Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Super-bly glued

My glasses are only two years old, and yet they need to be treated like late-Triassic fossils.  All dainty brushed and pieces labeled to be reassembled at the museum.  I'll be reading the paper and PLOP! an ear piece interrupts the latest political scandal.  This combined with all these trips we've taken had worn me out. I'd spent too much time packing and unpacking, hunting down edible meals, public parenting (especially taxing work), map reading, and tracking tiny screws and vanishing glasses parts (very difficult to track!).

So... at my father-in-law's house I finally asked for some super glue.  Of all the annoying little pains-in-the-ass buzzing around my bonnet, this one could be solved once and for all!  Instead of heading down to the glue-ten Bakery, I would stay home. Huck tossed the tube at me and trotted after the Bakery mission.

Knowing what he knows...  Experiencing what he's experienced...  How could he so blythely flick this tube of super glue at me?  As if he were some innocent.  As if he'd never witnessed all that can and does go wrong with me and super glue.  As if he never conferenced with me on the one binding Sarajoy-rule of the house.  As if he himself has never heroically plunged between me and a tube of glue.  How could he?  I'm not sure he himself knows how he committed this crime.  But he did.  He chucked a tube of super glue at me.  And left me.  Alone.

I still thought, however utterly pointless a rendezvous of me and a bakery may be, I might be able to catch up and at least enjoy watching my children eat glue-ten.  After all, what did the package say? Sets in 10 seconds!  I plopped right down to my father-in-law's and his girlfriend's-of-umpteen-years perfect, new, missions-style dining-room table. I whipped off the lid of that glue and plunged the poker through the the top of the tube.  Out sprayed a massive projectile fiasco all over that perty perty table.  I knew then how foolish this all was.  How stupid Huck had been.  How inappropriately cavalier I'd acted with that bottle.

Don't worry, I experienced these hindsights while panicking.  I wasted no time sitting and thinking and regretting. No, I did all of that while leaping into immediate, inept action.  On the off chance water might work, I grabbed a wash clothe and scrubbed at the table thereby smearing the bubbles of glue so that what permanently formed were little blown Mt. St. Helenses of superness.  And the rag stuck to my hands.  Everything got stuck to my hands.  The faucet nozzles.  My fingers.  The bottle of glue itself.  Everything!  With the limited dexterity and sense I had left, I managed to glue my glasses back together... in a permanently open position of course. (Given the options for permanence, I suppose "open" really was a god-send).

I scoured their house for finger nail polish remover.  Normally, I always know where their fingernail polish remover is.  At their house and yours too.  And this is why:  my high school drivers-ed teacher told me to "always leave yourself an out."  In my youth I took this metaphor to a whole new level, always making sure I'd know the closest and fastest way to commit suicide at any location I might be at... should whoever was in my company bore or humiliate me to the point of insufferability, even if I was alone.  And in my adulthood, I have taken it to mean that, should your husband cast a tube of super-glue at you, where might you find the only thing you've ever known to remove super-glue?  And so the closest location of acetone is always being scanned in to my memory bank.  Right now?  Small closet in the basement, top shelf.   But that day, at my in-laws, I couldn't find it in any of the places I'd filed it.  After checking the places I knew, I checked the places of possibility followed quickly by the places of improbability.  Nothing.

But I found my keys easily enough, dangled them from my one free pinky and took to the CRV.  The bottle still firmly glued to my hand (though the dishrag was gone... mostly) and my fingers all superbly glued together.  I eventually turned the key and then drove to the store with my forearms on the wheel.  While shopping at a near run, I kept my hands discretely tucked in together and grasped the blue acetone in my elbow.  Luckily, the store offered self check out.  Ah! I skipped!  No explanations required!  Just me and ... and... and... a wallet with a card in the back and a machine to slide this thin slippery card through.  So simple.  So effing simple. So simple it took about five minutes and a lot of perspiration and swearing, followed by snooping security officers.

I found my way back, driving again with my elbows and forearms.  After a good and odorific 10 minute acetone soak, my fingers pried apart (it took a while longer to get ALL the dried glue off) and I was free to now cope with the archipelago of busted spots over their glossy table top.  Did you know that acetone isn't good for table top finish?  Let me illuminate: a little isn't good and is also ineffective for removing super-glue.  A lot is equally as ineffective for the glue and worse for the finish. 

When they all returned skipping and trotting, full of the best kind of glue, I was a mess of tears.  Of course, my in-law and step-in-law-ish lady assured me that they loved me more than their table and that my construction-stud-muffin-in-law could fix ANYTHING!  And all I could say to Huck, through my hiccupping tears was: I might have glued my glasses to my face! How could you leave me like that?  Alone.  With a super glue bottle?  Everyone knows.  EVERYONE KNOWS!  Sarajoy and a bottle of super glue is the worst kind of news.

It might take years to rebuild my trust in him again.


  1. This is one of the funniest things I have read in a very long time!

  2. Tears! Tears sliding down my cheeks... some for the laughter, some for the pain. Beautifully written. An amazing scene played out as a comedy of errors, in my mind's eye. Thank you, thank you!



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