“What’s that smell?”

It’s Saturday morning, and morning comes early in the house of the BUMD, because we have children with allergies. Specifically, Number One Son is allergic to sleeping past, say, 6 am. So we’re up, and since it’s Saturday morning, I’m cooking. In case you’re hungry, I’ll tell you what I’m cooking, which is to the right, scrapple, and to the left, pancakes. The pancakes are on the big cast-iron griddle, next to the can of bacon fat, which is being spooned cake by cake onto the griddle (and then an extra dab onto the top of each pancake before I flip them).

I have long since yanked the battery out of the hallway cooking detector, which leads a double life as a smoke alarm by night and a pain in my ass by day. I have not, at this point in our story, had enough coffee to consider turning on the fan above the stove. By the time the scrapple is done – which is not a source of smoke, I’ll have you know – the pancakes are nearly ready, and the kitchen is so filed with smoke from the bacon fat that it penetrates my caffeine-deficient brain that I should turn on the fan and open the window. I accomplish these minor feats and set the table.

We sit to eat, nearly everyone in the house being awake or at least ambulatory by this point, and everything ready but the coffee. Scrapple is yummy. Pancakes are yummy, even the slightly burnt ones. The coffeepot beeps to let me know that it’s ready when I am. Number One Son has eaten most of a small pancake, which constitutes 80 percent of his caloric intake for the day, and has removed himself to the kitchen. The sunlight has finally broken over the treetops to grace our smoke-filled kitchen, and my son is marveling at the grand spectacle of the streaming rays of morning blazing their discrete paths through the haze.

“Daddy, it’s a miracle! The sunlight has decided to visit our kitchen, and it’s shining right through the window to light up OUR kitchen! The sunlight is a miracle this morning!”

I couldn’t help but agree with him. The simple action of the sun coming up in the East every morning continually strikes me as a miracle in and of itself. The rays of light streaming through the window were indeed beautiful. “Big Man, you’re right, it sure is a miracle.” I moved past him to get to the coffee, into the light.

“Daaaddy,” said Number One Son, with the exasperation for ignorant adults that only a 6-yr-old can voice, “you’re STEPPING in the miracle.” The tone was that of, ewww, you’ve stepped in that turd. I actually found myself looking to see if any of it had stuck to me before I fell over laughing. I couldn’t shake the smell of that miracle on the bottom of my shoe all day.

So, if you’re standing next to someone today and you detect a faint odor that you just can’t place, remember – they just might have stepped in a miracle that morning.

But it’s probably a turd.

One Response to ““What’s that smell?””

  1. […] the last time he’d noticed that sort of thing, he had a somewhat different reaction.    The sunlight used to be a miracle in our house.  Today, he looks at the living room and […]

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