Three of the most evil words in the English language may be: Some Assembly Required. I generally try to eschew any toys that come with this warning as though they’re laced with anthrax but sometimes, it cannot be avoided. If we do purchase something that requires consulting a manual and a little elbow grease, I, without shame or guilt, hand it off to dear old hubby. I mean really, there are just some things that men need to take care of: opening jars, changing tires, and trapping mice. It’s not that I can’t do these things, it’s just that I choose not to. And besides, it’s a good excuse to make Chris feel like he’s needed around here.
But once in a while, the menfolk are absent due to work, travel, or more likely, golf, and it falls on us of the fairer sex to roll up our sleeves and git it done. I found myself in such a predicament this past week. In joyful celebration of our early spring, I bought Sarah a new scooter and Katie a Strider bike. Both sat in boxes for a couple of days until finally, the girls could not take it anymore. They staged a minor prison riot demanding I assemble the toys and with dread in my heart, I acquiesced. I warned both girls that they would have to be patient and entertain themselves in the driveway while I went to work. Here’s how it went down:
3:45PM: Spent 5 minutes trying to cut through the tape on the Strider bike box using industrial strength shears. Ripped off a fingernail; held back a curse word.
3:50PM: Removed Strider bike from the box and located instructions. Glancing at the manual instantly gave me a migraine; held back a curse word.
3:55PM: Located nuts, bolts, washer, and tiny wrench like tool included for assembly. Got the handle bars on with little effort but put the tires on wrong. Held back a curse word.
4:05PM: Almost done with Strider Bike….clamped the seat on and had Katie sit on it only to discover that it was too low. Katie starts screaming that she wants her bike NOW; held back a curse word.
4:10PM: Katie still screaming. Sarah asks me if we can go get curly fries. Gave her the look of death (but no yelling!). Held back a curse word.
4:12PM: Katie is unnaturally quiet. Look up to see her blowing bubbles in the street. Hauled her back up the driveway; held back a curse word.
4:14PM: Katie and Sarah start fighting because Katie is blowing bubbles onto Sarah’s head. Threatened both girls that Strider bike AND Scooter would be donated to Goodwill. Held back a curse word.
4:15PM: Strider bike is DONE!!! Hooray! But Sarah starts to whine that her scooter is still in the box. Held back a curse word.
4:17PM: Scooter out of box and instructions opened. BAM! Double migraine. Held back a curse word.
4:20PM: Screwed on handle bar bolts only to discover they were the long ones; should have been the shorter ones. Held back a curse word.
4:21PM: Katie attempting to throw rocks at passing cars. Held back a curse word.
4:23PM: Seething while I used the tiniest wrench ever to screw on the bolts for the handle bars. Cursing the Chinese people and their teeny tiny fingers for inventing such a torturous tool. Wrench only allows me to move it 30 degrees at a time which resulted in about 100 “turns” per bolt. Held back lots of curse words.
4:45PM: Handle bars are on! Now on to the foot rest. Bolts are round but the holes are square. What the frick?! Pierced skin and drew blood while I used my open palm to beat the bolt into submission. Held back a curse word AND wished for a shot of Patrón.
4:57PM: Scooter is DONE!! Girls are elated and proceed to ride on their toys for approximately 28 seconds before announcing they were bored. Held back a curse word.