Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Perfect perspective

(Copyright - Angry Birds/Rio Mobile)

Life is usually just a matter of perspective.

But things really start going downhill when the 6-year-old boy and the parent have two totally different views of the same situation.

All bets are off, and it’s quite possible someone’s head will explode.


It was a massacre, and only the dog was happy about it.

I heard the shouting from three rooms away and immediately ran to assess the situation. I skidded to a stop in the kitchen, where my eyes spotted the fuzzy back end of a golden retriever sticking out from beneath the table.

Scattered about her paws and among the table legs was a feast consisting of no fewer then 537 cheesy-flavored potato chips.

Yes, exactly that many. I’m like Rain Man when it comes to spills.

If only I could use that power for good - like winning the lottery.

Meanwhile, our son sat forlornly on his chair, forgotten peanut butter sandwich clutched in his little fist, an empty chip canister teetered on the edge of the table and big crocodile tears spilled down his face.

My husband’s tirade continued, “WHAT ARE YOU DOING WASTING FOOD?!?” He quickly ran to the counter and began unrolling half a tube of paper towels.

Seriously. Half a tube. You know what paper towels cost these days? That’s - like - $4 he’s ripping off there.

One would think our son had spilled the Exxon Valdez equivalent in milk rather than a few dry potato chips. Gimme a break. Besides, the dog had everything under control.

I walked over to the little guy, patted him on the back and soothingly said, “It’s OK. Accidents happen.”
I looked over my shoulder, glared at my husband and added, “And it’s not ‘wasting food’ when you spill something, Mr. Never Spilled Anything In His Life.”

Mr. Never Spilled Anything In His Life glared back and immediately popped open his mouth to reply.

I quickly held up my hand - the universal sign for Stuff it. Considering I used my entire hand and not just one explanatory finger showed great restraint on my part.

I’m practically a saint.

He shut his mouth, looked at our son and muttered something to the effect of “sorry.” Or maybe it was “Studebaker.” Kinda hard to tell as the wall of shame had descended and he was hiding behind a big wad of paper towels at the time.

Ah, perspective - life’s big equalizer. Ain’t it grand?


“When can I get a phone?”

The words, uttered from the back seat of the car, were completely out of the blue.

I turned and looked at the dog sitting behind me. “Did you just ask for a phone?” I asked in mock surprise. She cocked her head and flopped her tongue out of the side of her mouth in the way that makes it appear her IQ drops about 50 points. What a cutie!

I looked at my husband in the driver’s seat and excitedly said, “Honey, the dog can talk! We are soooooo gonna be rich!”

Our son, who apparently has yet to understand the subtle nuances of sarcasm, piped up, “No, Mom! That was me!”

I looked over my shoulder and answered, “Well, that’s just silly. You’re 6. Makes more sense for the dog to have a phone. In doggy years, she’s like 20.”

He looked at the dog sitting next to him and shot laser beams from his eyes, “That’s not fair.”

I snorted. A 6 year old. Wanting a phone.

He’d have better luck getting his hands on a nuclear warhead or one of the retired space shuttles.

It pays to dream big.

I shrugged, “You can have a phone when you get a job and pay for it.”

His jaw dropped at the injustice of it all. “But how will I play Angry Birds?”

Oh. This wasn’t about calling his buddies or texting 436 times a day. It was the phone-based video game that was crack for kids that had tripped his Gimme Trigger.

But before I could open my mouth to dash his fragile hopes even further, my husband piped up, “Oh, that’s a cool game!” I looked at him in stunned silence as he added, “I’m on level 23.”


Everyone has one. But why is mine the only one that’s perfect?

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