Surely I’m not the only one who has ever done something outlandishly stupid. Maybe you have, too. My now adult son and I look back on an incident that happened when he was ten years old and still laugh as though it is a joke we are hearing for the first time.
Growing up, my inquisitive male offspring watched everything his dad did and copied him in many ways. His dad knew how to fix just about anything in and out of the house, with enviable skills in auto mechanics, and household electricity and plumbing.
So, when the drain of the kitchen sink got stopped up and his dad was still at work, this was a job that my young son was willing to undertake. He first asked me to get him a small flat bowl, which I did. Then he went out to our garage to look for the wrench he needed. That, in itself, was no small task. The huge garage was full of every tool in every imaginable size, organized by my husband’s engineer mind. But, even though our son was only ten, he knew his dad’s systematic arrangement.
All right, he came back into the house, proper-sized wrench in hand. Ten-year-old plumber to the rescue! He opened the cabinet doors underneath the sink and placed himself and the yellow basin under the J-trap of the drain. He used his wrench to loosen the proper joints and open up the pipe. He carefully caught the dirty water and gunk which was stopping up the drain in the plastic container I had given him.
“Here, Mom,” he said, handing up to me the bowl full of messy muck. “Get rid of this dirty water.”
Well, that’s what I did. I immediately turned the basin upside down over the drain of the kitchen sink. Before Mechanical Engineer Junior had time to react, the slimy, sticky, crud-filled water went through the open section of the pipe out onto the floor! And, of course, also onto my son! You can be sure that the next time I was his plumber’s helper, he told me explicitly where to pour the water!
A Few Laughable Lines
By Connie Carlisle Polley, 2018