It’s just one darned thing after the other

Are We There Yet?

Lori Clinch

I ran toward the kitchen not long ago, tilting at full speed. My heart was racing, my brow was sweating, and as I rounded the corner, I breathed a sigh of relief. Just as I was about to do whatever it was that I was about to do, all thought processes left me.

I knew that I had something to do there and that it probably was crucial that it was done. I’d just gosh-darned wished that I could have remembered what it was.

Life ain’t easy for a gal such as myself. Although I pay attention to detail and live a purpose-driven life, it would seem that more oftentimes than not, I arrive at the bottom of the stairs and can’t recollect why I’ve come.

I’m great at paperwork, fast at grocery shopping, and can make a hundred different things with a simple pound of hamburger. In fact, I feel it bears mentioning that I am currently the only staff member in the house-wide organization who has the ability and agility to put a fresh roll of toilet paper on the spindle.

Still, I oftentimes stand at the end of the hallway and wonder to myself where it is that I was going and why am I holding a bowl.

Take last Thursday for instance. Thursday was to be a “day off.” The taxes were sort of done, the milk containers were full, and best of all, there would be no ticket-taking sporting events on the agenda for the next 24 hours.

I’d imagined I’d get up early and get a jump-start on the day. Perhaps I could get the laundry done, clean the house and coordinate my closet. I could vacuum the rugs, alphabetize my recipe box and have enough time left over to re-upholster the kitchen chairs.

Looking back, I suppose I never should have stretched as I was getting out of bed. Stretching only causes one to look up, and while one is looking up, one tends to notice cobwebs. And since my Thursday wasn’t overrun with errands and commitments, it was as good a day as any to knock those bad boys down.

Heaven forbid I should fetch a broom in bare feet. So I ventured off to grab my slippers and make certain that my pups remained comfy on the journey to the broom closet.

Who knew one’s shoe shelves could be in such disarray? Although we weren’t boarding Noah’s Ark, surely it would only take a minute or so to place my footwear in groups of two. I’d just started organizing when I recalled something I’d read in a magazine that involved shoe shelves and doilies.

How cute would that be? And what with a day off and all …

Next thing I knew, I was off to find the magazine with a picture of the cute darn shelves when it dawned on me that I’d not yet had my morning coffee. Well, we all know that nothing stimulates creativity like a good morning cup of joe.

I made my way to the coffeepot in short order only to discover that some ignoramus had spilled coffee grounds all over the cupboard. I went to the closet to retrieve the vacuum and saw that no one, but no one, had hung up a coat for more than a month.

Well, if a woman such as myself doesn’t hang up the coats when the opportunity presents itself, then what is the world of organization coming to? I was making a mental note to give my family a coat-hanging demonstration when I noticed that there wasn’t a gosh-darned hanger in sight. I headed to the kids’ closets to get hangers, and it was then that I saw the Monopoly game spread out all over the living room floor.

“Who,” I asked myself, “leaves a Monopoly game strewn all over the floor?” I was left with little or no choice but to pick up the game before I tripped on the board and took a ride on the Reading. As long as I was making the journey, I might as well grab ALL of the toys, shoes and children’s garb that littered the way. Why not tidy their bedrooms while I’m there, scrub the walls, throw in the towel, and while I’m tossing towels, why not take a few minutes to wipe down the washing machine?

Next thing I knew, I was running into the laundry room, heart racing and sweat on my brow. I was holding a magazine, a pile of hangers, the deed to Park Place and wondering why I’d come. I leaned into the washer and looked toward the heavens in desperation.

It was then that I noticed the cobwebs that had all but taken over the ceiling. Since I had a day off, I’d better take a minute and knock those down.

All I needed was a broom.

Lori Clinch is the mother of four sons and the author of the book “Are We There Yet?” Her e-mail address is