multi-colored string.

When I was little, we had a babysitter.  It was my sister and myself.  Sarah, my sister, is two years younger than I am… she was then, too.  I think I was around six and she was around four.  Anyways, we had this babysitter… actually two babysitters… both girls.  They were young teenagers.  They asked us if they could bring their boyfriends over.

– Okay.

– But you can’t tell your parents.

– Okay.

The boys came over and it was weird.  One couple went and locked themselves in my parents room.  And then we couldn’t find the other couple.  Sarah and I thought it was kinda a fun game to look for them… hike and seek, if you will.  We looked everywhere… errrywhere… couldn’t find ’em.

– Oh well.

– Yeah, oh well.

– I’m gonna go play figurines on my bed.

I really loved playing with figurines.

So I climbed up the side of our bunkbeds to go play figurines, but as I peeked over the top, I found the other couple.

– Hey!  Get outta my bed!

– Get lost!

– This is my bed!

– Rachel!  GO!  AWAY!

– No!  I want to play figurines!

– Rachel, if you don’t go away right now I will tell your parents you were bad and you let us bring our boyfriends over.

– Okay.  Sorry.

And I got scared.  So I went and sat in the closet.  And I had one of those toys that was like a pipe, but it had a piece of multi-colored string that ran through it when you blew it.  Do you know what I’m talking about?  Probably not.  One of those toys I think every child had… but only me.  I don’t think it was even mine… it was everybody’s.

Anyways, I sat there in the closet and would blow on this pipe toy thing and the multi-colored circle of string would just go around and around in circles… until it didn’t.  Until I somehow got it tied in knots around itself and the buttons on a coat in the closet.  I panicked.  Oh no!  I broke the toy!  And it’s not even mine! I couldn’t even get it untangled.  It just hung there, from the coat buttons.  I was so scared, so ashamed.  I decided I would hide in there forever… I must’ve been in there for a good half hour… which is pretty much forever to a six-year-old.

I heard my mom come home.  Scared, I stayed in the closet.  I didn’t hear how the girls left, but I heard them leave.  A few minutes later and the closet door opened…

– Rachel, there you are.  What are you doing in the closet?

– I dunno… I just thought I’d stay in here.

I was so afraid I was going to get in trouble for breaking the string toy.  Terrified.

– Come out here.

– Okay.

Then Sarah was there as well… we were all in the living room… Mom sat us down.

I remember thinking, “This is it.  She knows about the string toy.  I’ve been bad one too many times… I’m really gonna get it this time.”

– Are you girls okay?

– Yeah.  Fine.

Sarah and I look at each other.  Give each other the, “I’m not gonna say anything… You better not say anything” look.  And then all the sudden Sarah blurts out…

– Our babysitters brought over boys!

– What?!

Very surprised, I soon realized that THIS is what we should be focusing on… not the broken string toy attached to Mom’s winter coat.

– Yeah!  And they locked themselves in your and Dad’s room!  And they got on my bed and wouldn’t let me play figurines on it!

Well, Mom was pissed.  And she called the girls’ mothers and made them come over, apologize and give us our money back.  I remember standing slightly behind my mom while it all went down, with my “Yeah, that’s right… Try to make out on my figurine playground again… Just try…” face on.  It was quite satisfying.

This all came back to me when I found this woman’s art…

It reminds me of the multi-colored string… hanging from the coat… with the plastic pipe attached.

4 thoughts on “multi-colored string.

  1. Rach, I LOVED that toy. I know exactly what you are talking about. My brother and I both got those in our stockings one year. I totally forgot about it until I read this. I want that thing back.

    AND I LOVE YOUR BANGS!!

  2. I was just reminiscing not too long ago about that toy. You blew through a plastic pipe that was connected to a little plastic Coca-Cola bottle (which I think was the main attraction) that a multi-color piece of string went round and round through as you blew into it. You picked it out at the Armidillo Christmas Bazaar. It was a lovely toy; made no sounds and was quite amusing. On the other hand, our friend’s son, Nick, who was busy,busy running, climbing, hiding under racks of clothing picked out a loud pop gun. It was a joke among friends for years comparing Nick’s wild child days with Rachel’s playing quietly with her figurines. Anyways, I was recently looking for it in hopes of finding it in some old boxes of toys. I guess we threw it out since it got knotted up and tangled in a coat button. Great memory. Oh yeah, about those babysitters, that still pisses me off.

  3. Wow, I thought that kind of thing only happened in movies! The most trouble my babysitters ever got in was letting me stay up late to watch 101 Dalmations because neither one of us could remember my bedtime (I was oblivious…).

    And the multi-colored string toys? Great, except I could never work them!

  4. abs: YES! i knew we were friends for a reason… i’m gonna search the ends of the earth to try and find you that toy for a wedding present.

    momma: omg, your closing line made me laugh SO hard. and i never heard that story about nick and myself… but i could have guessed as much about him as a child…

    kate: you rebel, you.

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