Monday, April 05, 2010

A Little Jumpy

When I was a kid living in Syracuse, New York, my parents bought a small home in a new subdivision. We were one of the first families in the neighborhood, so there were still several vacant home lots and fields and dirt lawns to explore as we waited for the neighborhood to develop and for the grass to grow in.

My sister and I would go outside in the morning and play in mud puddles and stomp around in the dirt and catch toads and throw dirt at each other and get in huge fights and then repeat the entire process throughout the day. It was awesome.

At some point, we really got into the toads...and began to think of them as our pets, and created little ecosystems for them in the window wells that surrounded our basement windows. We'd create whole toad colonies in there and check up on them and feed them and at some point probably threw them at each other, got in huge fights and repeated the entire process throughout the day. I'm kidding...although our track record with pets up to that point was not a good one.

There was the time we played hide-and-seek with our pet guinea pig (my sister hid him in the fridge...and he was thankfully okay and munching on some lettuce when I thought to look in there to find him.) There was another time that we played "lion in a cage" by lifting the floor register for our furnace and putting our pet kitten inside. The kitten was also okay...and I'm sure enjoyed the new home our parents found for it immensely. So it was not completely out of character for us to bring the "pet" toads into the house, play with them, and in moving them back outside, completely lose track of one of them.

Hey...it happens.

Not wanting to be in trouble for losing a toad in the house, we decided that the best course of action would be not mentioning this to my mom. And we considered ourselves extra-lucky that my dad was out of town on a business trip. So we went to bed that night thinking that we would totally wake up early and find the toad and get him outside before our mom even knew.

The one part of our plan that we did not count on, however, was that our mom was going to spend the night watching a horror movie on television. In our sparsely-populated neighborhood and with my dad out of town and us asleep in bed, she settled in and began watching the 1972 classic horror movie, Frogs (Tagline: "When nature strikes back!"). You read that right. The 70s found people bravely wearing mint-green leisure suits while dancing the funky chicken and swinging with their neighbors, but seemingly terrified by small and innocuous amphibians. (There must have been something in those jell-o molds.)

I guess that as "nature was in the process of striking back" during the movie that night, our pet toad hopped out from underneath the couch in the family room and almost gave my mother a heart attack. Or at least caused her to wet her polyester bell bottoms.

19 comments:

Dilettard07 said...

That is rather apropos if she indeed wet herself. After all, how many times did you pick up a toad only to have it wet itself on you?

Brutalism said...

Tard - Good point. It's what toads and drunks I met in bars had in common...

Moooooog35 said...

I suppose that explains those genital warts.

Gross.

Straight Guy said...

Wow. My brother and I made the same mistake with a snake. No one slept for a while, but we never found it. Soiled polyester was a definite possibility.

Brutalism said...

Moooooog - I suppose it does (resigned sigh)

Straight Guy - I would never sleep again if I knew a snake was loose in my house. Which is why my husband is not allowed to go commando. (Thanks...I'll be here all week.)

ShutUpandRun said...

If there is a god, he so meant for you guys to lose the toad in the house. Why else would your mom have been watching that frog flick? Too much coincidence. One time my sister in law left her hamster in the car in 90 degree heat while the family went into Kings Dominion for the day. Not such a happy ending.

Brutalism said...

SU&R -- I know, right? First of all, a horror movie about Frogs? Secondly...it happens to be playing on TV that very night?

That is a very sad story about the hamster. Made sadder still by the fact that Richard Gere's sphincter is even warmer than 90 degrees. Poor hamsters.

dilettante07 said...

What a proud day! Our little Brutalism has finally found a way to work in a Richard Gere sphincter reference! It seems like only yesterday we were reading your first post on swinging.

Brutalism said...

Tante - It is kind of the perfect storm of blog post fodder -- what with swinging, hamsters and Richard Gere's sphincter all being lobbed up for me. (Not literally, of course...)

(Not for nothing...my verification word is "acilipoo" which sounds like a combination of an Acela train and poop. As in "I emptied my bowels very quickly...it was an acilipoo." Looks like I'm off to Urban Dictionary...)

ShutUpandRun said...

Wow, I never thought about Richard Gere's anus and the temp of it. You are SO right!! Very deep insights.

dilettante07 said...

SU&R--you must have a lot of time on your hands, because that's pretty much all I think about. If one is not singularly focused on Mr. Gere's bunghole, what does one do with oneself?

Love the acilipoo--you'll get my thumbs up.

middle child said...

First sentence of the 2nd to last paragraph - I actually laughed OUT LOUD knowing what was coming.

Jason the Absurdist said...

I think you and your sister deserve royalties for the latest invention that threatens our collective life-savings, again: 3D TV. This sure seems like prior art to me.

You need a lawyer. And I don't mean some famous douche who starts off with "I'm not a lawyer, but I played one on TV" like Alberto Gonzales and Karl Rove.

Can I be your agent?

Miss Spoken said...

Ooooh, I like the cat in a cage idea.

My brother once tried to teach our hamster how to swim ... in the fish tank. He's kinda stupid.

Ann's Rants said...

This is so funny. I love the crazy crap kids do.

Your poor mother.

Brutalism said...

Tante - acilipoo - now part of the lexicon

Middle Child - My mom told this story for years and I never believed there was such a movie. Fortunately one can now IMDB (a verb) such things.

J the A - Nice thinking. I will get rich off the Great Frog Debacle of 1976. Then I can hob nob with Oprah.

Miss Spoken - Is that the prison brother? That's not why he went to prison, is it?

Ann's Rants - I know. I love that we thought she would not find out. I mean, we certainly did not think she'd find out in that way, but really?

Dilettard07 said...

OK, people, time for your history lesson of the day, and pay attention.

On behalf of the Gerbil Anti-Defamation League, I would like to state for the record that the holocaust unleashed by Herr Gere was indeed against gerbils, and not hamsters as stated here.

You may think that I am nitpicking, but in order for us to move forward in our collective human endeavors, we must remember the past, and do so accurately. For if we forget the truth, the lies will creep back into our collective conscious. Should that happen, who knows what tiny creature will be someone's next victim.

(And for the record, the hamster genocide was carried out by Kemal Attaturk.)

One of The Guys said...

This is funny and almost hard to believe the coincidence! I would done more than wet my pants.

Brutalism said...

One of the Guys - I would have moved, because it would have indicated to me that the plagues had arrived.