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Murder in the Kitchen

Murder in the Kitchen

Our garbage disposal died. Although died isn’t really the right word. I would say it was murdered. How was it murdered? It died a slow and painful death at the hands of my three-year and ten-year-old children.

At least once a week, they chuck one of my daughter’s Lilliputian-sized spoons into the left side of the sink despite my repeated reminders for them not to do so. The spoon easily tumbles into the drain and then along comes some unsuspecting person (usually not me) to clean up the kitchen. Inevitably the switch is thrown; the disposal chokes on the tiny spoon, sputters, and stops. Interestingly, the spoon always escapes unscathed but the disposal gets much worse with each episode. Even after fishing out the offending flatware, it refuses to start without a few kicks (a scientifically proven method for restarting any kitchen appliance). Then, it makes a weird grinding/groaning noise while attempting to chew up our food waste—which it never gets quite right—leaving us with the unsavory task of fishing out half-ground-up food to throw in the trash.

Last night, my children plotted to finish it off. I could hear them whispering at the table but didn’t think to eavesdrop on what I assumed was meaningless chatter. Big mistake. At exactly 7:02 p.m., they got up from their places, took their dishes to the sink and dropped in not one, but two miniscule spoons into the left side of the sink. (I believe my son was the mastermind of this plot or as he is now known, The Second Spooner.) As my husband was cleaning up from dinner, he scraped off the plates and flipped the switch. I thought the sink was going to explode!  The sound of metal being ground against metal was so shrill that our dog was hiding under the table. When he finally turned off the power, the disposal thumped to a stop and died. Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my son surreptitiously give my daughter a “high five.” Mission accomplished. 

The spoons, which must be made out of some alien metal alloy, were once again unharmed. I believe my children specifically chose these as the murder weapons because of their unassuming size—they don’t look threatening—yet super strength. 

What was their motive, to avoid helping clean up? It’s not like they do that all that well to begin with. No, I believe they get some sadistic pleasure from killing my household appliances. About a month ago, they tried—although not so subtly—to kill the microwave by putting balls of aluminum foil filled with popcorn in it. I barely saved it from a certain death.

Living with tiny murderers isn’t easy. It means is that I have to be on high alert all the time. Since our house is already wired with nanny cams, I can easily surveille them from in or outside the house, recording their every move. I found a rough set of plans stashed under my son’s bed with a drawing of what I thought was the washing machine or maybe the dryer. Sure enough, this morning I found two pieces of bubble gum deep inside the pockets of his dirty jeans which would have surely wreaked havoc inside my dryer. Brilliant!  He could have easily feigned innocence since I would have been the one who ultimately put the jeans into the machine. “You should have checked the pockets,” he might say. But, I’m onto them now. And, criminals always slip up.

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