5pm, Friday playing the home version of What’s That: this time What’s That Sticky Spot on the Floor. A Friday already full of bizarrely frustrating events that seem innocuous when examined separately, but when grouped together? Parenting laughter– the knee-hugging, rocking back and forth in padded room kind.
Parenting. Spending more time exploring Life’s Really Important Questions, such as “What’s That Smell” and “What Made This Sticky Spot”
JB leans in and sniffs, categorizes it as Not-Poo, and prepares for clean up.
Interjecting, I take a sniff with my never-recovered-from-pregnancy-sensitive-nose. Smells petroleum-y, like floor wax.
I touch; it’s both sticky and slimy-greasy.
As both JB and I stare, Elliot enters stage left: “mommy, do you remember when you ate nonie’s necklace?”
I Head-whip, with wide eyes and a shrill voice: “What did you just say?”
Perhaps a brief history? In 1980, two people parented what would now be considered a spirited Small Person (me) at a military base in Weisbaden, Germany. At the time, they also happened to be packing up our quarters (apartment) to move back to the US. As the story goes, my Mom asked me throw an old necklace in the trash and instead I stashed it in my Monchhichi tree house. Later I ate some part of the necklace, which would be a non-event, except that the beads were made from castor beans, aka ricin.
Coincidentally, I know firsthand what it tastes/feels like to have the stomach pumped. It’s always nice when a moment with your child leads you to reminisce about your own childhood, right?
In the end, the final story is that Elliot wanted to clean up some snot (on the floor? how? nevermind) and got the cleaner from the kitchen.
We store the cleaner well out of reach–for this very reason. I remained suspicious, and asked him to show me.
Notice I annotated a picture rather than capturing him in the moment. Mostly because capturing it would be suggesting approval. Oh, and because I was standing there completely dumbfounded.
He’s determined, I’ll give him that.
Now the petroleum-y smell has reason. The produce wash exists to remove that waxy coating from fruits and vegetables.
And hardwood floors.