I Want a Cold!

I Want a Cold!


I Want a Cold!

By Chuck Smith From Brain Sediment

"Honey, can I have a cup of lemon tea," my wife asked me the other day. Normally, my wife doesn't ask me to do anything, knowing my laziness has no bounds. But my wife had a cold - a very bad cold.

For most illnesses, my wife would just "suck it up" and get her cute little behind out of bed, fully realizing that nothing would get done around the house without her. But today, she was lingering beneath the bed covers. That's how I knew she was really sick.

My wife is tougher than Randall "Tex" Cobb on his best day (and for those of you who don't know who Randall "Tex" Cobb is - shame on you!). Her finely developed sense of martyrdom compels her to force herself into activity, even in the face of the killer cold. Being the caring husband that I am (and not wanting her germs spread through the entire house), I suggested she stay in bed.

So, even though it was a Sunday, which is a very inconvenient day for her to be sick (because I usually park my large, ugly behind on my favorite chair and watch TV all day), I knew I would have to "suck it up" and do something feared by most men. Parenting.

For me, watching the kids for an entire day is nothing short of exhausting. And the kids don't seem to want to make it any easier for me. You'd think they'd just sit there and watch TV all day, like Daddy.

But no. They want me to feed them. I made my first blunder by asking what they wanted eat. "Pancakes," shouted my daughter. "Buttery eggs," shouted my son. "How about cereal?" shouted Daddy. Unfortunately, since I'd already made the mistake of asking, I was trapped.

Lucky for me, my wife has the good sense to purchase microwave pancakes and egg beaters just for these kinds of emergencies. I was saved from forcing Cocoa Puffs down the kids' throats, and after getting most of the dishes into the sink, I tried to sit down and watch TV with the kids.

"I want to watch Nickelodeon," griped my son. "I want to watch the Disney Channel," moaned my daughter. "I want to watch ESPN," I whined. Right away, they knew to ignore me. So it became a contest of evenly matched opponents.

The next 15 minutes involved both of them trying to make their cases to me while attempting to harass or cajole the other to their side. I finally put an end to it by switching to ESPN. Instantly, they were comrades in arms, and presented a united front in their TV viewing preference.

I went upstairs to see if the wife were feeling any better (in hopes that she would come downstairs and relieve me of my parenting misery). She was still sleeping, but I'm pretty sure she could hear my footsteps and closed her eyes as I approached. Note to self - get some slippers with a soft sole.

Having "made" breakfast, I decided to save myself a little work and hit the drive-thru at McDonald's. Even a decision as simple as taking the easy way out and feeding my kids fat-laden fast food is an exercise in humility.

You can't just order a regular meal with my kids. My daughter won't eat cheese and doesn't like onions on her burger. My son won't eat anything but cheese and bread, so I have to order a cheeseburger without the meat, onions, ketchup, mustard, or pickles. Just cheese and a bun. And God forbid if you forget to ask for a girl's toy for her and a boy's toy for him.

I don't know how my wife does it. I couldn't even relax after lunch because the kids had other plans. They wanted to play games. We decided to play Funny Bunny. This game makes Chutes and Ladders seem like chess, involving no skill whatsoever. I still couldn't win.

Having exhausted my supply of stupid game patience, I went and checked on the wife. She was starting to feel a little bit better, and so she asked me to bring her some more tea and to prop up her pillows so she could watch some Lifetime chick-flick movie.

I think I'll use her toothbrush tonight to see if I can catch her cold. Seems like a pretty good gig. At least it's a heck of a lot easier than parenting.

About the Author

Chuck Smith's Brian Sediment comes from the mind of a middle-aged married man trying to raise two children while remaining sane. Brain Sediment is written for nothing more noble than to make you smile. Mr. Smith works in the high tech industry in Massachusetts, although he wishes he were anywhere else. You can contact Chuck at www.brainsediment.com or via email at csmith@brainsediment.com.

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