A 15 Year Old With a Cold

I came home from work one day last week and started making supper.  I was almost done when I realized Carl must have a cold.  I made this discovery without talking or even seeing my son.  How am I able to figure this out, you may ask?  Do I have psychic powers?  Am I “at one” with my only child?  No, I’m afraid I can’t claim any of these super powers.  I just know a thing or two about my dear progeny!

When I went to set the table, I got my first clue:  We were out of napkins in our table holder.  I was pretty sure it was almost full at lunch time.  What could have happened to 50 napkins?

I then resorted to my napkin backup plan, and went to pull off a few paper towels to use instead.  Clue number two was an empty brown cardboard tube sitting on my paper towel spool holder.  I wasn’t sure how many were left at lunch time, but there had to be at least half a roll.

My “Daddy Senses” were tingling, so I walked into the bathroom to see what else was going on.  The box of facial tissue was not sitting above the toilet like it usually is.  This third clue convinced me that Carl unmistakably had a cold.  How can I be so sure?  These three clues are indicative of a pattern Carl has always followed, otherwise known as “the path of least resistance.”

Carl was playing his newest video game that afternoon in our den.  The kitchen is on the way to the bathroom, so when he needs a tissue, he stops at the first available piece of paper he finds, the napkin holder, and takes a napkin to blow his nose into.

The paper towel dispenser is about three steps beyond the napkin holder, so when the napkins run out, it gets hit next.  He continues to return to the paper towels each time he needs to blow his nose until they too are exhausted.

When he has walked into the kitchen 50 – 100 times to take every single napkin and paper towel, THEN he takes the box of facial tissue back to the den with him.

I have talked with Carl about this on several occasions, expressing my desire for him to take the box of tissues before he uses up everything else in the house, but it never seems to sink in.  I’ve even brought up germs, which usually has some affect on him, but even that doesn’t keep him from grabbing napkins. Don’t the paper towels hurt his nose?

I guess that’s the difference between an adult and a teenager.  My faulty logic sees taking 30 steps to get the tissue box as being preferable to taking 15 steps 100 times.  My son’s logic tells him 15 is less than 30.  He hopes that one trip is all he’ll need.  I guess that makes some sense, but to keep believing that line of thought 100 times over and over again is something I can’t quite comprehend.

I’m quite sure my reasoning ability was much more advanced than that when I was 15.  I would also be appreciative if all people who knew me when I was 15 would kindly refrain from commenting on this post.  Any evidence that may be offered to suggest that I was equally as silly as my son will not be tolerated!

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