Monday, November 06, 2006

Small town on coast of Washington ...

gripped in deadly struggle for power.

No, this is not a headline from the local paper, nor does it have anything to do with politics or the local electric company. This battle is being fought from one end of my house to the other for control of the on/off switch on my computer hard drive.

Let me introduce you to the combatants.

In the black, swivel, high-back office chair we have yours truly, Michelle Hoppe, romance author.

On the floor, in cute little pink shirt and pants, binky in mouth, hands and knees working as a team, is my seven month old grand daughter.

It is my desire to have said switch left in the on position and Bailey's desire to simply push it in and out. Matters not to her if it's on or off, it's the thrill of victory she is going for. Pleas from me about lost files and crashed hard drives not withstanding, Bailey is like a robot on auto pilot, programmed for one purpose only: to crawl, push, twist and scream in her efforts to meet the objective of pushing the button with the little green light.

A typical battle for supremacy goes something like this:

Bailey, cute little gurgling noises echoing around her, fakes grandma into believing she is engrossed in the current Disney movie blaring from the television.

Grandma turns to computer to write, unaware that little crawler is inching her way toward the desk, her mouth set on silent running to forestall warning anyone (me) of her approach. Her goal within reach, Bailey extends a pudgy little finger toward the glowing green light just as I catch movement out the corner of my eye and react with the speed of a twenty-year old. Scooping baby up, I place her back on the blanket in front of the tv, toy's heaped around her, some with little buttons of their own, in a vein attempt to refocus her attention on something else.

Now aware that snuggly little grand daughter has once again set her sites on my hard-drive, I return to work with one eye on the screen and one on the bundle of pink, determined to prove her stamina is greater than mine. Back and forth the combatants jockey for position. Little does she realize, I have trained for this struggle once before. Yes, I am an experienced, battle weary veteran of the shiny button wars. I earned a purple heart two and half years ago, when training Katelyn that certain things in grandmas house are off limits to little girls. Having succeeded once, I will triumph again or break another fingernail trying.

Katelyn, now aware of how important it is to leave grandmas computer alone will intercede at times, mostly because she gets tired of listening to the crying.

I know, I'm not supposed to cry at my age, but darn it, you all know what a hard shut down of a computer will do to your current project.

The problem with Katie's intervention is it only last about as long as her attention span which is seventeen point six seconds. Barely enough time for me to get comfy and take a sip of coffee. Once free of Katelyn's arms, Bailey rolls onto her hands and knees. Crawling over toys like a hum-v, one track mind reengaged, she heads back towards the light. No longer attempting to hide her intentions, it is now a race to see if she can get to the button before grandma gets her legs uncrossed and sets the coffee cup down without spilling its contents on the keyboard to grab her before the 'click' sounds.

Score one for grandma, as I snatch her up by the back of her shirt and plop her on my knee. For the seven hundred and sixty fifth time I explain why she is not allowed to touch the computer. I might as well be talking to myself, because the rug rat is squirming to get down so she can implement attack plan bravo-charlie-b345ddf. I however swing into action with battle plan warmbottleinbabiesmouth, followed by a victory dance as the little angel falls to sleep.

A cease fire has been called for the next two hours while Bailey recharges her batteries with a much needed nap. Katelyn is also napping, so I have a window of opportunity to get some work done. There is only one problem with my window - I too need a nap after the morning skirmishes so if you will excuse me I think I'll just lean back in my chair and close my eyes for a few minutes.

(reposted from my blog)

1 comment:

  1. That was hilarious for me---I know, I know, just tiring for you. Aren't grandchildren precious?