to manage one more store. With that comment, they all elected to stay in the car and wait for me.

However, I was completely delighted to continue on with my shopping. I was totally enamored by all of the shops, and the sale signs in the windows only added to my excitement. I admit that I am a true shopaholic, and a good deal is so irresistible.

After a few phones calls from my "worn out" group in the car asking how much longer I was going to be, I managed to carry out my packages to the car. Always helpful, Jamison hopped out of the car to help me rearrange the packages in the back of the car and the back seats so that everything would fit properly.

My enthusiasm with all my great purchases seemed to revive Jamison, and he helped me put my packages away. Austin and John just mundanely watched us from the comfort of the car. I could not contain my excitement over my bargains any longer, and I began to imitate Jamison's earlier dance from the rock wall.

Jamison giggled and caught the dancing bug again and decided to join me in the dance as we hollered in unison, "We bad; we bad; we bad." Upon our performance, John sank down in the car seat and said, "Oh for heaven's sake, look where we are. Not in public."

Austin chimed in with encouragement to keep it up, while he slyly reached for his iPhone to capture the moment forever. This quickly brought me to my senses, and I sheepishly got Jamison in the car and took my place for the ride home. John piped up with, "I don't think I have ever seen your face so red before."

I am desperately hoping that no one caught my dance on YouTube.

Johanna is a proud, seventh-generation Texan. She lives on her family's South Texas ranch with her husband and two lively boys. Email Johanna Bloom or Anita Spisak at



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