A week and a half.

A person can do a lot of things in a week and a half.

“What is happening right now?” I asked my son.

Then again, they can choose to not do a lot of things.

The kid was sitting on the floor of his bedroom, school computer on the lap.

“Are you … doing homework … NOW? NOW?”

It was bedtime. The very final hours of a long holiday break were dribbling through the hourglass.


Things were heating up fast. The boy needed to act.

“No, no Mom,” he said, all wide-eyed innocence. “I am just checking my computer to see if I have any homework to do.”

He waited a moment for this new information to sink in. This, surely, would be the salve needed to calm the lady down.

“WHAT?! WHAT?!” I sputtered.

Hmmm, it did not calm her down.

Moments later, the boy was in the living room, walking in circles. I am not being figurative here. The kid was literally walking in circles — that is how he looks for things. In this case, he was looking for a power cord. His computer, it seems, was dead because it hadn’t been charged ... you guessed it, in a week and a half.

A family search party was formed. My fury had not abated as I focused my energies on finding a power cord. I just took my anger on the road, griping about responsibility, the need to take better care of one’s things and various Charlie-Brown’s-teacher-level blather while checking corner outlets and junk drawers.

“MOM!” said the boy in a sudden panic. “Tell me you didn’t find a paper plate of Legos and toss them into the main Lego bin!”

“Think I am born yesterday?” I shot back, unearthing a lunch bag filled with week-and-a-half old leftovers. “I know better than to touch paper plates of Legos! Keep looking!”

We have an obscene amount of power cords in our home, and I fully admit to not knowing what even a quarter of them go to. A Chromebook or a cord to a FryDaddy I pitched in 2004, it is all the same to me.

Eventually, the boy was gone.

He had found the cord and, naturally, didn’t bother to tell anyone or call off the search.

“I found it, OK? Geesh ...” he said once discovered sitting with his computer, giving the “it was right under the couch where I left it, stop making a big deal out of this” sigh of exasperation.

“And I don’t have any homework, OK? I was right all along.”

A week and a half, and some things never change.

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Martha Petteys writes a weekly column for The Post-Star. Write to her at petteyshome@gmail.com or visit her on Facebook.


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