CSI: Small Town, USA

Yesterday, while I was off at the theater, willingly handing over my hard-earned American dollars, so that I could help boost “New Moon’s” box office standings to the third highest grossing film for an opening weekend ever (only “Spiderman” and “The Dark Night” are ahead of it now), Hubs was at home, cleaning the fish tank.

I think it was merely a strategy to help him cope with the Broncos and their inability to score enough touchdowns to be declared the winning team. (Because, do you actually know what makes a professional football team a winner? Touchdowns, people! More touchdowns than their opponent.)

Hubs still hates his Broncos today. He told me never to speak of them again. I replied, “Oh, you’ll love them before next Sunday’s game,” and he answered, “No. No I won’t. Not this time. I have no love left in my heart for the orange and blue any longer. It’s a sad, sad day. I may not go to work tomorrow.”

But I digress.

Which, clearly, is a common thing around here.

So yes, I was at the movie with the girls, and Hubs was at home with the boy, and the boy’s friend, G, scrubbing the fish tank, which was dirty enough that we…well…couldn’t really see the fish. People, we’re not proud about it. Everyone has a skeleton in their closet; ours just happened to be out in the open, where everyone could walk around and comment on it and say, “Wow! What a dirty fish tank! How many different algae forms are growing in there right now?”

We simply informed our guests that it was the boy’s science fair project, and that he was getting a head start on junior high biology class, because it’s never too early to begin preparing for the SATs and looking at colleges.

We expect Harvard to call any day, with a full ride.

And then, land sakes! I’m going to have to pack my bags and MOVE, because I’m currently planning on being the boy’s college roommate, because SOMEONE needs to cook healthy dinners for him, make sure that he takes his vitamins, do his laundry, and leave little chocolate mint candies on his freshly-fluffed pillow at night.

Do you think that Carter or Ben or Enzo or Kellen or the cute neighbor boy would do those things for my boy, if they shared a dorm room with him?

Yeah; neither do I.

But I digress.

Even more than usual. Which is, you know, UNUSUAL.

While I was zipping around the kitchen this evening, poaching salmon and making broccoli and green beans and potatoes (Ha! Will Carter and Ben and Enzo and Kellen and the cute neighbor boy offer healthy meals like THAT to the boy in college? Or will it be simply Ramen noodles, frozen burritos, and cheap draft beer?), I happened to notice a few tiny, blue rocks stuck in the drain of my kitchen sink. Naturally, this caused a red flag to go up, because, people, we have little blue rocks in our fish tank.

And then…

…I found a little blue rock on the kitchen counter, sitting next to the big coffee maker. (Which is, actually, the same coffee maker that we bought for many American dollars to steam our own milk at home and see if we could wean ourselves off of Starbucks, but low! It didn’t happen. We have a coffee maker at home for EMERGENCIES, like when Starbucks is closed. And since Starbucks is seldom — if EVER — closed, then we know that no emergencies will pop up, and that is actually a GOOD thing, because who likes an emergency thrown into their morning routine?)

I asked Hubs, “Hey, did you scrub the algae and the grime and the gunk out of the fish tank in my kitchen sink?”

And without batting an eyelash, Hubs answered, “Yes. Where else was I supposed to have scrubbed it at?”

Oh, I don’t know. The bathtub comes to mind. The laundry room comes to mind. Anywhere but MY KITCHEN SINK, WHERE I PREPARE THE SALMON AND THE POTATOES AND THE BROCCOLI AND THE GREEN BEANS!!!

Hubs didn’t see the big deal. Algae, he reasoned, was a plant life, and what, exactly, was I preparing for dinner? Plants! Broccoli! And the green beans! And the salmon, who had once swam through the algae in the stream!

Uncle Ted (you know, Uncle Ted…as in, Ted Nugent) would have just eaten the algae out of the tank, instead of rinsing it down the kitchen sink, and Hubs admires Uncle Ted.

We had a stand-off in the kitchen, Hubs and I. He stared into my eyes, with a quirky smile, daring me (Yes, daring me!) to officially remove him from all future tank cleaning endeavors. I debated it, people. I came close. I stared back into Hubs’ eyes, and then I said, “It’s fine. Use the sink. I’ll just spend an hour sterilizing it. You can always clean the fish tank there. I love you.”

And that, people, was NOT what Hubs had wanted to hear. I think that Hubs had fully planned his tank cleaning afternoon out (premeditated it, if you will), so that it would be his LAST afternoon EVER of scrubbing the tank. I think that he deliberately planted the little blue aquarium rocks in strategic places, so that my CSI team would discover them. I think that Hubs was fully prepared to be brought in for questioning, taken to trial, found guilty, and sentenced to a life of never having to clean the fish tank again. Ever.

Sometimes, justice simply works backwards.

And I still love Hubs, who doesn’t love the Broncos any longer.

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