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Gwen: This must be my third because 9 x 2 is 7.
Me: 9 x 2 is not 7!
Gwen: I mean 9 minus 2 is 7! I have multiplication on the brain.

Many more random numbers were thrown about with absolutely no rhyme or reason. It was entertaining but I’m with Heath. “Good thing it’s a free education! If I had to pay for that I would be mad.”

We had gone out to Burger King for dinner in order to keep the mess of food prep and cleanup as someone else’s responsibility. After all, we are not feeding 15 people tomorrow – on quadruple count it’s actually 13. For some reason Heath and I were under the assumption that we were hosting Thanksgiving dinner for 15. We didn’t realize our mistake until we tried to lay out the tables. Maybe you had to be there. We laughed. Maybe it’s not a public education problem as much as an unfortunate family trait. We can’t count!

Burger King was Parker’s idea and I lobbied hard for him to get his way. I thought it sounded really good compared to the alternative of going to a fancy restaurant for fancy overpriced burgers. I just wanted my go to comfort food.

Not that many years ago I would tell Heath to bring home dinner on the really stressful days. Something about the burgers and fries calmed me. The massive trough of Diet Coke I put my straw in may have had something to do with the calming effects too. I used to crave Burger King after Parker was born. The fries were fried in some sort of addictive chemical. They were soooo good!

Lately it’s been disappointing when we go out to cheap fast food places. Have my tastes really matured that much? I don’t know. All I know is that the produce here is limp, sad, and soggy. I’m ready to start asking for no tomatoes along with the rest of the picky members of my family because the tomatoes taste like they were fished from the dumpster out back.

Gavin had chosen not to join us for dinner. He had been playing Madden football for hours and couldn’t possibly step away from the hundredth game he was on. I thought Heath gave up on him too soon. I like that two of our kids are old enough to be left home alone to fend for themselves. I just don’t like that they choose to stay home when they don’t like what the rest of us want for dinner.

Heath was all love and logic about it. Parker and Gwen kept saying it was his loss. As I munched on lukewarm fries definitely not fried with any sort of addictive chemical, I couldn’t help but think he wasn’t missing much. My Diet Coke tasted weak and my tomato was described earlier. As soon as we were done, Heath got up and said he didn’t ever want to stay long anyway. I kind of agree. I have noticed that fast food joints tend to attract the kind of people you run into at government run establishments like the DMV. It didn’t use to be that way. Now I always feel oddly dressed up and out of place eating my lamp warmed meal.

Maybe it’s a Diet Coke thing. It used to be a special treat. Now we seem to buy it as often as we buy milk. And we buy a lot of milk. Gavin texted a request on his way home from school today.

Bring home three cans of diet soda
please

Since I had left my phone at home while Heath and I ran some errands I saw the please last and felt a little bad. Good thing nothing crazy had happened. I guess he needs the cans for his technology class. They are building boats or something and the teacher said that diet soda is less sticky than regular soda. Heath and I quickly drank a can each of Diet Coke. One more can to empty for our son’s education. I think we can handle it.

It’s possible I have become so accustomed to good Diet Coke, by drinking it canned and bottled, that I no longer like the weak stuff sold at fast food franchises. They put too much ice in it anyway.

On the way home tonight Gwen asked, “How does Bartell Drugs make enough money? They sell cheap stuff!” It’s hard to say what her definition of cheap is. Monetarily or quality wise? I know their Diet Coke bottles are good. If you are struggling with gift ideas for me, I would take a 6 pack of Diet Coke bottles under the tree. Maybe three, because 9 x 2 is 7.

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