The Matron arrives home close to 1 pm, after the usual classroom dramas, including the hundred million late assignments that students needed to discuss, right now.
Classroom technology felled her. Think Othello was a blood bath? This is nothing compared to the Matron versus the overhead projector.
She is hungry, tired.
But alas, she also procreated.
The Matron cuts and slices: carrots, basil, onion, curry. Thus, she bulks up the exotic can of split pea soup.
Stryker toils by her side: eggs, butter, cheese. Thus, he begins the omelette.
At 1:12, the Matron sits down to her steaming bowl of soup. Breakfast is a distant memory, somewhere before 8 am.
"Mom! Can you do the toast! Please! I'm afraid I'll burn this!"
Stryker's culinary skills are just emerging, meaning he can do one thing at a time.
The Matron snaps up bread, swift as a bee. She's proud of her son's acumen with heat and a skillet, happy to lend that hand.
She grabs a plate and pours milk, too, other complex mama skills.
"Mama! I have to go to the bathroom!"
Merrick staggers past, clutching his penis, a dam in Holland. Wait, he's waddling.
"Mama! Poop too! Come on!"
Oh, a multi-themed party!
Because the bathroom holds monsters and fiends that only the Matron can stave off (ah, Merrick, if you had seen your mother thrash with a DVD earlier today. . . you wouldn't be quite so confident), the Matron stands outside the door with just the right attitude.
From the bathroom: "Don't look at me! Don't open the door! Are you still there? Are you waiting?"
Matron: "Not a peep. Right here. Stationary."
From the kitchen: "Mom! Mom! Mom! I am SO sorry! I just knocked over the whole thing of milk. Oh My God. Help!"
Bathroom: "Don't leave me! Don't leave me!"
The Matron assures Merrick that she is glued to that door and silently whips down the stairs to toss towels in the kitchen, racing back up just in time to respond appropriately to this:
"Don't look at me! Don't open the door! Are you still there! Are you waiting?"
The bottom is wiped, the milk mopped.
The Matron microwaves her soup.
Jekyll is standing by the door. The Matron opens the door but before she can shove him out, he pees. Scruffy bolts by and soars out the door, heading (the Matron hopes) for his various escape routes.
The Matron wipes up pee.
Suddenly the house is filled with a scream so loud that tea cups rattle in China.
Scarlett runs into the kitchen: "I stubbed my toe on the radiator!"
The Matron rolls her eyes and hauls that child onto her lap. There, there. Let me see it. Oh my that must really hurt. Do you think you can self-regulate any time soon?
"Mom! Scruffy is over at Eva's!"
Because we all know how the Matron feels about this dog: she puts on her coat and boots and retrieves Satan's Familiar who has just eaten the wild cat's dinner on the neighbor's porch. The Matron understands this dinner will be deposited on the hallway floor in about two hours.
The Matron returns to the kitchen where Scarlett decides the toe requires an ice pack and Merrick wants his temperature taken--not to be outdone.
When the Matron attempts protest, the child falls to pieces: "Feel my fowehead! I have a feber!"
The thermometer disproves this theory.
Scarlett's ice pack is buffered by a washcloth. Too much cold.
Stryker enters, in the midst of some strange project. "Mom! Can you tie a knot, right here, now?"
The Matron's fingers become giant sausages. Can you even see that string in this light? She searches through drawers for her reading glasses.
The Matron microwaves her soup. It is 2:20.
The phone rings. Scarlett leaps: "Hello? Hi Daddy!"
Starving prisoners of war have nothing on the Matron. She clutches that bowl of soup: "Tell him I can't talk -- I'm eating."
Scarlett rolls her eyes and reports with utter airy disdain: "She can't talk. You know how she is when she's eating."