Seven Hot Takes

1.  Today, I offered cash to my 13-year-old daughter if she would please, please let me braid up her long, thick, wavy mane of hair, which she has been wearing down  (or even down and topped with a knit cap!) all summer.  When she heard the dollar amount, she looked startled, and then offered to let me do it for free.  Therein beats a human heart after all!

2.  The kids have been staying cool by eating ice cubes,wearing as few clothes as they can get away with, according to their station in life; and lying on their necks, gaping vacantly at reruns of Star Trek.  Star Trek is already nearly unwatchable to me, but the sight of those skin-tight polyester turtlenecks makes me want to put a pickaxe through the TV screen.

3.  When it’s very hot, the sticky, crumby, chaotic, sloppy piles of random belongings that we call a home, and which I normally find extremely tolerable and ignorable, make me INSANE.  And so, on the very days when I know I ought to be putting my feet up and drinking lots of fluids and conserving physical and emotional energy, I find myself scrambling around cleaning inside cabinets, under the oven, and around the dials on the washing machine.  This does not help.  But I can’t help it.

4.  You may recall that our house has a hose problem.  We now have a way of hooking up the hose, but I think our well tank was designed for an older, simpler time, when people were made out of paper, and didn’t consider large quantities of water something to be grasped at.

Being a mature and responsible homeowner, I have responded to the problem by deciding I really don’t care when we run out of water.

What happens is I let the kids use the hose, and I sit down to check out Facebook.  Eventually I try to do dishes or something, and discover that the water has run out.  I say, “Dammit,” and go back and check Facebook for a while.  The kids run in and out of the house as they play in the muddy grass, and I greet them with a motherly, “AGH, no hugs, get away from me, you’re all wet!  Get out, get out!  Look what you’re doing to the floor!”  (I’m pretty sure they know this means, “I love you.”)  Then I tell the kids it’s too hot to cook lunch, and they eat mustard and fig newtons or something, I don’t care.  Then I try to do the dishes again, and discover again that we’re out of water.

Then I check Facebook again, and get a “hey, how’s it going, boy it’s hot, what are you wearing” email from my husband.  Hearing from him reminds me that he’s not actually as fine as I am with not having water, and that I better go fix it before he gets home.  So I say “dammit” again, go into the basement, and push on the scummy little lever until it finds just the right spot, and water starts running again.  Then I go check Facebook.

5.  We also have a cup problem.  I shall demonstrate why with the following dialogue I just had with my seven-year-old son:

Son:  Can I make lemonade?

Me:  Uggggg, no.  Uggggg, yes.  I guess so, okay, fine, all right, yes.  Just don’t make a mess with the sugar, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Son:  Dang!  Never mind.  I forgot, all the cups are dirty.

Me:  WELL, you could WASH one!

Son:  Nah, I’ll just wait until the dirty ones get washed.

Me:  YOU KNOW WHAT!   THE REASON WE DON’T HAVE ANY CUPS IS THAT YOU LEAVE THEM LYING AROUND!  THEY DON’T JUST MAGICALLY MAKE THEIR WAY BACK TO THE SINK AND WASH THEMSELVES, YOU KNOW!  SO YOU GO OUTSIDE RIGHT NOW AND YOU GO FIND SOME OF THOSE CUPS YOU LEAVE LYING AROUND IN THE GRASS, JUST HOPING THEY’LL MAGICALLY MAKE THEIR WAY BACK TO THE SINK AND WASH THEMSELVES!  YOU GO DO THAT NOW!

Son:  That’s okay, I’ll just make lemonade later, when there are more cups.

6.  The other day, while my husband and the older kids were out seeing Harry Potter and the Curse of the Humiliating Controversy, I thought the little ones and I would replicate one of my fondest childhood memories:  making giant bubbles.  I actually bought straws, string, and extra dish detergent ahead of time, so it would be a smooth, successful project, and we would All Have Fun.

Well, it didn’t work.  Of course.  I couldn’t get the proportions of soap and water right (how is that even possible?  This is NOT HARD!), and  — I don’t know, maybe it was the wrong kind of string or something.  We eventually made maybe half a dozen respectably large bubbles, but there was an awful lot more of this

and this

than there was of bubbles.  Some of us, however, managed to have fun anyway:

7.  And then of course when there is hot weather, there is plenty of beach, and silly bathing beauties

which makes it all worthwhile.

Don’t forget to check out Conversion Diary for all the other Seven Quick Takes.

Oh, and my post today at the Register, “Safe Playgrounds and Safe Sex” may or may not generate some heat of its own — you never know.

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