I bet you read that title and thought, Awesome. Another post about the ever-important quest for Negative Crap FlowTM. It's true that NCF is up there among my Life's Imperatives, but lately it seems lofty and elusive. My wife and I were never the most hard-core mopsmiths before the kids arrived, but lately we've been burning whatever energy we have just to ward off squalor.
Culprit One is TwoBert, who at 16 months has become a full-fledged Crap Removal Machine. And not in a good way. TwoBert cocks a suspicious eye at storage. He can commonly be seen perched over a drawer or toy bin and meticulously splaying its contents, one by one, wherever there is free floor space. Because things must be out. Where they can be seen. And crushed. By Daddy's stumbling, naked feet.
This is clearly an attempt to exact retribution. "You might make me sleep in this cage, old man, but when I summon you at 3:30am, you shall trip on an ill-placed baby thing. And I shall laugh."
Culprit Two is Robert, who takes an entirely different tack when it comes to blocking foot traffic: the construction site. When he first went nuts for Bob the Builder and This Old House, he began forming his toys into large fences that bisected the living room. Then he discovered twine and Scotch tape, and we found a whole new world of knots and adhesives. Then came the gift he has cherished more than any other: A roll of CAUTION tape from the DIY store. Now these little subdivisions are as lifelike as ever, especially because they're large and annoying and absolutely nothing goes on inside them.
Each night I come home to an entirely new detour de force, and my first job is to unravel hitches and bends and quadruple-underhand-bowlines on a bight that would make Baden-Powell eat his neckerchief. It is quite plausible to me now that Houdini's escapist training involved merely coming home from work and untying shit for two hours.
So friends, if we haven't had you over in a while, it's not your fault. We love you, and we look forward to seeing you soon -- perhaps after we can reclaim the dining table.