Thursday, March 26, 2009

I think it's an exploding raccoon

It was a scene straight from a Quentin Tarantino horror film.

Rust-colored splotches and chunks of something that may or may not have been alive at one time were splattered against the entire surface.

Hands down, grossest thing I’d ever seen.

And I once witnessed our golden retriever upchuck a bird.

“What blew up in the microwave?” I asked my husband as he walked by where I stood holding the open microwave door.

He stopped behind me, peered over my shoulder and shuddered. “Hard to tell,” he answered, shaking his head sadly. “Hard to tell.”

I snorted. I knew full well that I hadn’t put what could have only been an exploding raccoon – covered in barbecue sauce – into the microwave.

And unless our 2-year-old son or sweet-but-stupid golden retriever had learned to use household appliances when I wasn’t looking, the lone suspect was the guy standing in front of me wearing a Who Me? expression on his face.

“Where’s the phone book?” I asked, slamming the microwave door shut with a snap.

“Why?” my husband asked, watching as I opened the phone book to the yellow pages and ran my finger down the section titled “Churches.”

“So I can call a priest,” I answered.

“What for?” he asked.

“Do you know anyone else who can perform an exorcism?” I replied.

***

A woman hasn’t truly lived until she’s been pampered at an all-service spa, made out with Brad Pitt and combed peanut butter out of a toddler’s hair.

Unfortunately, I’ve only been able to do the latter.

“Ah, geesh,” I groaned, “How on earth did you DO this?”

The “you” in question was currently sitting quietly on my lap, entranced by the off-key singing of Elmo on the television and paying absolutely no attention to the woman who had triumphed through 24 hours of labor to bring him into this beautiful world.

A woman who – at that very moment – was silently contemplating how to take him out of it.

I grimaced and carefully picked at a large section of white blonde locks that was stuck to the back of his head. Courtesy of what looked like half a jar of creamy, gooey peanut butter.

The only one in the house excited about the incident was the dog perched next to the sofa, dripping drool onto my feet, anxiously waiting for me to push my son’s head down to her level so she could get a good lick in.

For one second, I thought about letting her do it.

OK. I actually thought about it for two seconds.

You got me. I was in mid-shove when my husband yelled out, “Hey! What the heck are you doing?!”

Rats. Foiled again, I thought, and slowly sat my son up straight again. His eyes had never left the image of the dancing red puppet on the television screen. He had no clue that his head had been thisclose to becoming a dog treat.

“How did he get the peanut butter outta the fridge in the first place?” I asked my husband. “Did you make him a sandwich or something?”

“Nope,” my husband quipped, holding back a laugh. “Just be thankful he didn’t find the grape jelly too.”

***

Our golden retriever could find a mud puddle in the middle of the desert.

“It hasn’t rained for a week but you found mud somewhere, didn’t you?” I said as I threw her into the bathtub one day.

OK. She tips the scales at 94 solid pounds. I didn’t throw her so much as I reached down, grabbed her around the middle, tugged upward and blew out one of my kidneys.

She, however, didn’t budge a toenail.

Doubled over from the blinding pain in my back, I threw a dog treat into the tub, and she jumped right in after it.

Stupid dog.

Not that I’m so bright. If I had done that in the first place, I’d still have all my organs in proper working order.

“I see the dog had some fun,” my husband said, poking his head through the bathroom door. “There are doggy footprints all over the house.”

“Yep,” I answered and turned on the water, seized the shower head and hit the dog full blast in the rear end. “I bet she was chasing the raccoon.”

(originally published May 29, 2007)

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