In an attempt to explain this phenomena by utilizing mathematic principles, we went through the laundry, separated the clothes, subtracted how many days since the basket was empty, and then divided it by the number of children in our home — which lead to an important discovery:
We had become trapped in the bathroom after our pile of clothes fell against the door.
While it’s true we have four children between us, according to my calculations they are changing their clothes every 18 minutes. This includes through the night, when they apparently take turns changing EACH OTHER while sleeping in shifts. This would explain how they can have a closet full of clothes at bedtime, then wake up and have nothing to wear. It would also explain why their bed sheets are always untucked and strewn on the floor by morning; they are using the sheets to drag each other’s sleeping bodies back and forth to the closet.
Also included in our mathematical equation was the “X” quotient, which represents clothes that don’t actually make it home from school until the end of the year, when they magically re-appear in the closet two sizes too small.
Even though they are homosapians capable of walking in an upright position, we have to assume, judging from their pants, our children spend most of the day on their hands and knees trapping moles. As a result, we discussed the idea of getting ahead of the curve by purchasing new pants, and then immediately cutting the knees out. This would effectively eliminate 90 percent of the grass stains from our laundry while, at the same time, providing our children with knee calluses the size of Egg McMuffins. We decided against this because we realized our children would be missing an important lesson about taking care of their clothes.
We also realized we really needed to stop and eat because the phrase “Egg McMuffin knee calluses” made us salivate.
What we eventually decided on was a responsibility checklist for each of our children. This list is designed to encourage them to take care of their clothes as well as themselves. Naturally, there is a reward system involved for completing this checklist each day, such as reward option 1) Not having to go to school naked.
I will let you know if our plan is successful.
As soon as we get out of the bathroom.
(Ned is syndicated with News Media Corporation. Write to him at firstname.lastname@example.org, or at Siuslaw News, P.O. Box Florence, Ore. 97439)