Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Represent

So this weekend, Husbandrinka takes off for fucking PARIS with a parting, "I wish I could stay here with you" to me, and I'm like, "Look, not like I'm not tons of fun or anything, but I doubt that Lawrence Olivier could have pulled off that line," and once he leaves the kids and I realize that this is what our TO DO list looks like:

1. Clean the apartment because my mama's sister is visiting from Russia and she will be visiting us later in the week and the apartment better look all sparkly because otherwise there will be so much blog fodder that we will all have to wear diapers because we won't have time for potty breaks. So, clean the apartment.

The kids and I have an organizational meeting and decide that they will clean their rooms while I clean the rest of the apartment.  Because they belong to a much better union than I do.

So my 10 year old daughter goes and CSI's her room and it looks great and my seven year old son decides to conserve his energy for a cleaning burst that he's sure is imminent by sitting down with a Batman coloring book. As I'm cleaning the apartment and experiencing the accompanying euphoria, I occassionally peek into his room and see that no, so far he's been totally spared any OCD cleaning tendencies. And while he's colored the most amazing picture of Robin ever, I really need him to get the fucking blankets off the floor and just make the bed.

I am cleaning the bathroom when he comes in to tell me that coloring has completely exhausted him and he would prefer to play the Wii while I cleaned his room, because, as he eloquently puts it, "you're the adult and it's sort of your job." Although I appreciate his honesty, I point out to him that I'm very busy myself and he delivers the quintessential line, "you're not doing anything, mom" which would play a lot better if I hadn't actually been scrubbing the toilet at that very moment.

I explain patiently that he will not do any electronics until he at the very least makes his bed and he says "no electronics? You mean I can't even turn the light on?!" and I say, "you know what I mean, no Wii, no computer, no DS," and in a move that would shame Dustin Hoffman, he starts crying immediately, as though I told him that he will be sold into child slavery (I have no idea if the market for that actually exists, by the way, but Buyer Beware, if you get my drift. Biggest scam ever.) So the crying and the gnashing of teeth is going on and I'm so not falling for it, the bed is getting made.

Suddenly, my daughter appears at the bathroom door and now the three of us are in the tiny bathroom, with Nicki's litterbox to keep us company. And my daughter says, "Mommy, you're making him upset." So I say, "This is between him and me," and she says, "My brother is upset. I have a right to be here as his representative."

What representative? Are we at the Hague?
Well, apparently we are, because the next thing I hear is that while other children are enjoying a weekend of debauchery, they are faced with hardcore scullery.  Those may not be the exact words that they use, but the message is loud and clear.
Oh, but at least I'm in the bathroom with my children.  Not some place stupid, like Paris. 

46 Comments:

Anonymous Stepiphany said...

At least your kids inherited your sharp mind and quick wit, so that when they whine, sulk, and delay it's a bit entertaining.

April 21, 2009 at 8:00 AM  
Blogger TeacherMommy said...

You know, I'm so confused about where kids get their manipulative skills. Because I would NEVER be like that. Naturally.

My kids are still 3+ and 2, and I'm already getting the guilt trips for daring to deny their every whim. I was informed yesterday by the 3-year-old that I had "hurt his feelings" by informing him that no, we weren't there yet and it was going to take a little longer before we would get to Burger King.

I'm doomed when it comes to actually pulling the no-electronics consequence for not cleaning his room.

April 21, 2009 at 8:16 AM  
Anonymous Stesha said...

Love your kids and their comebacks. Too funny. Wish I could go to Paris, but that would mean life is fair.

Hugs and Mocha,
Stesha

April 21, 2009 at 8:17 AM  
Blogger countryfriedmama said...

Oh, the poor children. At least they'll have material for their tell-all book later in life.

April 21, 2009 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger CSY said...

Oh WOW!!! My daughter would NEVER be one of her brothers 'representative', she'd be the one MAKING them cry!

When they're done cleaning their rooms, may I borrow them? Maybe my kids will learn something...

April 21, 2009 at 8:24 AM  
Blogger Jeanne said...

"Representative"? Seriously?

April 21, 2009 at 8:28 AM  
Blogger Belle said...

Paris? That bastard! I looked into that whole child-slave labour thing. It's going strong.
I just couldn't get anybody to take mine.

April 21, 2009 at 8:56 AM  
Blogger Cindy said...

Haha!
Those poor servants :)

April 21, 2009 at 8:56 AM  
Blogger Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

Caveat emptor, indeed! Yeah, the market for children is pretty dicey. I've got three excellent examples of how one can be duped by adorable faces and then hit with "you're the adult and it's sort of your job" comments from them on a regular basis. Gah.

