Trashy Dresser

I’m a single mom, which means that all of the typical “guy chores” around the house get done by yours truly. That includes taking out the trash, which in our city consists of not one but three containers: the garbage, the recycling and the yard waste. (I’m in charge of the mowing, weed-whacking and landscaping, too.)

I’d add it to my daughters’ list of Chores They Never Do Anyway, except I always forget about it, and for some reason they’re not stepping up to remind me.

So it’s up to me to do it myself — if and when I remember. Which is usually at the last minute. Or last second, really.  And it ain’t pretty.

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Trashy Dresser

Friday morning
without warning
I hear rumbling from afar.

I wake and wonder,
“Is it thunder?”
Or…a plane? A train? A car?

As it grows nearer,
it gets clearer
that the trash truck’s on my street.

That’s when I doubt
that my can’s out;
my response is oh-so fleet.

Downstairs I go,
small cans in tow,
to dump ‘em all in one big bag.

Outside I hear
noises grow near —
time’s of essence, must not lag!

Quickly I’ve
run down the drive,
dragging my big can behind.

Gravel scrunching,
loudly crunching –
Oh, the neighbors? They won’t mind.

One last swerve
and can is curbed
as trash truck screeches to a halt.

Down hop trash guys,
squinting their eyes
at some visual assault.

Seems they’re staring
‘cause I’m wearing
my old nightgown, gray and frayed —

topped by bathrobe
that has mellowed
to a semi-lilac shade —

plus my sweatpants
pulled out by chance
from the dirty laundry pile —

And on my feet?
the look’s complete
with my fluffy slipper style.

It’s not the first time
that I’ve found I’m
rushing my stuff to the street.

Somehow with this
I’m quite remiss;
remembering seems too hard a feat.

It’s no disgrace,
I now embrace
this trait, and thus my neighbors know

that in my ‘hood,
I’m always good
for a Friday morning fashion show.

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©2012 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz

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A Germ of an Idea

Still looks good to me…

You’d have to be living under a dirty dishtowel not to know that recent years have seen a slew of research debunking ye olde “Five-Second Rule” (known to some as the more stringent “Three-Second Rule”) regarding the edibility of food dropped on the floor.

Even one of my personal heroes, The Daily Show‘s Most Senior Correspondent Samantha Bee, took to shilling for Clorox Bleach years ago in an effort to disabuse the masses of their belief in this popular food safety myth.

Well, Clorox is at it again, promoting (for the public good, no doubt) the results of yet another study that’s proven that germs can infect a dropped morsel in less than five seconds. Even Gawker has deemed this San Diego State University study worthy of reportage.

So, consider me reformed. Never again will I pick up a fallen-five-seconds-ago pickle or Froot Loop® or Angus ribeye and pop it into my mouth — or back onto my unuspecting kid’s plate.

The scientists have spoken. So there’s a new rule in da house…

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A Germ of an Idea

Scientists, I hear ya –
All those warnings ‘bout bacteria
Bringing microbes by the score
To food fallen on the floor.

Yes, I see that you have tested
How fast grub will get infested,
Dropping tidbits on the tile
to examine in a while.

It appears that your inspection
Has determined that collection
Of those spreaders of infection
Happens soon after connection.

Things like nasty salmonella
That could hurt a healthy fella,
And e. coli that’s just waiting
To begin contaminating.

So you say we shouldn’t risk it
For a brownie or a biscuit
(even if it’s really yummy)
That has landed somewhere scummy.

And your warnings are quite dire
Should one drop a pacifier
And then pop it in one’s mouth
To remove the spores that sprout.

But I thought that you should know
That – as far as kitchens go –
When it comes to floor hygiene,
Mine is relatively clean.

So I’ve cooked up a solution
For reducing the confusion,
A new policy that’s firm
For insuring us ‘gainst germs.

It’s as simple as can be–
No more five seconds, nor three.
And my new food safety tool?
I call it The Two-Second Rule.

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©2012 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz

Two-Car Family

You can call me on the (juice-stained) carpet for sweeping generalizations, but it’s been my experience that in your typical suburban household where each parent has a car, Mom’s car will be the messier of the two. Throw a pet like my Daisy (right, riding shotgun) into the mix, and disorder and debris are your destiny.

I don’t think I’m off base here. Just a cursory scan of cyberspace found plenty of mothers lamenting the woeful state of their minivans.  One even had a contest that sought out the most unkempt car.

If only I had known. If I’d submitted a pic of my own slovenly sedan, I guarantee I coulda been a contender. That is, if I could find my camera…

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Two-Car Family

His:
Sleek
Spotless
Toy-less
Tot-less
Leather
Shiny
Never whiny
Quiet
Yell-less
Calm
Smell-less

Hers:
Hatch-backed
Crayon-attacked
Vinyl cracked
Baby-yakked
Not compact
Toy-stacked
Ransacked
Mud-tracked
Never intact
Brat-packed

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©2009 Carlotta Eike Stankiewicz

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(note: this post has been updated and re-blogged from its initial appearance more than a year ago.)