Saturday, October 29, 2011
your self-esteem boost for the weekend
When we first moved into this house, we noted that the previous owners had added a few design flourishes which were a little bit, shall we say, rococo for our tastes. Some of them came down immediately--the full wall mirrors in several areas, the gold-painted mirror flanked by a roulade and cherub motif in the half bathroom. But some of the others, like the gold (colored) doorknobs on the French doors throughout, while not quite my taste, seemed innocuous and certainly functional enough.
The problem with these doorknobs, I've found, is that I keep getting hooked on them. Not anyone else, just me. Everyone else in this house is either tall enough or short enough to avoid this particular problem, but at my height (5'2" and a half--and if you don't think that half inch is important, you much be much taller than 5'2") these doorknobs all over the house are right at waist height. Belt loop height, to be exact. I keep getting hooked on these doorknobs. And you would think that it's easy enough to unloop oneself, but look at that doorknob a little closer. The loop is a little bit spiralled, like a nautilus. Like one of those barbed fishooks. And once you get hooked, it's actually unusually difficult to extricate yourself.
Yesterday, I went to Costco to do some grocery shopping. We had a nice time in Orlando, but when we came home the food situation in the larder was a little bare-bones, and breakfast that morning was somewhat thin, which inexplicably panicked the kids. (Under normal circumstances I don't think they'd have any trouble with a breakfast of cereal and milk, but the fact that that's all there was to eat suddenly had them eyeing the USDA food pyramid and acting like we were the Joads in Dust Bowl Americana or some such thing.) So anyway, I went to Costco and stocked up on, whatever, a coffin-sized flat of strawberries, cinder-block sized bricks of cold cuts, the like--and headed back to the house to stick the perishables in the fridge before heading out again to pick up the kids from school.
Only, as usual, I got hooked on the doorknob. One of my back belt loops. And I had turned the home security alarm on before I'd left for the store, so now that was counting down the 40 seconds or however much time I had to punch in my code until the alarm went off. I calmly laid down my drum of peanut butter and body-bag-sized sack of raisins and went about calmly disentangling myself, only to grow increasingly less calm as the second continued to tick by and I was still caught on the spiral of the doorknob hook. Looking at it straight on, it seems like it should be easy enough, but looking at it from above and behind, for some reason I couldn't get my belt loop out.
The forty seconds elapsed, and now the external security alarm started to go off with a loud whoop whoop whoop sound which, in theory, would bring the police (or at the very least, a local citizen militia) running to help defend the old homestead. I began to panic. I had to turn off that alarm, but the security pad was at least ten feet away on the far wall of the kitchen. Plan A, the straightforward plan, was not working, so I thought: my pants. If I can't get my pants out of the doorknob, I had to take off my pants instead.
So I took off my shoes. I undid my top pants button and unzipped the fly. As I started to shimmy out of my pants it occurred to me that if someone did show up to investigate the alarm, what they'd find would be a pair of beige corduroys hanging from my kitchen door, and me, pantsless, standing in a scattered pile of bulk pistachio nuts, BUT NEVER MIND ABOUT THAT NOW, JUST TURN OFF THE ALARM, DUMBASS.
It took a little while longer to realize that it's actually pretty difficult to take off your pants if you can't pull your pants down--the pants were still hooked on the doorknob at waist-level, remember--when suddenly, I was free. Free! I KNOW WHY THE CAGED BIRD SINGS, FUCKERS! What happened eventually was that the beltloop broke. Thank you, Gap Incorporated, for your shoddy tailoring. I hurriedly punched in the security code, stopped the alarm, and waited for the security company to call and make sure that I was OK, just like in all those commercials where the dark-clothed, stocking capped burglar (in broad daylight, like, nice camoflage job, guy) inexplicably tries to break into that house in where the mom and her daughter are baking cookies or whatnot else wholesome and good.
The security company never checked in, by the way. And while, yes, there was no real emergency, it was just me, my pants, and an over-designed doorknob, for all they know, I COULD BE DEAD. Whether it's a good thing or a bad thing that no one in this densely populated neighborhood came around to witness my shame, I can't quite decide yet.