Letting son help wash the starship

Yesterday was a disaster. Or at least it felt that way. While the USS Buick LaCrosse was in dry-dock, I decided to get son to help me wash car. Granted, he is three and really just likes to spray the hose. But, I figured what could happen? I packed a few cold beverages in a cooler and brought the iPod dock to play some good tunes while I set forth to clean an otherwise filthy car…you know, pollen and Wheaties Fuel cereal bits that had been strewn about. I found a matchbox, pennies, marbles, a lego, and a used lollipop that had stuck to the floor under the seat.

See,  I was trying to save some money. Wife and I had become lazy and taken the cars to the carwash to save us time. I thought if I saved a penny here, I could spend it there. So, son and I are all set to embark on our intergalactic mission while wife was at Wally World superstore buying sundries and such for the great Spring Break journey. The car was getting clean and finally I realized it was time to vacuum the floor mats and the car seats. I turn off the hose and run down to the basement to get R2D2. You know, the shop vac that looks like a little robot with flexible arms. All it needed was to beep.

I step into the garage and see son, holding the hose, spraying full tilt into the car. INTO the car. I yell, “stop” and snatch the hose away, maybe a little too forcibly. I turn to go shut it off and get towels, when son turns to me and states, “I am going to spray you,” and opens the sprayer onto my back. At this point I am not real happy. I grab it from him again and then run to the nozzle and disconnect the hose from the house.

At this point, I am seeing red. When I run up the stairs to retrieve the towels, I notice dog has wet the floor. Really…at this point, what more could happen? Fuming, I get on the phone and instruct wife to return immediately to help with this mess. The car I could handle, but not the urine-soaked stairwell.

Dog is a good dog, for the most part. She is fourteen years old and has cataracts, is mostly deaf, and has arthritis in her joints. Previously, this year, our veterinarian had discussed palliative care for her hoping she would live a little longer. She bounced back, but now I am beginning to fear for the worst. She no longer eats her food. Now, that may not be unusual for some dogs, but dog ate a one pound bag of peanut M&M’s in Wisconsin around Valentine’s Day ten years ago. I held her while wife gave her a medically instructed dose of salt water and hydrogen peroxide to help her vomit. The vomit stayed in our backyard until the permafrost finally melted in April. Lovely. Last year, dog ate a loaf of bread. An eighteen pound dog ate an entire loaf of bread, at least it was whole wheat.

Wife and kids are preparing to head towards sun and surf while I remain in the ’05 to get much needed rest and a break from the world. I plan to eat, sleep, swim/bike/run, watch baseball, and if possible work on my dissertation. Now, the dissertation is the primary point of staying home.  Notice though, I listed it last. Perhaps it is not the most exciting part of the “Vacation.” I also have to somehow squeeze in the 2011 taxes where I noticed that the new tax codes mean we will owe money this year instead of a getting a refund. I have talked before about Star Trek’s ideal of no longer using money. I wonder, though, if they still have to pay taxes. The worker man earns the money, and the tax man taketh away. C’est  la vie.

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