Sunday, December 30, 2012

What Would Colin Powell Do? (Fisheyes and etc)

Early Sunday morning Zack wakes me up this morning standing over me with a bright smile - "We're hungry, please can you make breakfast?"

He has a friend sleeping over, it's after 8, so yes, I get up quickly and happily and start making bacon and pancakes and coffee.

While I'm doing all this my son come up and hugs me and asks where his iPad is.

 I give him a one arm hug and shrug him off and pour a pancake on my pan as he walks away.

My dad taught me to watch for fish eyes popping up in the pancake batter as it cooks.

After a few seconds one appears as a bubble.

Then another, then a group of them.

 Fish eyes, time to flip the pancake. There, it's just brown enough, just perfect.

 I finish it and take the pan off the stove so I can look for that iPad.

Is it on Zack's desk? (no) Is it on Zoe's bed? (yes).

I pick it up and hand it to my son who is bunkered down on the big sofa with his friend, both playing minecraft.  One of them, I'm not sure who, mutters thanks, and I go off back to the kitchen and bacon and fisheyes.

After filling their plates with pancakes and bacon, I carry butter, syrup, cups and orange juice to the table I announce in my most "don't embarrass me Moooommmm!" voice,  "Hey hungry boys who woke me up to cook for them! Breakfast is ready!"

They say nothing.

I'm up and getting things done so I keep moving and decide to gather a load of laundry.

I used to toss my laundry in my huge bathtub (the one with hot bubbling jets that I use a lot less in reality than I do in my imagination) but I stopped that on Thanksgiving day after I came back from a fantastic workout running up and down  the hill near my house.  I was hot and sweaty and  decided to take a pre-Holiday Madness long hot bath.

This meant clearing about 6 big towels out of the tub, so while turning on the right songs on Pandora I mindlessly reached in and pulled a few towels out with one hand.

 I dropped them  on the floor (note to self, get bathmats for Christmas; Zoe puked on all the old ones) and reached in to pull out more towels.

As I'm tossing these towels on the ground I realize there is something in my hand that is not a towel and I drop it right back into the bathtub.

It looks kinda familiar, like a toy Zack would make with Legos, all spindly but collapsed into itself like the skeleton of  umbrella folded down. Sometimes Zack takes baths in this huge tub, floating and playing and just being a boy.  Yes, it  must be one of Zack's toys of course, so I reach down and start to pick it up out of the bathtub but then it moves so I don't touch it at all.

One leg straights out.

Then another.

 It's a spider. It's a big black skinny spider bigger than my palm and I don't know what to do so I keep extra quiet and still.

This is a mortal and moral dilemma. I just ran up and down hills under the stars, embracing life. I can't just kill something now.

I ask myself what Colin Powell would do.

 I know. I know. He kicked Saddam out of Kuwait in Desert Storm.

Limited objective, success.

I decide the spider must go down the drain and try to find something to chase it down with (or poison it -- now that I named it Saddam Hussein I'm thinking of using my WMD on it).

The bathroom offers a variety spider chasing (killing?) tools - hairspray, sharp heeled shoes, magazines -- but my heart is set on spraying some cleanser with bleach at this spider and also sanitizing the bathtub.  Under the cabinet, where the bleach spray belongs, I only find two things - toilet paper and tooth whitening mouthwash.

So I pour a capful of mouthwash and pour it at Saddam Hussein the spider in my bathtub.  He shakes one arm at the wetness (or was it a leg?) and moves a little. I pour more,  he moves a little more deliberately away from the dental WMD.

The cap is empty. I grab the bottle and pour it towards the spider and chase him towards the drain.

As it slips into the hole, I forget the Powell Doctrine go a little more Bush (Cheney?) Doctrine and smash the drain on the spider, leaving half his legs (arms?) dangling on the outside of the drain.

Maybe he lived, maybe he died. Either way, I cleaned the bathtub and had a long hot bath that morning.

Now that I've gathered laundry (which I no longer keep in my tub) and started a big load of school clothes for next week I notice something.

The boys haven't touched the food.

They aren't even at the table yet.

I repeat myself.  "Hello? Boys? Breakfast?"

Zack says "Later, we're not hungry!"

I come closer to him, because I'm sure I didn't hear him right, and you know maybe all that loud music in my youth and in my car is catching up to me.

He repeats himself, "We're really not hungry yet, mom, but it smells good."

I kiss him on the forehead. "So basically you woke me up to find the iPad?"

He nods and adds, "I knew better than to wake you up just for that."

 I kiss him again and go eat his bacon.