It’s Not All Mary Poppins


Having a boatload of children in this house, your standard Brita pitcher is wholly inadequate, and so we have one of these babies:

In the summer it sits on a shelf in the fridge, but as I don’t much care for cold water in the winter, right now it sits on the kitchen counter. This is the side view. That dark blue thing on the left of the picture is the flange of the spigot on the front of it. The nice thing about this model, the thing, besides its large capacity, that makes it better for a large family than their pitchers, is that you can pour water into the reservoir at the top, and be able to get yourself a glass of water at the same time. With the pitchers, you have to wait for it to stop filtering before you can pour.

Enough of the informercial. (If you’re interested in knowing more, the picture is a link to the Brita people.)

So, as I said, this sits on the counter, totally ignored by all the tots. All except Arthur. Mechanically inclined, gizmo-obsessed Arthur. Arthur, who puts inappropriate things in his mouth, who drools pretty much non-stop, who licks his nose. And, when not doing any of these bodily-fluid-y things, Arthur picks his nose. A lot. Till it bleeds, in fact.

Arthur washes his hands a lot. He isn’t generally allowed in my lap for a snuggle with washing his hands. Arthur also washes his hands before helping to set the table – which he loves to do, being a cheerful and social little dude. Arthur is not allowed to handle anything that might come in contact with anyone else’s hands or face, because Arthur’s hands have almost certainly been somewhere moist and germ-ridden only moments before.

Adam comes out of the kitchen, looking a bit green.

“Mom? Hey, Mom, we need to move the Brita. Arthur’s been touching it.”

Okay. We’re careful about Arthur’s hands, and I’ll steer him away from it, but I don’t see how touching the outside of the Brita is really a problem. I’ll just wipe it down with some disinfectant.

“No, mom. He’s not touching the outside. He’s been sticking his finger right up the spigot!!”

Now that’s a truly disconcerting image. It’s a small, moist opening. Arthur’s small, slimy finger probably fits up that spigot just as neatly as it does up his nose…

Adam drops to his knees and bends his six-foot body over so he can peer up into the spout. “Awww, man! Do you suppose there’s boogers in there? That is so gross, mom.” An even worse thought occurs to him: “How long has he been doing that, and we didn’t know?”

Is there a disinfectant you can swallow?

January 11, 2006 - Posted by | eeewww


  1. Ewww! EWWwwwww!
    (Fits with the “new” joke in our house–my dad said it while I was growing up, so I’ve inflicted it on my kids, but my daughter just (finally) got it yesterday–
    You may think it’s funny when your nose is runny…but it’s snot.

    Comment by LoryKC | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  2. Oh GOD. I just threw up in my mouth a little.

    Comment by MIM | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  3. That is absolutely disgusting. Ew Ew EW Ew EW.

    Comment by Haley | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  4. Oh no!!! Well, there’s nothing you can do about what you might have already consumed. I’d be concerned about how to properly clean the spigot, though. Yuck. What a terrible discovery.

    Comment by Kristen | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  5. My flesh is crawling after just reading that!

    Comment by L. | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  6. Oh wow.

    When I was in the military medical department, when we brought new water distribution tanks out, the first thing we did was to disinfect them by filling with super chlorinated water (bleach) and running it through the spigots.

    Comment by jw | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  7. Lory: I’m with you, it may seem funny, but it’s snot… ewwWWwwwwwWWw…

    mim: Mm-hmmm. Definitely gag-inducing.

    Haley: And, having met Arthur, you know I’m not exaggerating his hygiene issues…

    Kristen: It’s done already. See below. Not to worry!

    L: You know how you come up with “it could be worse” scenarios to make yourself feel better? Well, there are a couple, but you know what? Yes, they’re worse, but they don’t make me feel better, somehow.

    JW: Done. In fact, in the winters when I have the thing on the counter at room temperature, I disinfect the whole thing once a month. Take it apart, immerse both reservoirs in a sink full of bleach-and-water solution, and then refill the reservoir with a slightly stronger solution and let it trickle through the spigot.

    This, though, this called for full-strength bleach…

    Comment by Mary P. | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  8. Urgh.

    Comment by misfit | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  9. coming in a little late – yuck

    Comment by Granny | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  10. EW!

    Just EW!

    Comment by kimmyk | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  11. Eek! Glad you got it taken care of!

    Comment by Andie D. | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  12. First of all– ew! I’m glad you disinfected it today… and secondly, it must be a Canadian thing to leave the water on the counter during the winter- my mom REFUSES to have cold water all winter long!

    Comment by Angela | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  13. Came over from your comment on my blog – thanks by the way – and can I just say EEEwwwwwww for the first post I read? ICKY.

    Now I have to go read more, I think I’m going to like it here. LOL

    Comment by Mary | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  14. I thought my illness had improved slightly, so I decided to catch up with you. And now, thank you very much, I’m off to the bathroom to puke again.

    Comment by The June Cleaver Diaries | January 11, 2006 | Reply

  15. I can’t pass this one up. After reading your great blog post and reading all of the freaked out comments, I’ve decided to start a place on my computer where I am going to make copies of “The Greatest Blog Posts of All Time”. After I get enough of them maybe I will publish them somehow.

    Comment by jw | January 12, 2006 | Reply

  16. EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!!! Yuks to the visibles and invisibles!!!

    Comment by Queen Bee | January 12, 2006 | Reply

  17. Misfit, granny, kimmy, andie: That about sums it up, yes. This job is not for the squeamish. I am not squeamish, but I do have my limits, and Arthur is the boy to find them!

    Angela: Your mom is Canadian? I don’t have cold water in the winter because it’s cold enough already not to want to cool my insides. You live where it’s hot, no? She must have just been so well trained in her youth she can’t shake the habit!

    Mary: Welcome! Glad you enjoyed it. I enjoyed writing it: therapeutic, it was, or perhaps cathartic. Once I figure out out to make a third column for categories, one of the categories is going to be merely, “Eeewwwww”!

    June: Oooh, sorry! Can I say I’m glad to see my writing is so effective, though??

    JW: I have another possible contender for the honour, then: The Worst Shit Story Ever. It’s one of my top three “eeww” stories.

    QueenBee: Welcome! In some ways, the invisibles are WORSE, aren’t they? Bleah…

    Comment by Mary P. | January 12, 2006 | Reply

  18. Wow, half of me is laughing and the other half is just…*shudder*…imagining the same thing happening in my own kitchen. Ewww.

    Comment by chosha | January 15, 2006 | Reply

  19. […] this is a four-year-old has just been allowed to pour herself her OWN cups of water from the Brita. When you are almost four, such things are very important. And […]

    Pingback by The Rules say… « It’s Not All Mary Poppins | February 25, 2014 | Reply

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