When Jakey was two or three, he used to declare “the boss” for the day. He would say things like, “Daddy is the boss today!” and it meant that Dad got to decide everything for the day. Sometimes I was declared boss. But let’s be real, he crowned himself Baby Boss on Day 1.
Now it’s a well known truth amongst groups of animals that there is a pecking order. It seems to be the nature of things. If you’re the dog, or the youngest child, the fingers are always somehow holding their noses, and pointing at you.
And as Nate can attest, our house is no different. He has been blamed for countless missing items, broken items, offensive smells, muddy footprints, crumbs, fingerprints, flooded bathroom floors and candy wrappers stuffed behind couches.
Earlier this week, I came home and was gazing out the kitchen window as I cleaned up after dinner. Wait… is that my new flip flop way out in the middle of the yard?
I go out and retrieve it and place it back with its mate, next to the front door. A little while later, James mentions offhand that earlier that morning, he found his flip flops flung off the back deck— somewhere between the chicken coop and the steep hill that descends into the Chicken Nugget Danger Zone of Fox Apps.
I casually mention this mysterious flip flop phenomenon to the boys.
They feign ignorance. I’m probably embellishing but I remember some whistling and toe scoffing and renewed curiosity in the merits of our ceiling. What I do know is that Nate floats the following theory, “Do you think our chickens did it?”
The pecking order is in full effect.
Fortunately he has the good sense not to propose the tadpoles. Though they’re absolutely at the bottom of our household food chain… literally. Sando tried to eat one of our frogs tonight while Papa was visiting. But I digress…
A day or two later, the mysterious flip flop caper comes up again and Nate asks, “But how exactly would the chickens kick the flip flops so far?” And he’s officially outed himself.
Nate really needs a dog.