WARNING: the subject of this post is pretty ICKY and not for the feint of heart or those with a delicate constitution. However, if that's you're problem, you're obviously not the parent of small children...
Yeesh.... it happened last night about 7:30 PM during Fox's showing of "Ice Age".
Since the brood had been good about finishing their dinner of fish sticks, fruit cups, and green beans, I decided I'd reward everyone with the movie and a treat of Halloween Pringles. The Halloween Pringles had come in hermetically sealed small tubs and had an expiration date well into the next millenium. If civilization can survive the concept of stackable food-like products, they can eat day-glo orange Halloween 2004 Pringles when the earth's alien overlords have forced humans into subterannean cities.
I digress as this post isn't about an underground dystopia so much as it's about vomit deposited around my living room like blobs of orange black-light paint. While the kids were watching "Ice Age", I was enrapt in "Go Down, Moses" (a friend had inspired me to pick up some Faulkner) when my reading was interrupted by the chilling phrase, "Zeke is puking!"
Sure enough, my little man was standing in the middle of the living room, coughing up a disgusting mix of fish stick remnants and pineapple chunks suspended in a bright orange medium. Poor little guy was crying, terrified, feeling like... well, like you feel when your dinner comes back for an encore appearance. Just standing there, puking his guts out, helpless and hapless and sicker than hell.
There I was, suspended in time, paralyzed with revulsion, "Oh gawwwwwwwd..." the gunk was thick on the carpet and Zeke was shaking with malaise. All slow motion, moving to him, picking him up and carrying him to the bathroom to put him in front of the toilet. "It's OK, it's OK," I assured him, knowing part of his fear was thinking he'd done something wrong, "Go ahead and be sick in the toilet, mister... poor little man, I know you feel bad, it's not your fault, Zeke, just be sick in there..."
While he stood over the bowl, continuing his emesis, I bolted for the buckets and rags soapy water and Lysol. And I knew I was in for a long night. It wasn't my first experience of puke all over the place and it won't be my last. In my experience, this moment at the computer is just a lull, I'm buying time before the bug hits the girls and several more loads of laundry get spun through the washer.
Too much experience at this. Which makes me wonder why it isn't until every piece of bedding is soaked in puke that I get the "DADDY!!!" call. Why is it that a toddler has to stand there, dumbfounded, kiddie spew by the quart over everything, waiting for daddy to show them the way to the toilet. I know, I know, this sounds rather hard-heartedbut the empiricist in me is forced to ask "Why?" as far as the blip in cognitive development that prevents children from making the connection that puke, like pee and poop, goes in the potty. They certainly have no problem putting other things (i.e. the latest issue of Rolling Stone, a whole bottle of shampoo, socks, etc.) into the toilet, so what's the deal with vomit?
Zeke's still feeling miserable, curled up in a chair swaddled in a blanket, soda crackers and flat 7-Up sustaining him. Hopefully he'll be back to his usual smiling self and the vomit smell will have cleared up. I'm burning incense to handle the latter and I know time is the only cure for the former. Just in time for the drill to start again when Marni or Lilly shows us all what we had for dinner.