I went into a big long stinkin’ deal about how and why I wrote this story over at my blog, if you’re interested. But it’s mostly writer stuff, so don’t read it if you don’t want the writer stuff.
But now, presenting…
My Mom Ate My Homework
by De Kenyon
This story was inspired by Ray’s recent testing of the “how much can I get away with” thing with regards to leaving her crap all over the house and putting off cleaning it up as long as possible. And homework. Dawdling for hours over her homework. I was feeling kinda nutso about having to discipline her, too. Like–you’ve been through all this before, and I thought we’d worked it out already kind of thing. But I know, as Ray develops mentally, that this is exactly what I have to expect, and should be worried about if I don’t see: it means she’s approaching situations differently, as she tries out new ideas.
To make a long story short, it’s better. And she did enjoy the story, bouncing and yelling and laughing and more. But she was very disturbed about a few details that I copied from our lives. She could accept that the main characters weren’t us…but the mention of her green bat socks. That threw her.
We agreed that Lee should never give me a vacuum cleaner.
Aya’s mom just told her to pick up her stuff for the 1,001th time…she was almost going to pick it up for reals, but then her mom gets turned into a cleanicidal vacuum cyborg. And now Aya’s almost late for school…
Aya held the big box of Fruit Loops in one hand and The Best Cereal Bowl Ever in her other hand, ready to pour. The Best Cereal Bowl Ever had two sides: one side for the crunchy and delicious cereal, and the other side for the cold and delicious milk, so you could scoop out a scoop of cereal, dunk it in the milk, and eat it at the moment of best coldness and crunchiness.
Unfortunately, Aya’s mom chose exactly that moment to stomp up to the table so hard she made Aya’s spoon rattle. “If I’ve told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times!” Aya’s mom yelled. “Pick up your trash!”
Aya looked around the kitchen. Okay, so most of the table was stacked with her folded laundry, and her homework was all over the floor under the table where she’d been working on it last night while Mom cooked, and maaaaaybe she’d left a few candy wrappers under her pillow, and okay, so her computer desk had two soda cans and a pile of tissues on it, and, um, okay. But she was seriously hungry.
“Can’t I wait until after I eat breakfast?” she asked.
“No!” her mom yelled. “I told you to clean yesterday morning, and you didn’t. And then I told you to clean after you got home from school yesterday, and you didn’t. And I told you to clean before you went to bed last night, and you didn’t. And today is my birthday, and you know what’s the worst birthday present ever? Having to clean up your daughter’s mess. So now I don’t care if you starve at school today—pick up your traaaaaash!!!”
Mom yelled so loud that Aya’s hair streamed out behind her and her mother’s coffee-smelling spit splattered onto her face. Mom was sogross. After a few seconds of glaring at her, Mom stomped into the living room, saying something mean-sounding under her breath.
Aya sighed, put the cereal box down, and wiped her face with a napkin. “That makes it a thousand and one times.” She picked up an armful of her clothes and started carrying them back to her room.
From the living room, Mom’s new vacuum cleaner started running. Dad had bought it for her birthday, so she wouldn’t have to vacuum anymore: it was a self-driving vacuum cleaner that would vacuum the carpet and even wash the kitchen floor to pick up any mess from spilled food.
Aya was about to shove all her clothes in her top drawer when suddenly she heard her mother scream, “Help, Aya!”
Aya dropped her clothes on the floor, jumped over her toys and books and dirty clothes, ran down the hallway, and jumped down the two stairs into the living room.
Mom wrestled with her new vacuum cleaner, a loud, gray machine that had all kinds of tubes and cords coming out of it that wrapped around her arms and legs. The back end of the machine spat out black, stinky smoke that covered the ceiling and made Aya cough.
Mom held a pair of scissors that she used to stab the machine, but the cords just wrapped tighter.
The machine—it had to be Mom’s new vacuum cleaner—suddenly sucked down Mom’s arm with the scissors, while an electrical cord climbed up her arm and plugged itself into her nostril.