Thursday, September 19, 2002

There is a special place in hell for thankless children.

My son calls me yesterday. Wants to know if I can get paid early? Someone at the skate park is selling his board for $30 and he wants it.

�You have a board.�

�Mom! My board is crap, this one is worth $100 and he�s selling it cheap.�

�I�ll see what I can do�

Well I know how much he loves skateboarding and I get all mushy inside. I go ask the boss if I can get paid early, no easy task since I spent the better part of that morning in a screaming match with him. (it was a draw)

Now I leave work, check in hand, and head to my friends house to see if she can cash it for me since the banks are closed. Half way there I realize that I am nearly out of gas, running on fumes. If she can�t cash the check I am walking home.

Twenty minutes later I am on my way back to town, bank card in hand. I get the cash and call my son on his cell phone.

�Never mind Mom, the kid sold it to someone else. Later� Click.

GOOD GRIEF! Your welcome.

I am still sore from baseball last weekend, hobbling around, dragging my old bones home at last, its 6:15pm. I walk in the door, and I want to cry. I am by no stretch of the imagination an even mediocre housekeeper, but my son lost his mind today, and quite possibly his life when he gets home.

Before me lay clothes, papers and miscellaneous sporting equipment strewn in a path from the front door through the kitchen and living room all the way back to my bedroom. I can�t believe that that kid had the nerve to ask me for money.

One hour later my son comes rushing in, �Mom, can we put that $30 in the bank so we can save for a new board?� When he says �we� he means me. �Fine� I tell him, I�ll give you the $30, you clean the house.�

That�s when he really lost his mind. He starts to rant and rave and go on. His head starts to spin and he starts spewing pea soup. (ok that isn�t exactly accurate, but pretty close)

�I have to do everything around here, I can�t clean the whole house, God, I am only 11.�

My turn to lose my mind, �What all, exactly, do you do around here?�

He looks at me, �I take the garbage out to the basement and then to the curb.� He is serious. He thinks he has won the argument.

�Ok, when you took the garbage to the curb last time, how many bags were there?�

He is not sure where I am going with this but he raises his eyes to the ceiling, thinking, counting on his fingers, �6 whole bags!� he says. He seriously believes that this is a huge number.

�Lets break this down. The garbage truck comes every two weeks, so in 14 days you have taken out 6 bags. So if you only took one bag out on any given day, you would have 8 days where you did nothing. Hmmm. If it takes you, say, 30 seconds to take the bag out of the house, and another 30 to take each bag from the basement to the curb. That�s a minute a bag. $30 for 6 bags, $5 per bag per minute?�

�Sounds right.� He doesn�t really want to do the math, so he concedes.

�At $5 per minute, you want me to pay you $300 per hour. How do I get THAT job?!!!�

He is speechless now, and I am cleaning the house myself. I finally get to the end of the papers and I turn around, I can�t believe it, he has actually dropped his coat in the middle of the living room floor.

At that moment I understood how people, who were not wise to begin with, could kill their own children.

Calmly I look at him, �Just how long do you imagine I will consent to live this life? Where I go to work each day to a job I hate, so I can feed and clothe you and buy you skateboards when the whim takes you, getting nothing but shit on in return? Hmmm?�

I leave him to ponder this as I lock myself in the bathroom, just in case the urge to kill him truly takes hold of me.

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