Despite the dishes that needed to cleaned and put away, the kitchen floor that needed to be mopped, the laundry that needed to be dried and folded, the carpets that needed to be vacuumed and the bathrooms that needed to be made presentable in case the neighbors showed up, I actually took a few hours for myself this week.
In fact, I even put off a trip to the grocery store, opting instead to have a pizza delivered to satisfy our teenage son’s bottomless stomach just so l could be totally free to concentrate on the really big question of the day – is Curious George a monkey or an ape?
I hesitate to say which side of the debate I come down on. After all, I’m a journalist. We’re supposed to keep our opinions on issues of public importance to ourselves. It has to do with maintaining journalistic credibility, a cornerstone of the profession.
For example, if I were free to join a group dedicated to convincing others that George is an ape because he has no tail, would you trust me to fairly represent the arguments of those who accept him as a monkey because that’s how he’s referred to in the books?
Whether Curious George is an ape or a monkey is probably a question best left to primate experts, or better yet, “The Man in the Yellow Hat.” But that didn’t stop the debate from spilling over into my Facebook feed, giving me an excuse (not that I necessarily need one) to overlook household chores.
I welcomed the respite. That’s because my wife and I seem to have no down time. Take a typical week at our house. We not only toil at our jobs, but we also make sure the kids get to school on time, and that they go to marching band practice, theater and choir rehearsals, girl scouts, dance classes, piano lessons, orthodontist appointments and football games.
All four of us seem to go in all sorts of directions at once and I haven’t even mentioned our pets.
Our cat Skitty and dog Rodney had their annual veterinarian appointments this week. They each suffered various indignities, the major one involving Skitty and her Pet Taxi, the carrier we use to transport her. I spent way too much time trying to trick her into getting into it. Eventually, I lost patience and had to risk her claws by simply stuffing her inside it. She meowed in protest the whole way to the vet’s office and back.
At least I didn’t have to cram Rodney into one of those things. Dogs are generally too big to carry around like a piece of luggage.
In my mind, those two trips to the vet plus all our other obligations equaled a break when I found myself alone this week.
The only thing is, I’m not sure what I’m going to tell my wife when she asks why I haven’t gotten the hammer and drill out to install the new shelves our daughter wants mounted on the wall above her dresser.
“Well, you see honey. There was this thing about Curious George on Facebook ….”
Even “The Man in the Yellow Hat” wouldn’t buy that.