Monday, June 1, 2009

Are You Drunk, Tom?

The phone rang right as I was in the middle of washing Natalie’s hair.

This meant that she was screaming at the top of her lungs. Natalie hates having her hair washed. I’ve tried several tactics to make the event more appealing but nothing works.

One time I started singing as I poured the water on top of Natalie’s head. My thinking was that she’d be so enthralled with the song that she’d forget that I was lathering her hair up. It seemed to work at first. I started pouring the water on her head and I was singing Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star and Natalie was grinning up at me—probably inwardly mocking the fact that I can’t carry a tune. But still, the point is, she wasn’t crying and busting my eardrum so I was thrilled.

But then it seemed to hit Natalie what was going on. I saw her eyes bug out in recognition.

My’s wet....I don’t like my hair to be wet. Why is my hair wet? I don’t care if my hair smells like a foot. I don’t like this!

And so, Natalie screamed as I was bellowing, “Like a diamond in the sky!”

Natalie was all, “WAHHHHHHHHH!”

And I was all, “TWINKLE, TWINKLE LITTLE STAR!” trying to get her mind off the hair washing.

Needless to say, it didn’t go over well.

The next time I washed her hair I tried speaking to her matter-of-factly. I think the experts are always saying that it’s best to inform your kid what’s about to happen in a no-nonsense voice. So I said firmly, “Natalie, I’m going to wash your hair now. I understand that you don’t like it but you don’t want to be known as the toddler with the rank smelling hair, do you?”

Natalie stared at me as though I were a complete idiot.

“So....” I continued, unsure of what her blank stare meant. “I’m going to wash your hair now. I’ll go quickly and it’ll be painless.” I grabbed the tiny container and filled it with water and slowly dumped it on her head.

“FOR THE LOVE OF CHRIST, WOMAN!” Natalie shrieked.

Well, not really. She really just screamed but she might as well have said that.

I tried the bribing.

“Natalie, if you let me wash your hair without making my ears ring in pain I’ll give you chocolate!”

She didn’t fall for that.

So I’ve basically just given up and come to the conclusion that ear plugs are the way to go when it’s hair washing day. I keep a pair by the bath and they help dull the pain.

So anyhow, as I was saying, the phone rang. I always keep the phone beside me. I took out my earplugs and when I answered I heard my husband Tom’s muffled voice on the other end.

He was all, “HELLLLOOOOO!”

Right away, I knew something was up. For starters, Tom never goes “HELLLOOOO.” He’s just not a peppy person. He usually grunts out a greeting.

“Hi,” I replied suspiciously over Natalie’s crying.

“What’s that noise? It sounds like an angry possum,” Tom said.

Excuse me? A what? An angry possum? Since when do possums scream like that? And when has Tom ever been around a possum?

Something was up.

“Tom,” I said. “Are you drunk?”

Tom started to giggle. You have to understand, my husband doesn’t giggle. He laughs. He chuckles. But he only giggles when he’s drunk. He sort of makes this high pitched “he he he” sound.

“I’m not drunk. I just had a few beers. But no, to answer your question, I am not drunk,” Tom gushed. Which basically means that he IS drunk because Tom doesn’t gush either.

I managed to quickly wash Natalie’s hair as I cradled the phone against my ear. This was not easy. Washing Natalie’s hair reminds me of what it’s like to wash a cat. Only instead of using claws on me she uses her teeth. So there I was trying to keep the phone to my ear while Natalie thrashed and tried to bite and all along Tom started shouting to someone that he could really go for some sweet and sour chicken.

“Dude! DUDE! We need some sweet and sour chicken!” Tom was yelling.

I was instantly insulted. I’ve been wanting sweet and sour chicken for months now. We used to have a Chinese food place that delivered but they had to shut down due to the economy. Yes, I nearly cried when I phoned them up to place an order and the message that clicked on told me that they had closed.

“My been lomein!” I had screeched. “Noooooo!”

“You’re having sweet and sour chicken?” I casually asked Tom as I scooped Natalie out from the bath. She was so busy throwing a fit that I don’t think she realized I had finished washing her hair. So she was still flailing her limbs all over the place and her foot kicked me right in the gut.

“Yeah. We’re starved,” Tom told me seriously.

