Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Call of the Wild Saltine

Context: the Principal really likes Saltines. I'm not sure why. He eats them with chili and any other soup I serve.

However, last night he took the last package of Saltines out of the last box of Saltines. And left the empty box on the shelf.

The Teacher has a Thing about empty boxes. Woe to him who uses the last stick of butter from the fridge and leaves the box! So she immediately snatched the box off the shelf and said, from the fury of her soul, "You just leave the box!"

The Principal has always been able to think quickly, and in this family a joke is the fastest way out of a tight spot. "Of course I just leave the box! I want Saltines with my lunch tomorrow! This way, passing Saltines will see it's a safe place to nest and there will be more Saltines in the morning!"

The Teacher put the box on the table (apparently empty boxes are okay if they aren't on the shelf; go figure). "It won't work just like that; you need to give them the right idea."

So the Principal put two whole Saltines in the box and then one half Saltine as a 'baby' so that any wandering Saltines would be able to recognize the box as a cracker breeding ground. Then they turned the box around so that it was facing away from the Principal, because everyone knows that Saltines are very shy.

This morning: I sat down to eat breakfast and noticed that for some reason the Principal's plan for attracting more Saltines hadn't worked: there were still only two and a half Saltines in the box. I informed him of this crisis.

"Did you do the Saltine call?" he wanted to know. No, I didn't know we had one. So the Principal strode firmly to stand behind the Saltine box and struck the I'm-Going-To-Be-Seriously-Silly pose that seems to be part of our family's DNA. Raising both hands to make a trumpet around his mouth, he threw his head back and called, "Salty salty salty crackERS!"

This call has an important twist on most food calls: you hold your hands like doors over your mouth; shut the doors at the beginning of the call, open them for each salty, close them between salties, and leave them standing wide open on the triumphant crackERS! This is important. Don't get it wrong.

So the Principal taught me this call, and then we had to teach it to the Teacher, who kept demanding that we close our eyes, which is when I let slip my own life philosophy: "When she tells you to close your eyes that's the last thing you should do." Finally the Teacher gave the Principal some Saltines that had been hiding on the bar.

The Principal: "But... these are domestic Saltines! I wanted wild ones!"

This is when the Teacher told him he needed to go to work.


  1. Oh. My. Goodness.

    Life at your house is just NEVER dull, is it? That was awesome! Thanks for the laugh.

    Now . . . I wonder if I could breed some wild chocolate? :D

  2. Oh that I were a fly on the wall! :-)

  3. is that why all your saltines have "raised in captivity" written on them? I did wounder about that.