Empty nest = empty house + empty pockets x children

Janelle Von PinnonColumnLeave a Comment

I never understood algebra before, but I am learning fast. Our oldest son just got his first apartment, and he furnished it with everything we owned. If I have the math right, it means we are one more son away from an empty nest and bankruptcy.

I’ve come to the conclusion the only difference between a burglar and a child moving out is: a burglar wants your good stuff, but the child wants all your stuff.

I couldn’t wait to tell my husband, Kermit, the good news.

“Randy got an apartment and he has already moved in!” I said, as Kermit walked in the door.

Apparently stunned speechless and weak at the knees, he blindly headed for the nearest chair.

“Wait! You can’t sit in that chair,” I yelped.

“Why not?” he asked, stoop-standing.

“There’s no chair there.”

Kermit looked at the empty space behind him. It was the space previously occupied by a rocker-glider chair and ottoman.

“Where is our chair?” he asked in confusion. He looked around, “Where is the ottoman? The folding table? The standing lamp? The end table? The stereo?!. We’ve been robbed and your big news is Randy got an apartment? Did you call 911? Did you notify our insurance company?” Kermit looked at me as if I had lost my mind. He marched toward the phone in full Barney Fife mode, ready to nip this burglar in the bud.

I was surprised by his reaction and apparent lack of algebraic deduction. I had to nip Barney in the bud.

“We weren’t robbed. We were just indefinitely borrowed from,” I explained. “Our stuff just doesn’t live here anymore. It has moved to Randy’s apartment, but we can visit it whenever we want.”

Thoroughly annoyed and not even slightly amused, Kermit asked “What else was indefinitely borrowed so I can say hi when I visit it?”

Feeling nipped in my bud, I sheepishly confessed a few of the thousand things.

“Umm, a couple pots and pans, some cutlery, utensils, Tupperware, dishes and glassware, the New Wave oven, the mini-skillet, some bedding, towels, washcloths, cleaning supplies, dry food, canned goods and money.”

Barney/Kermit looked like he was in the middle of a stroke, but he managed to croak, “You have until NOW to learn the word NO! Because if you don’t, the next thing leaving THIS nest will be YOU! Can you do that math?”

(Sheesh! Some people just don’t understand algebra!).

Author: Janelle Von Pinnon

Von Pinnon has been publishing the St. Joseph Newsleader since 1989, the Sartell-St. Stephen Newsleader since 1995 and the Sauk Rapids-Rice Newsleader since 2015. She graduated from Minnesota State University-Moorhead with degrees in mass communications (with an emphasis on print journalism) and biology. She lives in southeast St. Cloud with her husband and two children.

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