It’s been a bad week.
The tables seem to be turning and I’m not happy about it. Thus far, Rat Baby has been the apple of mommy’s eye since the blessed event of her arrival. Soft blankies, whispered sweet nothings, enough adorable pet names to make you lose your breakfast burrito, etc. (Who the hell calls a human being a peach pie?) It’s been no secret that I found the behavior of my mother and those around me that I used to like a little bit more utterly reprehensible since Leona climbed out of that fucking uterus and into the center of my world. But I’m not here to bitch about all that has been bitched about before. Siblings suck my ass, and that’s just the way it is. I feel like I’ve warmed to the idea of not drowning her via swirly in the guest bath or feeding her toilet bowl cleaner for lunch. I’ve made progress. I’ve even entertained an alliance with The Rat. But I’m beginning to think she needs my help about as much as mommy needs another handle of vodka in the liquor hutch. Rat Baby has some serious shit up her sleeve. She is not a good kid. She is stealing my game and making me look like I spend my time singing the word of the Lord in the Vienna Boys’ Choir.
For example: After mommy picked me up from school the other day, we had to go to the store. Leona was fussy because mommy had to wake her up from her nap to come and pick me up on time. So, to entertain the whiny, crusty-banana-faced brat in the cart, mommy gave her a single yogurt cup to play with. The Rat loves yogurt. Recently, mommy has been giving her free rein with a spoon to demolish her breakfast yogurt any way The Rat sees fit. It’s disgusting. I have to sit there and primly munch my cinnamon toast while watching my baby sister take an upper-body bath in pink, chunky, dairy product. Hey, I may be an asshole sometimes, but I am a very tidy eater. Mommy calls me an O.C.D. priss, which I think means ‘someone very cool from southern California,’ because I line up all my orange rinds and crusts in a perfect row on the table when I finish them and I rarely need to get my face washed with a mildewy kitchen cloth. (There’s probably a correlation there.) Anyway, I digress. So, Leona had the yogurt cup in her cart seat, mommy was ringing and bagging our cart of groceries in the self-checkout lane, and I was fingering M&Ms, packets of gum, and Snickers bars with wistful eyeballs and a yearning heart. Mommy put her cash in the machine, grabbed the receipt, and turned around to find that Leona had eaten through the foil on the yogurt cup like a woodchuck in heat, and was now tipped back like mommy at a kegger chugging the creamy goodness. Yogurt was everywhere–on her face, dripping down her arms, between her chin and neck, in her mini-pigtails. You have to be kidding me, Leona! mommy snapped, rushing to her side and digging through her purse for wipes. Leona straightened up from a swig, grinned, and breathed a resounding ahhhh like she had just finished off an ice-cold glass of lemonade on a hot summer day. I stood there by the P.O.S. tower of chocolate and watched, amused, impressed, and slightly envious that I never thought of doing this before. Mommy found a used Kleenex in her purse and made a futile attempt to clean the mess. Four seconds later, she dropped an f-bomb and hissed let’s go, Gus, but not before remembering that she had to pay for the yogurt that Leona annihilated. She pulled the cup from Leona’s wet, slathery fingers–Leona screamed bloody murder–and mommy scanned the yogurt. Since she had nowhere to put the messy cup, she just handed it back to Leona to shut her up while simultaneously licking yogurt off her fingers and pulling change from her wallet. All the while the check-out lady was watching mommy with a sad mix of embarrassment, pity, and delight. Finally, we left. There were beads of sweat on mommy’s forehead.
But that’s not all. When we got home, mommy decided we all needed to play outside for a while. She was watering the flowers while me and Leona were tooting around the lawn, looking for woodchips and snails. Alongside of the house, we happenstanced upon a nice plot of mud–the soil that gets dripped on right underneath the hose connection–and since mommy was so busy admiring her pansies, I did not feel it was my duty to prevent Leona from scooping a big mess of that mud up and putting it in her mouth. It was hilarious. She chewed, and gave me her crinkly face that sort of makes her look like she’s special, then she started sticking her tongue in and out, in and out, so some of the mud drooled out of her mouth onto her chin in a black, saliva-y slobber. It was the perfect mix of gross and awesome. All the while her eyes were alive and bright with mischief. I giggled, so, eager to make me laugh some more, she giggled and went in for another scoop. This was when mommy noticed. She bolted across the yard and lifted Leona up from the crime scene. Dammit, Gus! she roared, and my mouth fell open. What. In the Fuck. Was she yelling at me for? I wasn’t spitting out earthworm burrows with a shitty grin on my face! You know better! she continued shouting as she walked Leona through the patio door to the kitchen to clean her up. I picked up a rock and threw it in the direction of her bitchy, accusatory tone. So much for an alliance. I don’t want The Rat on my fucking team if I’m taking all the heat for her bullshit.
To round out the day, Leona took a nose dive in some dog shit. This was by far the most heinous offense. Mommy left us alone for two seconds to pull some weeds, and that was all Leona needed to bathe herself in some serious dog stank. I feel as though this was God’s way of punishing mommy for blaming the mud-pie eating on the Gusman. Upon noticing that we had made our way to the side-yard, a.k.a. Official Shit Station for Brisket, she sprinted across the lawn in what seemed like slow motion. Leona was crawling, and mommy scooped her up from behind at lightning speed to find the entire front of her Daddy Loves Me onesie smeared with poop. What was more, The Rat had two gigantic turds squished between her fingers in not one, but both of her hands. Mommy actually screamed, panicked. With gagging yecht sounds every two seconds, she did the straight-armed, poopy-baby sprint across the yard into the house. I found them five minutes later in the bathroom. Piles of poop-stained wash-cloths and hand towels lay in a stinky pile in the sink. Leona was crying, and mommy looked like she was about to. Eventually, both of us were in the bath tub covered in suds, and all was well again. Daddy came home early that day. He popped his head into the bathroom and asked why the hell we were getting baths at one in the afternoon. Mommy gave him something of a murderous look, squinched her eyes up into little poison slivers, and disappeared into the kitchen. Apparently, daddy had reminded her that it was after noon.
So, you see I have some strong competition. This day happened in the wake of me getting my toy drawers back in my room after two weeks of them being stashed in the garage, high up on the naughty boy shelf. Mommy and daddy have not locked me in my room lately, so I have not been forced to hurl my belongings at the closed door; this apparently warrants me getting my puzzles, dinosaurs, and art supplies back. Leona has taken full advantage of my sporadic bout of good behavior by lashing out with some of her worst antics to date, and now I am getting less attention than ever. This might mean war. She is supposed to be the angelic, obedient, sweet Princess Rat Baby for all the days of her life. ME, I AM the Uncouth Son. The Gusman is the big prick on THIS block.
Ain’t no little poopy-fingered, mud-eatin’, yogurt suckin’ bitch sister gonna take that title away. You’ll see.