I’m starved! And I’ve just been kicked in the gut rather fiercely by a two-year-old! Suppose I get internal bleeding?

“I hope you enjoy your Chinese food. Natalie, for goodness sakes, I’m DONE washing your hair. You can calm down now,” I said and Natalie suddenly ceased in her fit and gave me a grin as though she hadn’t just completely freaked out on me.

She is SUCH a girl.

“I will enjoy my Chinese food,” Tom said, not catching my sarcastic tone.

I got Natalie dressed and carried her downstairs as Tom prattled in my ear about the new dog he had gotten to train with.

(He’s currently on TDY at military dog training school.)

“His name is Racks,” Tom said as I sat Natalie down on the couch.

“Rex?” I replied.

RACKS!” Tom repeated.

“REX?” Surely a person wouldn’t name a dog Racks. I mean, were THEY drunk when they named the dog? What kind of name is Racks?

“RACKS! R-A-C-K-S!” Tom practically screamed. Then he giggled again.

I was losing my patience quickly. It must be nice to sit around with people who don’t try to bite you.

I switched on Blue’s Clues for Natalie so I could talk in peace. Natalie was insulted because Steve was the host and she wanted Joe.

“JOE! JOOEEEE!” she bellowed, pointing wildly at the TV in anger.

“WHO is Joe?” Tom demanded, instantly sounding all suspicious.

Oh for---seriously? Does he honestly think a man would step foot into this house of insanity? I mean, I have a daughter who bites and I have a son with ADHD who has a fascination with the human body and enjoys telling people that their food is churned up in their stomach and goes through their intestines and oh, here’s the best part, then you POOP it out.

I’ve explained to Tommy that that’s the sort of thing that people like to forget but he doesn’t seem to comprehend this.

“Joe. From Blue’s Clues,” I assured Tom.

“How do I know?” Tom wondered in a wary tone. Ever since he made friends with a guy whose wife cheated on him, Tom assumes that I’m going to do the same. But again. What man would set foot into this house? Plus, I have something called a conscience and I giggle when I tell a lie.

“Would you just TRUST me, Tom? I trust you,” I reminded him. Probably because I know he could never cheat on me either. Plus, I don’t think any other women would put up with his picky eating, the fact that he doesn’t understand what a laundry basket is used for and his empty soda cans that he litters all over the house. It’s like, Tom, dude, you know that black container in the kitchen? It’s not for decoration. It’s called a trash can and, here’s a shocking concept, we put our TRASH in it.

“I trust you,” Tom finally said though I’m not sure how serious he was.

We hung up a few minutes later. He went off to enjoy his sweet and sour chicken and I went off to enjoy watching Steve from Blue’s Clues practically leap out of his pants over the excitement of vegetables.

I think I need to get out more.


  1. I'll let you come over and wash my hair!

  2. Besides....Joe is not even that cute.

    Now, Steve? Oh how I lusted after Steve...

  3. Oh my gosh! What is with them and leaving soda cans all over the place? Here's another concept, after you use a dish, and if there are no other dishes in the sink, WASH IT!!! I really needed a laugh today and you're blog hit the spot. :)

  4. Yeah, I'm not a Joe person either. Steve, now that's another pot of beans entirely.

  5. Oh, how I hate that! Sometimes Curtis will call me from work and he'll be like, "We're having a barbecue," or a fish fry or something similar. And it's inevitably on a day when I would give my two front teeth for an hour of downtime - especially with other adults! Ugh!

    BTW, Colin loves to explain to people about how food turns into poop, too. Why is it that they pick that up so easily, yet can't seem to understand social appropriateness? :)

  6. Oh totally don't have you hands full, do you?

    Izzy just freaks out and flails her arms's so much fun.

  7. I hear you...let's get out and find a new Chinese place.

    Too funny about the hair washing...well, it's only funny because I go through the same thing with my kids...yes, 2 of them!

  8. if it's any consolation, when i give baths there are no less than 2kids screaming, sometimes up to 4. that's fun. also, i don't blame natalie. i like joe way better than steve, too. and as for tom...really, if you had free time, would you use it to hook up or to sleep/read a book/watch tv peacefully alone? come on, now!