Stoopid Paris.

(p.s. I loved this post in every way.)

April 21, 2009 at 8:57 AM  
Blogger *Akilah Sakai* said...

My goodness! So you've got little con artists in your home as well? Neither of my two clean their rooms unless you threaten their toys. It's agonizing to get them to lift a finger!

April 21, 2009 at 9:01 AM  
Blogger Roadchick said...

My counter-offer would have been:

"Fine. You can represent him in his bedroom while you make his bed and clean his room. And no electronics for either of you until that kitchen sink is gleaming."

See, that way, the children get a mini-lesson on dictatorships and how democracy is crushed and you get a clean house.

Win-win.

April 21, 2009 at 9:07 AM  
Blogger Smart A$$ Mom said...

I'd say your degree in law has extended far past any statute of limitations. I mean, at least people are getting their monies worth. Offer them the bar next time instead.

April 21, 2009 at 9:10 AM  
Blogger Comedy Goddess said...

Maybe show them the Karate Kid, remember?, Wax on Wax off, and then the work is all done! And they have a new found love for Zen, and Karate. What a good mommy you are!

April 21, 2009 at 9:11 AM  
Blogger Carolyn...Online said...

I know it's wrong that they were ganging up on you but is it weird that I was a little jealous of their unified front? My kids just throw each other under the bus.

April 21, 2009 at 9:24 AM  
Blogger mo.stoneskin said...

I just ordered two bumper packs of diapers, do you think that'll be enough?

April 21, 2009 at 9:25 AM  
Blogger Comedy Goddess said...

As a matter of opinion, I think you should put Ulysses down and get into some proper inspirational literature on how to cultivate a young boy into being helpful. Stephen Dedalus is no example for a young boy. He is so gloomy!

April 21, 2009 at 9:27 AM  
Blogger Marinka said...

Yes, I forgot to mention the part where I felt sort of fabulous that she was sticking up for her brother. And when she was going on and on about how I make them clean their room instead of having fun, my son said "for once, I agree with her."

I mean, I'd feel better if they were sticking up for each other in the general sense and not in union against me, but I'll take it.

April 21, 2009 at 9:33 AM  
Anonymous Kristine said...

Instead of child labor, I just put mine out in the front yard with a poster that says "Free Boy." It might work better if we lived on a busier street.

April 21, 2009 at 9:33 AM  
Blogger Amy @ Milk Breath and Margaritas said...

Your husband must be made to pay in some way. It doesn't really matter if it's not fair. It's just one of the rules. Nothing else will make you feel better, so he must fall on that sword upon his return from EFFING PARIS.

April 21, 2009 at 9:58 AM  
Blogger Mary@Holy Mackerel said...

I'm probably really offbase here, but you sound a little bitter.

April 21, 2009 at 10:10 AM  
Anonymous peajaye said...

...i think in the sit-com version of this: the cat comes in, takes a dump, the music goes WAM-WAM as you roll your eyes. cut to commercial.

April 21, 2009 at 10:45 AM  
Anonymous Sophie, Inzaburbs said...

I wanted to make you feel better by telling you that the weather in Paris sucks... but it will be sunny. All week.
This courtesy of the Weather in Paris widget my husband set up on my desktop. Which was nice of him, considering that is the closest I will probably get to Paris in the next decade.

I agree with you, children are no good at housework. I don't know why I had them. One of those Japanese house keeper robots would have been cheaper. And it wouldn't talk back.

April 21, 2009 at 10:49 AM  
Blogger Heather, Queen of Shake Shake said...

I never realized this before, but I need to fire my fucking union.

April 21, 2009 at 10:54 AM  
Blogger Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

I love everyting you write, but this one is a favorite.

I have the teen version of the older sister, younger brother. I have succumbed to apying them for chores. I figure I would end up giving them money anyways and this wasy I don't spend my entire weekends cleaning.

April 21, 2009 at 11:01 AM  
Blogger Kate Coveny Hood said...

I remember how painful it was to have "clean your room" or "do your homework" hanging over your head... I was a big avoider. Now I have "go to work" and "enforce bedtimes" to contend with... My attitude hasn't changed much.

April 21, 2009 at 11:04 AM  
Blogger Liza said...

My husband is in freakin' VEGAS this week and I am "working from home" while I take care of the kids. How the hell did they get Paris and Vegas and we got toilet brushes and bratty kids?

April 21, 2009 at 11:54 AM  
OpenID cluckandtweet.com said...

Our son has declared his room to be both a national park (to which you must pay admission) and its own country, which he, of course, rules. We then told him that he didn't actually own his room but that he could buy it for approximately $30,000. He ignored that part and still claims it as his own.

