Tuesday, July 18, 2006

When Eighty-Eight Fingers Almost Burned Down the House

Yesterday seemed like a typical morning as I was awakened by the soft snorts and chortles of the Fellers from across the room (yes, the Fellers our in our room--not out of choice, only our house is that small--a blog for another day) and the too hot and bright summer sun shined in around the cracks in my shabby curtains. Time to get up--Ready or not! I rolled out of bed and ushered the troops toward the door. Then I opened the door , and ZOOOOOM! The cat sped past my door down the hall nearly singing my toes off my feet, Eighty-Eight Fingers trailing mere inches behind.

"STOP!" I yell in my early morning, froggy, pre-coffee voice. "Were you chasing kitties?" I begin the interrogation in a tone sure to instill the terror necessary for EEF to produce the correct response...

He looked at me, face devoid of expression, and shook his blond buzz-cut head slowly back and forth, even though he obviously was. Guess I will have to work on that terror instilling voice--put that on the list.

And then I smelled it...SMOKE!!! I smelled SMOKE!! What theā€¦?!? We have three smoke alarms in our <1000 square foot home and none of them was blaring, BUT I SMELLED SMOKE!

Quick scan of the living room--no smoke.

Leap to the kitchen/dining room where the smell was more intense. This room was obviously the source, but where? Where was it coming from?

It took me all of two point five seconds for my caffeine-deprived brain to register that the power light was on the toaster oven. One, possibly two forceful strides took me across to the far side of the room where the offending toaster oven was burning up all of the stray crumbs in its catch-pan into shrivelly little charcoal pieces (shut up! That is the absolute last place I clean) and almost burning the miscellaneous stuff on the counter around it. I opened the door and reclosed it because that usually shuts the thing off. What the...???It didn't work. The light wouldn't go off. It was necessary to repeat this process several times to convince my sluggish brain cells that opening the door and reclosing it was not the solution, so for now just open it and leave it open.

You see, EEF has a tendency to be very quiet and very sneaky in the morning, waking up before any human has a right to going on various search and destroy missions so that it is truly amazing that he is almost five and this house is still standing. I have considered surgically affixing a bell to him...

Time to question EEF. Cue terror inducing tone, "Did you touch the toaster oven??!?"

From EEF: Mute, lying, headshake.


From me, with the tone, only now a touch of shrillness: "Were you chasing kitties and touching the toaster oven??!!??" to which EEF dutifully answered with that headshake of his, because, you know, it really is possible for the toaster oven to turn itself from toast to cook (which, I later discovered after adequate cups of coffee, was the reason it wouldn't shut off) and for the lazy cats to just decide all of a sudden to run around like demons possessed. Sure. That's all possible. NOT!

Me: "EEF, you are going to bed until you tell me the truth. I know you touched the toaster oven and chased the cats and I know that you are telling me lies right now so you won't get in trouble. But you know what? I don't like lies. Lie to me and you will get in bigger trouble. Last chance--did you touch the toaster oven and chase the kitties? (Headshake) Okay, you will go to bed, then, until you are ready to tell me the truth."

Have I mentioned how stubborn EEF is? It took almost an hour and five visits from me for him to finally admit the error of his ways. Ugh! He is almost five and he still has no filter, no voice in his head telling him This isn't a good idea. He just keeps getting into things, wreaking havoc on things, and now we can add almost burning the house down to his list. Sometimes, I think he is more challenging to raise than all of the others put together. Then I remember The Girl and her pre-teen tantrums (bad, just BAD) and I think, well maybe this isn't so bad. Maybe I can do this. Yeah right.


Blogger Michele said...

So glad it was just the toaster oven. Good for you for sticking with it until he finally admitted it.

18 July, 2006 09:19  
Blogger HomeFireBlue said...

Oh dear, oh dear ... is this what I have to look forward to?


Of course, I lock mine in their rooms ... bwahahahahahahah!

Glad he wasn't burning the cat down.


18 July, 2006 12:12  
Blogger gingajoy said...

ooooh. i know i am mere months away from that type of activity with mine. time to install the deadlocks!

18 July, 2006 13:48  
Anonymous wolfbaby said...

*comfort*...I am so not looking forward to those days... Now I have the baby gates (yes two of them) to keep cookie monster in her room and from the kitchen's deadly tools... but I don't know how much longer that will last *sigh*... *prayer* hopefully a little longer.

19 July, 2006 15:36  

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