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I’ve discovered there’s more than one way to be the most popular mom at the school fair.

Some mamans slave over homemade madeleines, some donate bottles of Château Margaux wine to the raffle, and then there’s my tactic.

Flash the dads.

OK, so it wasn’t a part of the original plan. Last Friday was our first-ever school fair – and I was feeling the pressure. I knew I’d see Arabelle, the snooty Alpha-Maman who somehow managed four small children, ran the PTA with an iron fist, and baked the perfect quiche – all in peep-toe high heels. Her son Paul is pals with Big Fry, and I always dread her cold once-over glance as she looks at me like I’m a ver de terre that she inadvertently squashed with her 4-inch stilettos.

This time I was determined that there was no way Arabelle could accuse me of slacking off on my motherly duties. Armed with a homemade tarte aux abricots and my new violet linen wrap dress, I immediately signed up to man the pêche aux canards booth for the kiddies.

How hard could it be, right?

I wasn’t prepared for the onslaught of 80 French kids hopped up on bonbons and let loose for the evening. The next 30 minutes was a blur of accepting tokens and pushing fishing poles into grabbing hands eager to fish for plastic ducks in an inflatable swimming pool.

Paul and his dad elbowed through the crowd for his turn. “Bonjour, Paul,” I said sweetly I handed him his fishing pole – just as the hook of an overexcited four-year-old caught on the hem of my dress.

The eyebrows of Paul’s papa shot up so far on his forehead that they almost went into orbit as he was treated to a full-frontal of my see-through fuschia lace bikini.

I told you that I dressed for the occasion.

It’s the French twist on your mother’s insistence on clean underwear:

Always wear pretty panties – you never know who’s going to see them.

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