Minimalism and The Man who Throws Nothing

Sometimes I lose my mind and think that a book on cleaning, clearing, and minimalism will change my world, inside and out.  Declutter, throw away, recycle.  It all sounds so good.  And I am good at it.  I do end up collecting again, but for a few moments it’s like an empty dishwasher in a family of seven.

Then the husband walks in as I’m cleaning out the CORDS box.  The zebra print shoebox that has been living in my closet for 3 and 1/2 years, overflowing onto the floor and a mishmash of tangled whatevers.

There are a dozen cords I can’t identify, that haven’t moved since I last did.  I make a nice neat pile of these to throw.  There’s an antenna to something.  I make the mistake of asking him what it is.  He grabs it from me with excitement in his eyes.

“It’s an antenna!” he proclaims as if he had just dug up T-rex bones in the yard.  Yeah, I know it’s a damn antenna.  I want to know to what.

I think I can use this,” he says as he walk over to the modem on the top of the television and attempts to attach it, even though the modem already has its own antenna and is a different color.  The antenna in his hand is shiny aluminum and green.  The modem is black.  “It doesn’t go to this,” he concludes.

Ah, but this isn’t the end of the disruption of my cleaning agenda.  He walks over and grabs a mac cord and says “I could take this and splice it to something . . .”  

I can just imagine what would be spliced to this, as an unnecessary fire hazard that he thinks is the coolest thing EVER.

THROW IT.

Then he turns back to the pile of cords, with desire in his eyes.  This is just a box of old cords.  Imagine what happened next when I asked him about the 70’s flowered ironing board in the basement that he picked up beside the road 3 years ago and hasn’t used since.

 

 

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At the TRACK, social anxiety and exercise

I should make a TRACK category.  Like Adventures on the Track, Things That Make Me Want to Run (Away), or Save me From Small Children.

I’ve noticed lately that an elderly man in his 70’s comes to the high school track just before 9 a.m. I’m usually about done walking by then and when he sees me coming to my car he hides behind his large truck until I get in and leave.  I don’t know why.  I’m not scary.

But 70 small children swarming onto the track are!  I was half way around the track, enjoying the cool weather and quiet when the herd of children showed up out of nowhere and flooded the track.  The old man was there early today.  Probably trying to avoid me.  I was walking behind him when the small children took over.  Half the group went one way, half the other, some were racing each other.  Small groups spread out walking side by side and covered all the lanes.  Some were even walking back and forth across all the lanes as they went around the whole track.

RUN!

That’s what my brain said.  But the old man kept walking in the outside lane as though nothing was happening.  I soon passed him and decided that I had every right to be on the track.  Children didn’t move out of the way as I passed them or met them coming the other way.  I refused to move either so they had to dodge me at the last minute or run into me.  If the old man could do it, so could I!

But wait, why does he hide from me when he’s perfectly okay surrounded by crazy children?

Weirdness at the Track

It’s rare that I’m confused by people’s behavior.  I have no idea what was going on at the track this morning.  I was just taking a before work walk in circles as I sometimes do.  Then this older woman with white hair and strangely athletic legs shows up in her tight work out outfit and starts doing HUGE WEIRD stretches in the middle of the lanes.  She makes LOUD sounds for emphasis that I could hear over the music on my headphones.  Then she started practicing her sprints by doing this strange take off in slow motion again and again.  She said hello to me and I nodded back.  She did two short sprints past me, went to her car for water, stood in the middle of the track, took her water back, and made a show of getting ready to do a high jump by the mats.  She moved the poles with great big movements and found a rope she was winding around one of them.  I left at this point because it felt like she wanted me to notice and I was feeling creeped out.  It was like watching an older woman do an SNL skit on being a famous track start who is also trying to pick up women who walk.

My BOYS will not be potty trained ever.

I have come to accept that I will spend the rest of my life cleaning up bodily fluids.

The 5 year old is so obsessed with not having a red butt from wiping poorly that every time he poops he comes out of the bathroom and finds someone to bend over in front of so they can examine his ******* to see if there’s any poop on it.  Strangers, dogs, his own Grandpa.

