Apparently I missed the demand to "let my people go" sometime late last week, because on Saturday a plague of locusts descended upon my house. And I didn't even get the courtesy of raining frogs to prepare me.
On Saturday afternoon, we had friends over for a cookout. When I say "friends" I mean that it's a woman who is friends with Wifey, her utterly worthless husband, and their spawn. There are three spawn, stair-stepped at 2-4-6. This is slightly younger than our children, but not so bad that they couldn't all play together.
Or they could have, if only the spawn hadn't been a ravening pack of malicious barbarians intent on wandering through the house on a quest of destruction.
I did the barbecuing, which was great: I like fire, I like singeing meat, and since it was raining I got to retreat to the backyard for privacy from time to time. Never have so few hamburgers cooked for so long.
Now, when I'm over at somebody's house as a guest at a barbecue, I generally do two things: I try to help with the barbecue so I can learn a few new tips and tricks, and I keep an eye on my children so they don't wander all over the damn place and cause trouble.
But I'm old-fashioned like that. Mr. Locust felt no such compunction, only occasionally telling the eldest spawn not to wander off. Typically this comment was addressed to empty air because he had, in fact, wandered away to tear down the curtains in an adjacent room or to try to break the heads off the Barbie dolls.
The youngest spawn spent most of her time trying to eat inappropriate things and peeing on the steps. The spawn in the middle was largely absent from the proceedings, having wandered two yards away and gotten fascinated with a chained-up man-eating pit bull.
But if her parent's weren't concerned, I wasn't going to be, either. And I vigorously deny that I put the steak sauce on her that enticed the dogs into a feeding frenzy.
About an hour into the plague, my daughter leaned over and whispered loudly "I can't wait for them to leave!"
"Me neither!" I responded in kind. "But we have to humor them for mommy's sake!"
Finally, after several fistfights and repeated journeys by Wifey to the upper floors of the house to retrieve one of the spawn, my daughter, or me, they left. We received a heart-felt apology from Wifey once they'd gone that went something like this:
"Dear family, I am so sorry about what just happened. If you would like to spend the rest of the day playing Wii, I will not complain, and I assure you that I will fix you any dinner that you wish tonight as penance for what you have all just suffered, if you will only forgive me for this."
"No problem!" said the girl. She always settles too early.
"I want pizza and ice cream!" said the boy. He's greedy, but easily forgives.
"I want nudity," I said. I then leaned in close and propositioned her in a filthy fashion not fit for a family-oriented humor blog.
She readily agreed to my proposition out of guilt. And let's be honest: guilt sex is second only to make-up sex.
I already invited the Locust Family back next week.