Monday, March 8, 2010

Kids, Cosby, and a Whole Lotta Soap

I was seriously tired after my ride around Oak Mountain yesterday. So tired in fact, that I got home after the 30 miles of bouncing off trees, rocks, and getting covered in sweat and mud, that I showered, made a PB&J, and hung up the hammock in the back yard. That, my friends is when this story commenced to unfold.

It was a great day, and we in the south are seriously desperate for a weather change. A change for the warmer and drier that is. Now, the temperature was only about 65, which is what my Mom would refer to as "You still need a jacket weather." Instead, we were all out in the yard in shorts and tee shirts. I guess not much changes...

But my kids, being kids, and apparently unable to perceive cold temperatures decided to go a step further. Now, I mentioned I was tired. That said, I was still in the hammock, and as a result, have no pictures of what transpired, but as Bill Cosby mentioned in his famous "Himself" performance, kids have no clue that sound travels due to some universal childhood brain damage.

I would venture to say they can feel cold even less than they realize that sound travels. As I listened and lazily swung in the hammock, I let this whole thing happen without lifting a finger. This says absolutely squat about my parenting skills. I figured, that if it got really bad, they would have learned a lesson, but I doubt it.

Turn the hose off!

First I heard them talking excitedly from around the corner of the house. Next I heard a vague mention of the hose in the front yard. To which I yelled, "Don't get the hose out! It's cold!" Giggles ensued and shortly I heard the spray of the hose. Now, I have to mention a strange paradox here, we all recognize that kids don't realize that sound travels when it actually does, BUT a sound emanating from a parent actually DOESN'T travel AT ALL, unless it is repeated exactly 27 times at a progressively louder volume. Strange...

For about 10 minutes, intermittent, spraying and giggling, were interrupted only briefly by my "Turn the hose off!" requests from the hammock . Then I heard the word, swimsuits, and the driveway went silent for a time.


The kids laughing returned to the front yard, and I guessed that they had gone inside for the aforementioned swimsuits even though the sun was only warm when you were sitting directly in it. Then there was a loud rustling of plastic or something that distinctly sounded like my older son dragging one of those blue tarps out of the garage and into the front yard. I wondered what was up, but I didn't have to wonder long. I heard, "We need to make this slippery." With that tiny clue, a gigantic slip n' slide came to mind. "Cool idea", I thought...if I were young and impervious to cold temperatures....brrr.

I heard the hose spraying on the tarp, and at this point, I was just listening to hear what would happen next. Yeah, I'm a lousy parent, but I was tired...honestly. Then there was the sound of a child sliding. The slide wasn't followed by excitement, and I figured that the idea was going to be put to bed because it was finally plain to the wet little people that it was too cold to continue. Instead, I heard, "It's not slick enough...mumble mumble...giggle...SOAP! WE NEED SOAP!"

Silence again.

Then a door slammed and the squeals of, "Yeah, pour it all on there!" Then the sound of the hose was heard again. And finally the sliding swish of a kid on the tarp. Followed by "AWESOME!" Then there were more hose sounds and kids repeatedly sliding were heard. They had worked so hard at getting this thing set up, that I wasn't about to stop them. Why buck the trend of swinging in the hammock anyway? I was still tired...really...

This whole process had taken about a hour or so, and with that, my strong parenting skills really kicked in and I seem to have fallen asleep in the last sunny minutes of the day. When I woke, the kids were inside showering to warm up and I found the enormous tarp in the neighbors yard along with a large empty jug of bubble bath. After seeing this set up, I'm sure not going to buy one of the slip'n'slides this year, we are going with the industrial (and cheaper) tarp version.

I really wish I had taken pictures though. It would have made this post perfect.

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