Thursday, July 01, 2010

Making Memories

Yesterday I was seized by the unnatural (for me) desire to take the slipcovers off the living room couch and armchair and shake them out, in order to rid them of all the tiny bits of I-know-not-what that tends to accumulate under the seat cushions.

It's frightening, I know. But these fits of domesticity will happen; and, having found that the best thing to do is to go with them until my accustomed slovenliness returns, I obeyed the impulse and gave the slipcovers a good shaking outside on the back deck.

Theo happened to walk into the living room just as I was putting the slipcovers back on the furniture.

"Oh!" he said. "Has someone thrown up?"

If only punctuation and font could convey to you, dear readers, the tone in which that question was asked. It was a tone usually reserved for "Is it time to get the Christmas tree?" or "Isn't it that time of year we make the hamantaschen?"

Yes, the vomit rituals in this family - the ginger ale, the saltines, the cleaning of the slipcovers - are so entrenched into our collective experience that my children (apparently) look back on them fondly; much the way other children - children, let's say, who have grown up in less puke-prone households - look back on summer vacations at the beach or visits to Grammy's house. In our home, vomit on the couch is a Norman Rockwell moment.

I can imagine my offspring at family gatherings future, reminiscing about their childhoods together: "Hey, remember when Brian ate too much of the cherry pie? That was so gross!" and "Remember when Mom had to cut Rachel out of her pajama top, because she didn't want to get the puke in her hair?"

I don't know where I went wrong...


Someone from the Department of Health and Human Services was reading this refrigerator post today - should I be worried?


  1. I can only dream of having such wonderful, fond, wholesomely disgusting memories when my kids get older.

  2. I don't have slipcovers so I would have to burn the couch. I suppose I would learn quickly!

  3. Our sofa is leather, so when a child starts to get sick, we put her there. Leather is SO EASY to clean if it gets messy.

    Several months ago, a visiting child started throwing up, so we put her on the sofa with a big bowl and some towels. When her mother arrived to get her, she was horrified that we'd put her child on the leather sofa and worried that her child had made a mess on it. Once we explained that it was Standard Operating Procedure for us, she totally got it.

  4. @Jen on the Edge - You know, your comment gives the phrase "I'm into leather" a whole new meaning.

  5. Oh this cracks me up! And makes me feel better about our "Issues"...which include "who peed the bed?"

  6. AnonymousJuly 02, 2010

    This post made me love you so very much.

  7. Ever since we've had children we only buy cars with leather seats. Our oldest son threw up every 3 hours or 200 miles, whichever came first.