I remember being a kid and waking up early to listen to the radio to hear if my school was on the list of delayed starts or closures, and how I would let out a little shrill when I heard my district because it meant I got a day of PJs, movies, sledding and hot cocoa.
As an adult, when I get that text, email and automated phone call from the district superintendent notifying me that school will be delayed or – gulp – closed for the day, I let out a completely different type of shrill.
And so, Mikey had a snow day… and then a two-hour delay the next day, which piggybacked on a three-day weekend. Needless to say I was all tapped out of fun and excitement. As such, he had a lot of screen time.
Mikey started watching some family on YouTube that likes to do trick shots and come up with competitions and other shenanigans around the house. The family is wholesome enough and it’s kind of cool watching my 5-year-old take away ideas that he wants to try at home.
Or at least it was… Now it’s a bit much.
Let’s start with bottle flips.
There’s some kid who is probably around 6 years old who can land bottle flips like a boss. I don’t want to know how many hours of his life he’s spent practicing. Maybe he’s just a prodigy. Either way, he can flip a bottle to land right-side-up OR on its cap. The latter is called a cap flip.
Mikey wishes to be better than this kid. Seeing as there are worse things he could be doing, we fully support this. Also, his quest to become the best bottle-flipper in the U.S. keeps him entertained for hours.
It also provides a background symphony of “thumps” on an endless loop. Just the other night my husband and I were trying to have a conversation while making dinner.
“So, (thump) I was talking to my co-worker and (thump) he said we could reconcile (thump) um, that one account and (thump) uh… What was I… Oh, we could (thump)…” Mike sighed. “Never mind (thump). We’ll talk later.”
Then there’s the challenge of landing a ping pong ball into a cup. Or bouncing it off every-other step and landing it in a mug at the bottom of the stairs. Or shooting it through a hoop and having it bounce off the wall then the floor then over a stuffy and swirling around a vase several times before finally sinking in…
Looking back at my college years, it seems we were really setting the bar low with plain old beer pong.
Anyway, as a result of the great ping pong challenge, the Crocco household is left dodging the small, seemingly weightless balls left and right. Making dinner, one crashes into the spices I have on the counter next to the stove, toppling them all like Dominos.
“Mikey! Not in the kitchen!”
Carrying a basket of laundry up the stairs, one bounces off the wall next to my head and then ricochets off the edge of the basket and flies into space.
“Mikey! Please. Not while I’m coming up the stairs!”
Getting dressed in my bedroom with the door shut, I hear the little clinks of a ping pong ball hitting the walls, and then my husband’s voice, “Mikey! That went right in my coffee, buddy!”
I mean, I guess it’s better than playing baseball in the house.
Holly Crocco is editor of the Putnam County Press/Times and mother of an almost-6-year-old. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.