We went out to dinner with friends Sunday night. We had a great time visiting and laughing and discussing important things, such as amusement parks, camping, teachers, stinkbugs and wasps. After the meal, we had leftovers, and therefore the prospect of another delicious meal the following day.
But in the Common Household, you have to hire an armed guard to protect your restaurant leftovers, or they will be devoured by the locust-like inhabitants of the house. The labor market for armed guards is kind of sparse, so instead I rely on threatening messages.
This time I wrote the first threatening thing that came to my mind on the outside of the carry-out bag. For extra security, I STAPLED IT SHUT, put it in the fridge, and went to bed, with visions of Kung Pao chicken dancing in my head.
"Stinkbug breeding colony. DO NOT TOUCH"
The next morning my son was making his lunch for band camp while I was having my breakfast. He said, “Mom, have you seen what’s in the refrigerator?”
I said, “Is there something in there I need to see?” I was thinking that probably the pickle jar spilled again, this time in the refrigerator.
He said, “You had better look in there.” When my son, a man of few words, says something more than once, it means it’s important, just like in the Bible when God tells Joshua to “Be strong and courageous” not once, not twice, but three times.
Thinking of what could be the worst possible thing to find in the refrigerator, I said, “Oh, no. I hope it’s not a dead animal.” Then remembering that I did have some raw chicken in the fridge to cook tonight for dinner, I amended my statement. “I hope it’s not a dead animal that’s not supposed to be in the refrigerator.” I want to say right here that despite my less-than-stellar housework skills, I have NEVER had any unexpected dead animals in my refrigerator. Occasionally there have been furry things growing in the hummus container, but that’s living, not dead.
My son said nothing further. My curiosity got the better of me, so I said, “What IS it in the fridge?”
He said, “You have to look.” He might as well have said, “Be strong and courageous!”
Suddenly I remembered my leftovers, and I said, “Is it my stinkbug experiment?”
He said, “Yes. WHY is that IN there?”
Later, when Youngest Daughter was getting her breakfast, I came in the kitchen and she asked, “What is a stinkbug breeding colony doing in the refrigerator?” Thinking fast, trying to decide how much of the truth to tell, I decided to say, “Well, it’s a scientific experiment.” I checked that my experiment was untouched – yep, still stapled shut.
The only child who did not publicly react to the possibility of stinkbugs in the fridge was Oldest Daughter, who was out babysitting that morning. I picked her up shortly before noon and we went home. I worked for half-an-hour and then came in the kitchen for my delicious lunch of leftovers. Gasp! The bag was UNSTAPLED!
Fearing the worst, I lifted the take-out boxes from the bag. It seems that the food was not to the liking of Oldest Daughter, because it all seemed to still be there. So my experiment was successful! I now know who I need to protect my leftovers from. But I think I will need an armed guard next time.
At your abode, do you need to hire an armed guard to protect leftovers?