I Need These Household Inventions

Alarm that sounds and photo taken when items are dropped on the floor.

Alarm that sounds and photo taken when parental chocolate stash is compromised by non-parental. May or may not involve electric shock.

Feline detection system to activate two hours prior to the moment I lay down in bed and hear cat grooming noises somewhere in my room.

Central vacuum ports on every flat surface with ports large enough for toys, purses, tools, dirty dishes, and cats.

Shower timer that reverses the flow after 27.5 minutes and becomes vacuum port large enough for waterlogged teenager whose hair still isn’t washed.

Leftover management system that automatically disposes of items in refrigerator that pass the moment of safe consumption. Containers automatically washed and returned to cabinet.

Clean laundry detection system to activate when clean and folded laundry is tossed in hamper with dirty laundry.

Alarm to signal ensuing celebration if dirty laundry actually makes it to a hamper.

Television and DVD player powered by treadmill with no other power source available. Older siblings not allowed to make younger children do all the jogging. Alarm will sound.

Automatic audio recording to play when I am awakened from a nap by, “Mom. Mom. Mom. Mom. Are you awake?” Recorded voice will slightly resemble mine, but will be a kinder, gentler, less maniacal version responding, “Yes, dear. What do you need?”

Video surveillance activated by whatever activity directly precedes escalating voices, slapping sounds, and communications such as get-away-from-me, you’re-stupid, and I’m-telling-Mom.

Freeze ray to zap kids the instant they put their foot on the bottom stair to carry dishes containing food and drink to family room.

Force field surrounding maternal figure immediately upon detection of onset of kid-itis. Symptoms include low patience levels, inability to determine or care “who did it,” and the feeling that someone rubbed all my skin off.

Audio recording on continuous loop with the voice of Jesus (please, no British accent) telling me to chill out, that I’m not in this alone, that He’s got my back (actually all of it), and that He’ll fill in all my cavernous parenting gaps.

Freeze ray to zap kids at exactly the age they are at this moment so I can keep them this way. Because I love them. Even though they inspired all these inventions. And wake me up from naps. And eat my chocolate.

I do love them. I do.

Janice Powell 2013


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