The 3 1/2 year old has spent this week peeing wherever he happens to be standing.  This might be okay on the lawn sometimes, but then he continued to do this in the house.  He pulled down his underwear and peed on the doormat.  He peed in the kitchen.  He peed on a blanket he had put on the floor while I was in the bathroom.  He stood in the bathtub and peed on the floor when he was taking a bath.  He just loves to see what he can pee on.

Then this morning he made it to the toilet and  I thought we were all good, until he came out complaining that he had peed on his shirt and pants.  I stripped him down and went to find a washcloth to wipe him off with so that he wouldn’t stink in this 80 degree 95 percent humidity.  He squatted down to pick up a car and pooped on the floor.  It looked like a giant Hershey’s kiss.

My husband has mentioned with an eager look on his face that he wants to stay home with the boys.  I’ll bet he would freak out if he saw a giant poop kiss on the floor, a naked baby, and random puddles of pee everywhere.  Does he realize staying home means a load of laundry a day just to keep the house from smelling like boy pee?  No, he sees himself playing Mario and doing “projects.”  This is why he has to work and I handle my own job and kiss poops when I am “not working.”

Fun with Children

Haley
Can you bring me an envelope tomorrow so I can mail my check
The kids can’t come their mom changed her mind
Kristi
Are you still coming?
Haley Zola
Haley
Yes.
That’s why I asked you to bring me an envelope tomorrow
Kristi
What envelope?
Haley Zola
Haley
Kristi
What the hell is that conversation? That was not me.
Haley Zola
Haley
What?
Kristi
I’m so confused.
Haley Zola
Haley
I asked you to bring me an envelope?
Kristi
Are you coming tomorrow?
Haley Zola
Haley
Yes
Are you high?
Kristi
I don’t think so.
Are you?
Haley Zola
Haley
I’m the logical one in this conversation
Kristi
Snort. The only logical part of your conversation is your period.
Am I picking you up in the morning with the kids?
Haley Zola
Haley
Kristi
I thought that was yesterday.
Are they coming tomorrow?
I don’t know why you have to be so unclear.
Haley Zola
Haley
I’m being clear! No they cannot come their mom changed her mind. Yes I am going with you tomorrow and when you come to pick me up to go to Boston will you kindly bring me an envelope for my rent check.
Kristi
Ok, so we’ll pick up an envelope in Boston and drop her kids off at your house.
Haley Zola
Haley
I hate you.
Kristi
No, wait. So we’ll mail you in an envelope to the Aquarium so the kids can pick you up.
Haley Zola
Haley
I’m done with this conversation, I just woke up and it’s too much
Kristi
So you’ll be here at 6:30 then?
With the envelope?
Haley Zola
Haley
I’ll be just barely getting home from work at 630

Seen by Haley Zola at 8:54pm

Kristi
Ok, we’ll be waiting for the rent check at 5.

Do you want a used envelope or a new one?

————————–
And then she left me.

The Crowbar Incident. 

Yesterday morning my husband carried a crowbar into the kitchen and proceeded to tell me how to use it to take nails out of boards. 

You slide this end under the nail and pull back this way . . .”

I gave him that look I give people when they say something to me that I don’t understand (something so stupid that I have no idea why these words are coming out of their mouth).  I don’t mean to make a face. After 5 kids it comes naturally. And is why I have a deep groove between my eyes.

“Why are you showing me how to use a crowbar?”  I finally find polite words. 

It’s not a crowbar. It’s a flat bar” he says as though that explains why he’s giving me the Nail Pulling For Dummies talk. 

“You called it a “Wrecker” last week and it’s still a crowbar. And I know how to use one. Do you remember  that I told you last night that the boys and I spent an hour taking nails out of the old deck boards?  Did I show you the pile after you said you didn’t see it when you walked right by it?  Why are you showing ME how to use a crowbar?”

At which point he walked away. 

But seriously, does he think I pulled nails with my teeth?

How to kill a tick: Plunger Effect

There was a tick on the dog and I had Nick pull it out while I sat on the dog.  So far so good, right?  Then he brought it over to the kitchen light and examined it closely to see if the head was still attached.  What happened next is beyond my ability to comprehend.

He took it down to the basement.  Beat it to nothing.  Started a fire even though it was 75 in the house.  Put it in the fire to cremate it.  Filled the house with smoke.  And burned sweetgrass to get rid of the smell of a burning tiny bug.

If this is what he does with every tick we find this summer then we are in for a hot smoky time in my house.