April 21, 2009 at 11:56 AM  
Anonymous Coco said...

Marinka...you are a SAINT. Boy child would have so been in deep poo along with girl child defending him. You are a SAINT because my reaction with have been more along the lines of "postal".

Damnit Paris... why couldn't you go?

April 21, 2009 at 12:39 PM  
Blogger Domestic Goddess (In Training) said...

Poor husbrandrinka for missing these moments. Poor Marinka for going to prison after he returns from Paris and she kills him because he left her with the kids and cleaning... at the same time!!!

April 21, 2009 at 1:31 PM  
Blogger Nicole said...

Oh I hate it when my kid pulls that shit. He has started throwing temper tantrums at the age of 9! I told him I would slap the taste out of his mouth if he keeps it up. Needless to say I have not slapped him and he stills acts like a little shit. Yes I'm all bluff.

April 21, 2009 at 1:39 PM  
Blogger Roshni Mitra Chintalapati said...

I really don't mind wearing a diaper....

April 21, 2009 at 2:27 PM  
Blogger K said...

Why is it that bathrooms are always such a popular place to cry?

April 21, 2009 at 3:15 PM  
Anonymous Andrea's Sweet Life said...

My kids are also fond of saying that I'm "not doing anything" even as I'm sitting at the dinner table, trying to eat, or squatting on the toilet, trying to poop.

I wonder what they would consider "doing something"?

April 21, 2009 at 3:20 PM  
Blogger lizspin said...

You should be reading Ulysses, Marinka, and leaving those kids to suffer the consequences of their own destructive behavior!

That's what I do. . . and look where it's gotten me!

April 21, 2009 at 3:31 PM  
Blogger Jennifer, Playgroups Are No Place For Children said...

My husband, every time he goes on any sort of trip, says the same stupid shit about how he'd rather be home. He's such a liar.

And isn't awesome when the kids think it's our job to clean? Little do they know, but the reason I had kids was for the free labor.

April 21, 2009 at 3:45 PM  
Blogger Mags said...

Your daughter is hilarious.

I'm forever telling one of my children to stay out of what's going down between me and another child. I think I'll bust out laughing if any one of them defends another in front of me.

April 21, 2009 at 4:34 PM  
Blogger Petra a.k.a The Wise (*Young*) Mommy said...

Yeah, I get that with my son and daughter. I will be yelling at, um, I mean, sternly disciplining my 9 yr old stepson and my 3 yr old daughter will say "stop yelling at him Mommmy, he's just a boy."

And then I feel like such a jerk that I go in the other room and cry and realize that I am officially outnumbered.

April 21, 2009 at 4:42 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

marketing idea for child slavery - package product in attractive box with clear plastic front and slogan: "Hi, there! We are here to destroy you!"

April 21, 2009 at 7:52 PM  
Blogger Anna See said...

I've had my daughter say, "What, am I your servant??" and "Why am I the only one who has to work around here?" Ugh.

At least you had Paris. Oh yeah. Sorry!

April 21, 2009 at 8:15 PM  
Anonymous Maravonda said...

Will it help you to know that I got so furious over the cleaning today that I went outside and threw bricks at my own house? Long story, cracked siding, remorseful husband, frightened dogs. Damn. I didn't mean to scare the dogs....

April 21, 2009 at 9:32 PM  
Blogger anymommy said...

Your children are a little frighteningly intelligent. I'm kind of hoping for average kids. Husbandrinka, on the other hand, might be dumb. Really? Who would buy that Paris line?

April 22, 2009 at 12:36 AM  
Blogger Kirsten said...

Next time send the kids to Paris with him. I know how much your kids enjoy it there.

April 22, 2009 at 12:46 AM  
Anonymous LadyFi said...

You crack me up every time! And you didn't even raise your voice? Amazing...

Sounds as if you have got some gutsy kids.... Annoyingly so.

April 22, 2009 at 2:15 AM  
Blogger MommyTime said...

"My brother is upset. I have a right to be here as his representative."

I am laughing loudly. She is a genius.

April 22, 2009 at 10:41 AM  
Blogger ShallowGal said...

I've been to Paris and I've been to your bathroom. The food is better in Paris but the atmosphere is better in your bathroom, so it's really a draw.

April 22, 2009 at 4:09 PM  
Anonymous MommyGeekology said...

And this is why she is going to be the next freakin' [insert famous lawyer name here].

Why can't I remember one?

Oh yeah. Erin Brokovich. Like her.

May 6, 2009 at 2:51 PM  

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