Kayli, all decked out in her cute-as-a-button soccer gear runs outside to report, “The hot dogs smell gross!!”
I step inside, sniff deeply (and in retrospect kind of stupidly) and realize that why yes, yes they do smell gross. Like gas leak gross. Jason is still an hour or so away. Which makes me the ADULT at home.
So I ask my neighbors to check things out for us.
They promptly tell us to step away from the house. We call the gas company and they, too, tell us to step away from the house. They also add no hanging up the phone, starting our car, using our cell phones or doing anything else that could result in a spark. And that someone would be right over to “check things out.”
Hours and hours and hours later we’ve missed soccer. It’s beyond bedtime for all of us. The kids had a great time playing with their friends and ask if they could “do it all again tomorrow.” And importantly, we’re the proud owners of a brand new regulator. Hooray!
Nowhere near enough hours later…
Two: 11:30 AM
Lovely AAA Lady: Ma’am, I’m sorry. I can’t quite hear you.
Me: I let my kids mumblemumblemumble play in the car mumblemumble this morning and now my car won’t start. mumble It’s making a click-clock-clickety-clock sound.
LAAAL: Just to make sure that I understand, you let your kids play in the car and now the car won’t start but is making a clicking sound?
My Kids: General loudness and mayhem ensues. Totally and completely proving that I am most definitely not watching them. Although good news! They’re not in the car! mumblemumble
LAAAL: Ma’am, this happens all the time!
Me: It does?
LAAAL: Yes, it does. Now ma’am, do you have AAA?
Me: I don’t know.
My kids: Same as above. Point proven. Above and beyond.
LAAAL: Question asking-clicking-typing-but definitely NOT click-clock-clickety-clocking. Yes, yes you do have AAA.
All of us: Thankful halleluyah-style that there is a Jason who knows about clicking sounds and who thinks of things like AAA for his wife who lets her kids play in the car and, for the record, has made it through thirty-some-odd years blissfully unaware of clicking sounds.
LAAAL: Asking all sorts of questions that we all wish Jason was here to answer. Make? Model? Color? (Don’t worry, I knew that one.) Ma’am, someone will be there within 45 minutes to fix the clicking sound.
Me: Hmm, it’s just that I wanted to go meet my 1st grader for lunch today. mumblemumble And she’s expecting us. I don’t want to just not show up. We were on our way to McDonalds to pick up lunch when, you know, the car wouldn’t start. It was just clicking. (I can be taught.) Can the magical fix-it guy come after lunch? mumble
LAAAL: Still nice and patient and well, lovely. Ma’am, just call us after lunch.
And now we are the proud new owners of a new regulator and a car battery. Hooray!
And Three: *Crickets Chirping*
A week later we’re outside on an impossibly golden October afternoon. The kids are “raking” leaves. I use that term oh-so-very-loosely. And on my mind? Is what’s next? Is that rake too sharp? The steps too slippery? That hiding spot too good?
Why so negative you ask? Isn’t it obvious? Things tend to happen in threes. Three kids, three goods, three bads, three deaths, three births. Things. Come. In. Threes. And while I’m still reeling in the awful, scary possibilities and whatifs of the past week, I’m peaking around the corner waiting for that third “thing” to show up and make me give. I’ll let you know when it does.
Careful planner, predictor and see-er of what’s coming soon? Um, clearly not. (See above.)
More like, knock on wood (“touchwood” to some of you) doing, tfootfootfoo saying, sidewalk-crack side-stepping, superstitious. I’ve collected my superstitions along the years from lovely friends and acquaintances, books, movies and TV shows. Anywhere, really. And I hold onto them. Fiercely.
I pull my earlobe when I sneeze. I don’t even know why I do that one. I never (ever!) split paths when walking with a loved one. I also never (ever!) pass a knife hand-to-hand. My college roommate (Hi Nina!) taught me that both of those acts would cause rifts or fights. Salt over the shoulder, walk around the ladder, hooray for four leaf clovers and for the love of God, careful around a mirror!
Mmhmm, turns out I’m superstitious. These little things that I do are habit and routine, for sure. But I kind of like them. They’re mine, kooky quirks and all.
So now you know. I believe that things happen in threes. I absentmindedly do things like knocking on wood and pulling my earlobe. And yes, I let my kids play in the car. Tfootfootfoo.
Your turn. Superstitions? Things that come in threes? General kookiness? Ready, set, go!