The Life of Liz

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. ~Anne Frank

Friday, March 2, 2012

Apples, Bananas and Lies

Playing With the Kiddos:

My niece, Paola, came over to my house for the first time the other day. It soon became apparent that her four-year-old mind is having some difficulty with the whole concept of holy matrimony. "Where do you sleep?" she asked me. "Right there," I said, pointing to the bed. Her face accepted this but quickly became troubled. "And where does Uncle Eli sleep?" With a perfectly straight face, I replied, "outside." Both her mother and my husband, standing nearby, cracked up laughing, thus proving my point: it's fun to lie to children. It takes years of hardened cynicism to generate adequate BS filters and the tiny humans among us simply haven't had the time. We eventually did tell her that, of course, Eli and I share the same sleeping location but somehow that seemed even less plausible to Paola than her uncle sleeping outside. She eventually decided that he must sleep upstairs in the spare bedroom.

Taking the Plunge:

Having a husband means I will never need to plunge a toilet. Of course, having a husband also necessitates plunging a toilet, but that is a separate issue. Right after Eli had left for work at 5am, I made the horrifying discovery that something had gone terribly terribly wrong with the bathroom. A few thoughts scurried through my sleeping brain like tiny hamsters, namely Oh Sweet Christ My Toilet Is A Poo Swamp and Wow, This Is NOT A Job For Team Me (I think only in capitalized words). So I did what any self-respecting wuss would do: I called my husband and begged him to come home from work.

Why, you may ask, did I not just gird up my loins and get on with it myself? Two reasons. One, I had absolutely no idea where Eli had squirreled away the plunger. It turned out he had stashed it on top of the wardrobe, behind some shoes, in a couple plastic you do. Secondly, I have actually no idea how to plunge a toilet. I've seen it done a couple times but I've never had occasion to brave the poo swamp personally. And quite frankly, 5 in the morning is not the ideal time to acquire a new skill set!

In any case, I called Eli. He suggested it might not be terribly urgent and couldn't he just deal with it when he got home? Hmmmm, I'm no math whiz, but I do know that Broken Toilet + Home All Day = Terrible Idea. He, thankfully, saw my point, came home, and fixed my whole world snicker snack. He's a good husband. Meanwhile, I tactfully refrained from mentioning who exactly could claim the fault for clogging ye olde crapper. I try to be a good wife.

Math Whiz:

I am rapidly garnering a completely undeserved reputation as a math genius. Eli is taking a math class with a professor that doesn't explain things very well. I saw his notes and the teacher appears to have a seriously disorganized mind. So he enlisted my help (I may not be able to fix a toilet, but I can Google like nobody's business!). Now, I do not actually know things about math, having spend the last ten years actively trying to forget it all to make room for more important things like song lyrics. But like I said, I do know how to type "what is an irrational number?" into my Google homepage. And as luck would have it, I stumbled upon a site called And while I have serious doubts about the veracity of that claim, it is without question the best website I've ever seen for explaining concepts to persons lacking mathematical aptitude. So Eli and I used that site to unravel the mystery of his math homework. He came back to me after his next class and happily reported that his own awesomeness far exceeded that of mortal man, all thanks to me.

This was closely followed by another math related incident which firmly cemented my reputation as the goddess of knowledge. Jonothan, my brother-in-law, received a text with a word problem to solve. He and Eli worked on it for about 2 hours, while my sister-in-law and I were cooking ceviche (seriously delicious, Maryuri is an amazing cook). After lunch, the problem still unsolved, they enlisted my help. I solved it in 5 minutes. I cannot repeat this enough: that was nearly all straight up luck. I bumbly stumlied my way on to the right answer, not through skill, but because I can bumble faster than other people. This looks remarkably similar to knowing what I'm doing, due to the speed, but I am here to tell you that they are diametrically different. So to recap: math whiz, no; lucky dog, you betcha. And hey, I'll take it.

Also, if you were curious (here's looking at you, Uncle Jim), the math problem was: You have $100 with which to buy 100 pieces of fruit. Bananas cost $0.50, apples cost $5, watermelons cost $10. How many of each fruit can you buy?


Maeve's Momma March 2, 2012 at 6:12:00 PM MST  

See, aunties can lie to the children consequence-free. I have to tell Maeve the truth because otherwise I have to live with (and remember) the lie.

Marissa March 8, 2012 at 2:19:00 PM MST  

Way to go, Math Whiz! Who knew how much your strenghts and weaknesses would change with life in a different culture/country? Very interesting...

Also, husbands are wonderful. :-)

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A brand new mom trying to navigate the crazy world of mixed families, babies, and working full time. Phew! Just writing that makes me want to lie down.


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