Two Month Old Milk, Two Day Old Vomit…and a Grape Skittle

I’ve discovered that, as a parent, I feel much the same about cleaning out our minivan as I do about going in search of something in my wife’s purse. I’m overwhelmed before I even begin, I’d rather not be doing it, and I’m very worried about what I might find. I’m also obsessed with the possibility of inadvertently stabbing myself with something.

* * * * *

About two months ago, just before the cold weather permanently settled in for the winter, my wife was driving home from the dairy. This incident may or may not have been told previously on Facebook, Twitter or other social media sites. One of the glass half-gallon jugs of milk toppled and smashed. The milk ran throughout the van and soaked into the carpet.

I wearily trudged to the van after hearing of this disaster, trying to keep a good attitude toward the love of my life, armed with some sort of carpet cleaner, an endless supply of paper towels, and a tub of hot soapy water. My cleaning efforts were weak, at best.

How smelly can old milk really get, anyway? I asked myself, opting not to pull out the carpets.

Two months later, I can tell you.

Very smelly. So smelly it takes four of those little green trees to drown out the stench. I arrive at meetings smelling like pine needles soaked in Pine-Sol.

* * * * *

Last week my family got sick. It started with Sam projectile vomiting at the end of the tour of the Hershey’s Chocolate Factory.

“He was probably just car sick,” we said. “Or maybe that little ride in the factory upset his stomach. Or maybe it’s that pine smell in the van.”

The next day his sister threw up, same van, right on the seat. Which is right above where most of the milk had pooled two months prior. I wasn’t home at the time, but my wife, very considerately I might add, left the vomit-covered seat for me to clean up. So, on Saturday, at the end of a week during which 5 of the 6 of us  shared Sammy’s little belly virus, I found myself cleaning out the van.

* * * * *

I started with the vacuum, and this really is the crux of my story. I’ve often marveled at how, now that I’m a parent, nothing really grosses me out anymore. I eat stuff off the floor, I let my kids slobber and drool all over me – I almost licked some poop off of my hand while changing a diaper because I didn’t know what it was. After watching four kids stick everything and anything into their mouths, I now find myself doing exactly that.

What’s this? I don’t know. How should I examine it? I think I’ll stick it in my mouth.

* * * * *

While I was vacuuming the overwhelmingly piney, sour-milk smelling, vomitty stench that is now our van carpets, I noticed a little M&M on the floor. I’m not a big M&M fan, so I vacuumed it up. But just as it was going into the nozzle, I realized it was not an M&M.

It was a grape Skittle. It had that beautiful little Helvetica “S” on the side.

And for a split second I had to admit something to myself, something I’m now admitting to the world.

If I would have known that was a grape Skittle, I would have eaten it.

* * * * *

Is there anything in the world that you would eat, if you found it on a similar van floor in similar circumstances? Be honest now.

And for one of my most argued-over posts (a top 10 candy ranking), read THIS

3 Replies to “Two Month Old Milk, Two Day Old Vomit…and a Grape Skittle”

  1. nice story, I will have to see if the same thing happens when I become a parent here in a couple months . . . hmmm maybe if it was a lime skittle, not a big grape fan.

Comments are closed.