There is always an exception to every rule.
Well, at least most rules.
Like playing ball in the house.
Sure, it’s a big no-no when it involves a rowdy group of excitable 8-year-old boys.
But when there’s no one else to play with (the curse of a single child) and said child is all “I don’t have anyone to play with and I’m so aloooooone”...it’s up to Mom to step up and take one for the team.
But, darnnit. It was like 136 degrees outside. And a cool and comfortable 72 degrees INSIDE.
....Math is the universal truth. And math said it was OK to bounce the ball in the house.
So who am I to go against the universe?
All was fine and dandy ‘til the dog decided to get in on the action.
For the record, when you add a 90-pound golden retriever to the mix, one that likes to chase balls and there are a lot of breakable items in the immediate vicinity, that’s when math goes horribly, horribly wrong.
“No, Bear!” my son yelled at our dog that chased after the bouncing ball and interrupted our play for the 20th time that afternoon.
Poor thing thought it was a tennis ball. Imagine her shock when she finally snagged it and - to her horror - discovered it was a rubber ball for racquetball.
She promptly spit it out. Doggy drool dripped down the sides and seeped onto the floor.
My son chuckled, “She doesn’t like the taste of rubber balls?”
I snorted, “Please. She eats dog poo. It’s not like she has a discerning palette.”
Then she shocked us all by snagging the ball once again, drool and all, and running down the hallway. Never to be seen again.
“What can I say?” I shrugged at her escape. “She’s a complicated soul.”
So the dog stole the ball, which meant we had to move our fun to video games. And, for the record, this mom stinks at all video games created after 1982.
Sure. I ROCKED Pac Man back in the day. But it’s been downhill ever since.
And the controllers have gotten just as complicated as the games.
Seriously, there aren’t enough hands in the world to maneuver all the buttons and joysticks and slots and lights.
“Uh, mom, what are you doing?” my son asked, standing over me where I had crashed onto the couch and begun taking off my shoes and socks.
Page 2 of 2 - “Freeing up my feet,” I answered, gesturing toward the NASA-inspired game controller. “‘Cuz I have a feeling two hands aren’t gonna get it done.”
“What’s that noise?” I asked in trepidation about 20 minutes later.
My son just shrugged, “Don’t worry,” he assured me. “It’s nothing important.”
I looked at him in fear. “Uh, we just walked up to the entrance of a dark and scary cave and I definitely heard some kind of moaning grrrr noise inside. Believe me. I’m worried.”
He rolled his eyes and insisted I was overreacting.
Oh, I don’t think so.
“Listen here, Mister,” I said. “My dad was a U.S. Marine, so I understand and respect the importance of reconnaissance.”
And before my son could ask what in the heck “reconnaissance” meant, I added, “So believe you me, I’m gonna find out what’s in a dark and scary cave before I stick my neck in some dark and scary cave and get eaten by some dark and scary bear.”
His eyes got THIS BIG then he said, “Geesh, relax, Mom. It’s just a Creeper.”
Oh. That sounded waaaay worse than a bear.
Where’s Pac Man when you need him?
You can follow additional adventures at kelleybaldwinlifelikemine.blogspot.com. Kelley is a former editor of the Maryville Daily Forum.