Saturday, March 7, 2009

The Genius And The Vacuum

Life with boys is never boring. Life with girls is never boring either but there are some things boys do that girls just wouldn't. The picture of Vu vacuuming his hair reminded me of THE vacuum story.

Joe was an amazing kid. Joe was an awesome big brother. Joe was not an amazing babysitter. Actually, he WAS amazing to those he babysat.

I knew Joe made all kinds of milkshake and juice concoctions when he babysat--there seemed to be "sticky" all over the house for days.

I knew Joe would pay the lowest bidder (ie Lizzy) to change any and all poopy diapers.

What I didn't know (for several years) was that when Joe babysat his younger siblings he would take the twin mattresses off the beds and line them up down the stairs--then let the kids have an indoor slip-n-slide fest. Stuffed animals and pillows were bumpers where the stairs take a right angle.

Scary, huh? Somehow, they all survived. I guess he took my words to heart because whenever I left him in charge I would look at him, smile confidently and say, "Just make sure everyone is still alive when I get home." They were. No wonder they always had such big smiles on their faces.

Luckily, it was a rare occasion when Joe babysat for other families. All our neighbors probably heard so much commotion from our house they knew better, but our friends M. and D. live several blocks away. Apparently, far enough away. Their son, Michael, was one of Will's best friends so one night Joe was asked to come over, bring Will, and just play video games with the boys while M&D went out for dinner.

Now, Joe was smart. He was more than smart, he was a genius with a photographic memory. He scored higher than the school had ever seen on the Talented and Gifted Test. Seriously, he really was smart. I tell you this only because once you read further you will wonder. Maybe he was just a smartie with no common sense. Maybe he was just your average fourteen year old boy with no common sense, I don't know.

Apparently, the boys became very engaged in the video game and didn't realize that the dog needed to go out. Soon, that became clear. Dog poop stinks.

After lots of "Yuck!" and "Gross!" comments, Joe pondered the best way to clean it up. The vacuum happened to be sitting out and for some strange reason . . . yes, Joe decided that would be the best way to it clean up! Can you believe it??? Michael and Will thought he was a genius!

My dear friend M. had no clue until the next morning when she went to use her (new, expensive) CANISTER vacuum (with a very long hose) and noticed the most horrific smell! Her son informed her of the evenings happenings which M. later told me about.

I was mortified and offered to pay to take it to the vacuum shop. She laughed, said it had occurred to her, but when she thought of walking in and facing the technician, explaining what needed to be done--and why--she couldn't bring herself to do it. Instead, she took it apart, piece by stinky piece, learning the innards of a vacuum better than Mr. Kirby himself!

Luckily, this is a friend who is a sixth grade teacher. She can laugh. She knows all about boys--even smart boys with no common sense. And we are still friends.

Come to think of it tho, she never asked Joe to babysit again!


Party of Seven said...

That is so Preston, he is now 14 and has no common sense when it comes to babysitting.
I actually trust soren 11 and Gavin 9 to babysit more than preston.
YOu are lucky you had the girl in the mix to help. There is no hope for us with Ava only being 2 and the youngest. I always joke with Sean that we should adopt again but around 12-15 years old to help these boys out!! :-)

Brenda said...

Hilarious! What an awful and great story. Boys brains never cease to amaze me. I'm going to tell Evan this story, he will either not see what the big deal was or find it hilarious. I'm curious to find out which.
Thanks for sharing that story!