As paranoid as I am, I always keep the doors locked, even when I'm home. Some people find it a little disconcerting that as soon as they enter my home, I will lock the door behind them. If it came down to a fight, they have to judge whether or not they could take me before they can relax.
Last night as I was walking through the house, turning off lights and checking locks, I made an interesting realization: my kids are way better at keeping the house secure than I am. Seems like each toy was strategically placed right in my path, with it's pointiest features ready to make contact with bare feet.
So here's what might happen if someone attempted to break into the house:
First, he'd begin in the kitchen. Why, I don't know...maybe he wants a snack to start off his burglary. But in the kitchen (where, by the way, toys are forbidden) he'd be so intent on looking around for something he could steal that he wouldn't see the little ride-on car until he was stumbling over it. He'd regain his balance and then pause, checking for signs that he'd been heard. Satisfied, he'd continue on, ignoring his throbbing ankle and removing his shoes so he could move quietly. Because he isn't used to looking for them, he wouldn't see the kid-sized table right there next to the family-sized one. He'd bang his knee something fierce and really have to work at not swearing. But two steps away from the table he'd step on something that felt like a metallic porcupine. Really, it's a Happy Meal toy but the sensation when stepped on is the same. Limping slightly, he would continue on, sure there were riches to be had. On the third step he'd lose his balance when his bare foot made contact with something impossible slippery laying right in the middle of the step. It is a booby trap? Nope. Just my daughter's discarded ballerina costume.
Not caring now, he'd plow his way up the stairs. That plastic wheelbarrow is the perfect height to smack him right in the sensitive part of his shins and it's placed right at the top of the stairs. Keeping his balance will be the hard part. If he starts going down, it's all over because he has arrived in the Toy Room. Little cars and figures are littered across the floor like a bed of nails, just waiting for him to come crashing down. He's sweating now, maybe crying a little, seriously reconsidering this life of crime that he's chosen. After a few missteps and the ensuing pain, he hasn't even made it to the hallway. After picking yet another lethal Barbie hand out of the his foot, he gives up. No amount of money is worth this. He beats a hasty retreat, stumbling over toys and charging down the stairs, only to slip on the ballerina costume and fall the rest of the way. Back on his unsteady and bruised feet, he forces his way past the mini land mines, bangs his other knee on the kids' table and trips over that annoying car until finally, he can make his escape.
Unfortunately, the authorities have already been alerted and are waiting for him outside. Willing, he surrenders, hands in the air as he limps to the arresting officer. As he pleads for a paramedic, the cops shake their heads at his poor choice. Not only did he have to contend with all those deadly toys inside the house but this would-be burglar over-looked one big fact of life: people with children don't have any riches stashed away. They've had to spend all their money on keeping those kids clothed and fed. There are no jewels beyond the costume sets mixed in with their dress-up clothes.
Silly burglar. Never stood a chance.
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