breaking the rules

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“You don’t ever open that up inside the house”! She said with terror in her voice, then continued, “If you spill that in here you’ll ruin anything it touches”! I looked over to see my wife impressing the rules upon our middle daughter, who had decided to use finger nail polish remover at our table, breaking the rules.

That was one of our hard fast rules for all the girls. It must have been about six months or a year later I sat down at our table to see a smudged spot on the finish of our table right in front of the spot I normally eat. “What’s this”? I asked my wife, motioning toward the spot in the table showing down to the natural wood color under the finish. “Ali spilled nail polish remover on the table,” she answered calmly.

“What happened to the rule of ‘no using nail polish remover in the house'”? I asked. “Who knows”! my wife answered in frustration. “She feels horrible”! my wife continued. “Yeah”! – “So do I”! was all I could say.

Probably around a year later I noticed another smudge on our table. Experience told me what I already knew, “Did someone spill nail polish remover on the table again”?! “Yeah”! my wife answered with that familiar tone, “Gurm (our youngest’s nickname), spilled it this time”!!! “Are you kiddin’ me”?! I asked in bewilderment, “Unbelievable”!!! I grumbled.

Two or three years ago as a young adult, our oldest got in on the act. This one I witnessed first hand… She was doing her nails at the kitchen island when she accidentally spilled a bottle of reddish nail polish on the kitchen floor. She moved quickly to start cleaning it, my wife and I also jumped in to help try to salvage the kitchen floor.

We did a pretty good job, but that stain on the floor I noticed last night is the inspiration for this post.

There are frustrations in life… The kids come around mostly, but the animals are less than promising with following their rules.

The stile or piece of wood between the french doors at the back of our house is chewed to a nub. The weather stripping is chewed off as well… The garage service door is chewed up to match the back door.

Since our oldest moved into the little house in the front of our property, her cat has chewed that door to match the dogs work in the backyard. The cat even did one better by pretty much clawing up the furniture inside as well…

It’s easy to sound off in frustration at the people and even animals in our lives, but how well do I follow the rules? Due to gender, finger nail cosmetics aren’t much of an issue for me, but I have my rule issues just like everyone else has theirs.

One of those rules I struggle with is obeying the speed limit. I can read the numbers just fine, but I like to take some artistic flair in the precise interpretations of those numbers. I like to think of them more as a general idea for the average person, kinda’ meant for others more than me.

Often the authorities don’t agree with my interpretations and enforce them literally… I know! Hard to believe! I’ve broken that rule and got caught so often doing it, they invited me to a special class for people with similar beliefs as mine.

After expressing gratitude for their kind invitation, I politely declined the offer. They informed me if I didn’t accept their invitation they would revoke my drivers license… I pleasantly agreed to their generous terms…

It’s pretty easy to pick the weaknesses and failures of others that differ from our own, to pass judgment and even sometimes sentencing…

“Judge not lest ye be judged.”

Maybe I should have that verse hung around my rear view mirror?

Oh, and more good news…

McKenzie got another cat…