Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Rules to Live By

"Oh Maaaaaaw-Maaaaah," yelled Sylvia a few weeks ago, "I see some sunshine on the ruuuuu-uuug." She thought it important that I be notified immediately, since I live by the following rule:

If you see a patch of sunshine on the rug, make like a cat and lay down in it.

I figure this is a good rule to live by. If you've never gotten in touch with your feline side, you might not understand. But if you've ever curled up on the warm rug, then streeeetched your body, then carefully curled back up to fit your body within the patch of sunshine, then you know that this rule makes good sense. In fact, you are likely adopting it as your own rule right now.

Evidently I have a penchant for the prone position, because another one of my rules is that

I will take a Sunday afternoon nap as often as possible. When it's Sunday, that is.

I have been taking a Sunday afternoon nap for as long as I can remember. Not every Sunday, mind you, but more often than not. I remember the delicious feeling of climbing into my bed in junior high and high school, my body melting like wax into fixed grooves, and waking up just in time for dinner (which was cinnamon toast or a bowl of cereal, since Sunday night was Scrounge Your Own Food Night in our house). Thankfully, Tobin respects this rule but does not live by it himself. Since he's not a napper, he is available to get the kids the heck out of the house on Sunday afternoon so that I can sleep in peace. This means that however much I appreciate your invitation to Sunday afternoon lunch, I will weigh it heavily against the possibility of missing my Sunday afternoon nap.

Living by these maxims as I do, I completely understood when my friend C told me she'd decided on a Drumstick Rule. She may have called it the Drumstick Proclamation; I can't remember for sure. You know Drumsticks? Those ice-cream-cone shaped frozen snacks with the nutty bits on the top? Up until the advent of the Rule, she'd been in a quandry each and every time the cafeteria at her work offered them for dessert. C would mentally calculate how much running she'd done that week or was likely to do that evening after work, whether she'd been eating healthfully during that week, and other complicated mathematical computations involving mental graphs and spreadsheets. Then one day she decided to throw all of that thinking out the window. They're only offered once in a while, she reasoned, and so from now on, when they are, I'm going to eat one without question, she thought to herself. Hear ye hear ye, let it be known:

C will eat a drumstick for dessert whenever they are offered at work.

What rules do you live by? And I'm not talking about the Golden Rule here, though I did recently find it written on a heart in 1st grade handwriting, in a version that I call King James meets The Message:

Do unto uthrs just as you wud like to be tridid.