Wednesday, June 3, 2009


The Step2 platform slide sat next to the playhouse. Major Havoc trudged towards the platform with a patio chair twice his size firmly in his grasp. The Major's new friend, a five-year-old midget named Danny who lives in the house behind ours, stood watching.

"Oh, no!" I called out from the kitchen. I had just arrived upstairs after priming one wall of the new classroom in the basement. "You are not putting that chair on that platform."

Major Havoc looked patiently at me. "Yes I am," he replied matter-of-factly.

", you're not!" I told him.

He considered my statement briefly. "But dad, Danny needs help climbing up."

"Neither you nor Danny are climbing onto the roof of the playhouse!" I commanded. I had visions of Danny's mother looking through the kitchen window of their house and seeing the two boys running around the roof of our playhouse, a good ten feet off the ground. If I was really lucky they'd still have on their clothes. The imaginary shrieks were fading when the Major spoke again.

"Sorry, Danny. We can't climb on the roof."

I turned my attention to the brush and roller that needed to be cleaned. As I started running water in the sink General Mayhem spoke up.

"Major was just up there right before you came up," he told me.


"On the roof. Danny couldn't get up on his own, so Major was going to help him."

To keep relative peace I just shook my head. Inside my head, a voice was screaming, "And you didn't stop them?! You didn't say anything? Boy! Where is your head?!"

The thing is, I know where his head is. It's lost in the preteen testosterone cloud of impending pubescent explosion. He's probably thinking about a certain jug-eared blond girl with dimples who sat next to him at the lunch tables last month. I know he's going to get crazier before he gets saner. I'm fairly certain that I'm headed in the exact opposite direction.

We've always known that Major Havoc would be the child who got us on a first name basis with the emergency room staff at our local hospital, so this is not unexpected behavior. Two minutes later, I noticed that the backyard was quiet. It was too quiet. It was, "There's a five and a six year old boy alone in the backyard" too quiet.

I stuck out my head through the back door, scanning the yard. "Major?"

A moment later came a muffled, giggly reply. "Yes, dad?"

"Where are you?"

More giggles.

"In the chicken coop!"

"Major, get out of the chicken coop!"

Now, there's a sight I want my neighbor to see, the boys climbing out of the hen house. It was over due for a cleaning. If they spent too much time inside, the light waft of chicken droppings would follow them around for hours. Imagine that conversation...

"Dinner smells a little gamier than usual, honey" the neighbor dad would say as he sat at their dinner table.

"That's just your son," mom would reply.

That could end a few play dates.

Being boys, they did not exit the coop through the large hinged door on the side of the building. No, they crawled out backwards through the 12 inch door with the carpet flap, emerging with proud smiles before running off to their next great adventure.

This could be a very long summer...


Brownie said...

Amen.... a very long summer indeed.

So your Major Havoc likes to take his clothes off, too? Red goes outside and strips. I don't know why. I also left him unattended for a few minutes this morning. He'd gone in the house while I was saying good bye to Sir... when I went in (now this was just for a moment!) Red had climbed up on the old wood stove(purely decorative, used as a counter -but the warming ovens on top make useful storage) opened the child-proof cap of his vitamins, climbed up and reached over,and dumped them in with Mr. Fish (aka Beta)

He also loves water... he fills up a big plastic tote with water(outside) - walks over to NoName (the one cat who lets him pick her up) and dumps her in the water. I don't know why that stupid cat lets him get near her.

Just awhile ago I found Red on top of my car, the roof slightly dented.

A very long summer indeed.....

Brownie said...

Arby - I'm generally posting over here these days...

Linda said...

LOL!!! I always looked at homeschool as the thing that kept my mischievious middle child out of trouble!! When she was working on schoolwork, she tended be well-behaved. Summer was WOW!!

By the way...sorry I never called back after your phonecall in Wichita!! I totally understand that the distance was a bit much for dinner!! Especially for someone who's on a diet!! :-)

A get-together in Chicago would be perfect!! Let me know when you're thinking of coming!