Thursday, January 24, 2008

Why Did You Let Him Do That?

You know, I like to do the dishes while my kids are otherwise engaged, preferably while they are playing at a friend's house that is at least two miles away, but I also have been known to do the dishes during lunchtime. Like today, maybe.

There I was, cheerfully (sort of) rinsing away, loading up the dishwasher, when I looked down. Spe was there, despite the appetizing meal of leftover pizza and grapes that I had served him, standing on the door of the dishwasher, grasping the top rack and trying to grab a cup that is shaped like a boot (another one of Veev's trashures).

"Oh, Spe!" I say, "Get down, please. You're too heavy to stand up there." I lift him down, and then I look at my dishwasher door. It's definitely hanging lower than usual. Instead of a right angle, I now have an obtuse angle (see, contrary to popular belief, I did listen in geometry!). I groan under my breath, because I know what's coming later.

Undoubtedly, when Rhett sees this, he will freak out. This will probably be sometime this weekend, because I have a hard and fast rule to never point out this kind of thing to him. It's better that way. When he does come to me, salivating like a rabid raccoon, I always say blandly, "Oh, that happened a while ago. We've already talked about it." Even if it just happened an hour ago.

Even with my nonchalance, inevitably, a variant of this question will be posed to me: Why did you let him do that???? Which, really, I think is quite unfair. Does Rhett think that every time the kids get ready to do some demo work they come to me and say, "Mother, I would like to take this plug from my radio and scrape it against the wall so hard that it makes a giant hole in the sheet rock and also destroys my radio. Is that okay with you?" And does he really think that I would be like, "Sure, little tyke. You do whatever you want. It's your house, after all."

Because I'm pretty sure that IF my kids asked for my permission, I'd nix the destructo activities. Nip them in the butt, as my sister used to say. (She was almost twenty when she learned it was actually "nip them in the bud". I still get a kick out of that.)

So when Rhett asks me, "Why did you let him do that????" what do you think I should say? I promise to actually use the best one and report back on his reaction. Trust me, you'll want to know what effect your zinger has on my rabid raccoon-like husband. Oh yes, you will.


Sarah Anne said...

Because I want a new dishwasher.

Jen said...

I was really busy eating bon bons and watching Dynasty in the other room and I just couldn't tear myself away for something so trivial as too much quiet in the kitchen!

D said...

Well, I told him to do it while you were watching him- but he doesn't understand "wait until the weekend to make trouble" yet.

Adrienne said...

All of the responses are great. Can you try each one and see how he reacts? I would be totally safe on this one, there could be years in between Justin's use of our dishwasher!! I can offer no advice about husbands and dishwashers, in my world they don't go together!!

The Holcombs said...

"Well Rhett I take any help I can get in doing dishes and unfortunately this situation just ended badly. Maybe you should take over all dishwashing responsibilities."

You think he will jump to do dishes now? Probably not, good luck with this one. Or you should discover it while he is watching the kids and say what happened while I was gone. yeah, I like that one!

David & Amanda said...

Oh the joys of parenting, I seriously can't wait! I really have no advise--kind of a novice on the subject, but I really like what your friend Jen said...funny girl!

Amy said...

Ok I like Amanda's idea...I love it! He will finally get to walk a mile in your shoes if you act like it happened on his time!

I can't wait to hear the end of this...and doesn't Rhett read your blog?

Valerie said...

"Because I feel that washing dishes by hand will make for a better use of my time."

Jill said...

1. Because just letting him do it is much easier than telling him "NO"
2. Because I don't want to squelch his creativity.
3. Because I am afraid of him.
4. How else will he learn about cause and effect?
5. Because I just really enjoy having you ask me "Why did you let him do that?"
6. Because I didn't want to spoil his fun.
7. You mean I'm NOT supposed to let him do these kind of things. Why didn't you tell me this sooner?
8. I just want to make sure that you have enough fix-it projects to work on this weekend.
9. I just couldn't think of a really good reason to stop him.
10. Because he takes after your side of the family.

I suggest using any of these with a heavy dose of sarcasm.

The same thing happened to our dishwasher. We now put a stockpot on the floor to hold up the door while loading and unloading the dishwasher. It makes it strong enough for them to stand on the door without breaking it any further.

JustRandi said...

Maybe you could go with denial.
"Do what? I don't see the problem."
Sometimes it works.

carl b smith and marilyn said...

I wonder about ranting and raving that it really isn't your childs room and that the wall paper won't be put back up until he/she does it, he/herself. Worked for me, DAD

monkie mama said...

OOOH! I HATE the "why did you let them?" comment! I'm getting riled just reading this! I also hate the, "Where were you?" and the "Why weren't you watching them?" comments!

I'm taking notes on all of these lovely retorts! Unfortunately I don't think of snappy comebacks until at least a half hour after the obnoxious question. By then, the retort has kind of lost it's effect.

"You know how you asked me that question yesterday? Well, I know you are but what am I?" Ri-ight!

It's nice to know I'm not just an incompetent mommy~ other mommies have destructos they can't keep up with too. Plus, I KNOW they tag-team!

P.s. that rabid raccoon picture is WAY too cute to do an ornery husband justice!

Leisha said...

Okay, I got a visual of your 20 year old sister biting people in the rear when I read that.

Oh, how life would be easier if I only had your bland sensibility and dry wit. I usually get all blustery and yell, "Oh it's all MY fault" which usually ends with "Why did we even get married in the first place."

Hmmm...I think your way is better.