  9. I dont care for Joe either...since I "have" to watch it I would prefer Steve.

  10. I know nothing about Joe versus Steve, but I do know that show annoys the caca out of me. Seriously. It makes the hair on my neck stick out straight.

    BTW, congrats on your win! :)

  11. What's old Steve up to these days, anyway?...

    You are the writer I wanna be when I grow up...

  12. now that is so not fair. he gets drunk and has Chinese food. Wrong, just wrong I tell you!

  13. I absolutely love the incredibly inventive curses you come up with for Natalie...they have me laughing like crazy. I also thought of the ear plugs immediately. Now I'm scared cos we think alike....

  14. Have you read my post about bathing a cat? They may be some pointers in there for you! LOL

  15. Wow, you must have like 10 arms! If that were me, the phone would've dropped in the tub for sure.

  16. LOL...I felt as though I was sitting on the toilet next to the tub witnessing all this! Great writing! My hubby just gave our 2.5year old a bath for the FIRST time EVER last week! It's exhausting! Found you on SITS...wanted to say hello! :o)

  17. I had to get in the tub with my oldest for several years. It was like trying to get a cat washed!!! Crazy.

    I feel your pain :-)

  18. Steve from Blue's Clues kinda scares me:O

  19. OMG you need a drink and some sweet and sour chicken!

  20. You can come here we have like 5 chinesse places!

  21. You seriously need to write a sitcom or something!

    For the record, I hated Joe and preferred Steve.

  22. OMG, you are hilarious! I could totally picture that scene going on in our house as well.

    Also, have to agree with Jenni, Steve was a need to work on your daughters taste in Blues Clues hosts. :)

  23. Any chance she'll get used to it this summer if she goes in a pool?We have an outdoor shower (since we live near a beach) and showering after going swimming seemed much more exciting. And then they got into the smell of nauseatingly sweet shampoos (which don't smell that much better than a foot, but at least you know the hair is clean) Or perhaps just hose down her head in the driveway. For the love of Christ, woman :)

  24. when i wash my hair i scream like a angry keep the cat awake!.....i love love love sweet and sour chicken....i would move if my local chinese food place closed....

  25. That's so freaking funny!

    What if you wash her hair in the sink? Or with the hose outside?

    It's obvious I don't have children.

  26. I'm trying to stop chuckling here so I can write this.

    Ok, for Natalie try this: a doll that looks like her (long blonde hair) that she can take in the tub. Tell her she washes the dolls hair while you wash hers. It worked for my daughter who was one of those claw shrieking maniacs with hair washing.

    I find it amazing how quickly guys assume someone is honing in on their territory. I've been without a shower, in old torn jeans and an over sized stretched out t-shirt with the days cleaning debris spilled down the front of me. My hair is pulled up in a mishap of dirty hanging get the picture (I would hate to see who would be attracted to that) and Paul will ask who stopped by the house that day..."Are you serious?"

    The thing is he's a lead guitarist that is gone most weekends, holidays and whatever free time he has with his band playing gigs...and I'm the one he's worried about. It's hilarious. Meanwhile I suppose the wet dog who just had a bath and the clean house got that way all by themselves. (Hugs)Indigo

  27. Steve started some rockband now. Wait or is it Joe. (Scratching head).

    I can't keep all the kid shows characters straight.

  28. I've gotta be honest...although I was never much of a Blue's Clues fan (the over-the-top earnestness can really get to you in a short matter of time), I thought Steve was infinitely more interesting than Joe. Bland as Steve was, that's really sayin' something about poor Joe.

  29. wish you lived in vegas, we'd go out for some sweet and sour chicken, and lomein and mongolian beef and cream cheese wontons. dang now im hungry... freakin TOM!

  30. OMG! We are married to the same man! And oddly enough they have the same name and are both in the military, LOL! Literally I read the title outloud and he wanted to know who was asking about him... then went on to say that if they knew him then they would know he was drunk. *sigh* Yes, VERY picky eater, he turns his nose up at anything he's never had before. Laundry basket (he tried to argue with me on this one but the pile of clothes on his side of the bed is proof) "That's just where they land," he says. AND THE CANS! He leaves them on the counter which is 4 ft from the trash can!?! But I guess they are atleast on the counter. LOL! Love it, I feel your pain girl. Screaming 2 year old during hair washing and all :)


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