Friday, March 7, 2008

Last night at dinner the Little Ditchman refused to clean her plate. Actually, she refused to eat most everything that was on it, for some reason. We have her trained to ask, "May I be dismissed pleased?" when she's done so she doesn't just slide down and roll around under the dining room table while everyone's still eating. Anyway, she asked to be dismissed to which Mom and Dad simultaneously replied, "No!" She cried and whined, wearing us down at the end of the day -when she knows full well we're already worn down past the tread- and yelled "I wanna be dismissed please!" Mom said, "Eat one more green bean and then you can be dismissed."

The Little Ditchman immediately grabbed one bean, jammed it in her mouth, made a face, and climbed down off her chair.

She's not even two years old yet! I was amazed, since I thought this was five-year-old behavior. This kid understands everything you say, notices everything going on around her, and fills her empty memory with it all. Mrs. Ditchman, less impressed. "I'm with her all day," she commented. She talks like a two-year-old, so it's easy to assume she doesn't know much. (Not my wife, the child.)

And yesterday, the little one commented out of nowhere from the back seat, "Daddy loves tools!" We don't know where she got this. We're not even sure she knows what "tools" are, exactly.

Who knows what else she's got in the little person brain of hers. Probably best to keep a better eye on myself. I said "damn" the other day, only to have it repeated back to me by the toddler. (Whoops.) And another thing, kid, I don't necessarily love tools. I just have a lot of them because of the job. Now shut up and go potty train yourself.

Speaking of "damn" and "tools", this work week is finally coming to a close. The Big Commercial Job is mostly behind us, and we're just waiting on the Dreaded Final Inspection. I'm losing sleep over this because the architect drew up the plans with a two foot front overhang on one section and it's clearly been built at three feet. But I didn't have a choice! The post would have been on the fence line! The inspector is the type of guy who noticed last week that the middle hole was an inch off. And then there's the bureaucrats of the city building and planning departments sending us bills for all those fire inspections we ordered for Roberto's Taco Shop. Now I like mexican food, but we've never done any work with any "Roberto's Taco Shop". I don't believe I've ever even eaten at any "Roberto's Taco Shop", but try and tell that to the people behind the desk under the fluorescent lights. It's torture. "This is your receipt... And this is my receipt for your receipt." Administrative officials really are like terrorists: False sense of power and authority, inability to hear the other side of the issue, their paperwork as effective of a weapon as a a dirty bomb. And as messy. "Mistake? Heh, heh. We don't make mistakes." At least with bureaucrats and paperwork, people don't die. (Just people's dignity.)

So we're waiting on the final inspection. I'm holding my breath. It may come today and it may come next week -since they're closed every alternate Friday, and Jeebus knows what Friday this is. I'm sure there's another Brazil reference for that one. Brazil is one of the greatest films ever made, by the way. Brilliant. Prophetic. Hilarious. Depressing. There's not a government building in the world that I haven't walked into where lines of dialogue from the film haven't echoed in my head. I'd tell you the whole story of pulling the permits for this patio cover at the retirement community, but it'd be easier if you just netflixed Brazil. It's the story of my life. (Before I got married and lived happily ever after.)

"They've gone back to metric without telling us!"

Tell you what: we're closed this Friday, too. Have a nice weekend!