Do you ever have the blues? Well I have the perfect remedy.
I believe in the power of macaroni and cheese. The soft, warm noodles and the cheesiest, creamy cheese remind one of simpler times. A big bowl of mac n’ cheese at the end of a terrible day is the equivalence of a bright rainbow during a storm. Macaroni and cheese is my dream come true.
I acquired a babysitting job for the entire summer this past year. I found the ad in the newspaper so I had never met the family, the Grubers. I quickly found out that the children were demonic and the parents were literally losing their minds. I had fallen into a terrible trap.
Jon, the father of the family, worked from home in the basement, but he hired me as a nanny anyways because he has no control over his two vicious girls. His rule was, “you can have macaroni and cheese only once a week,” because of how unhealthy it is. This is the same man who literally supplements potato chips for vegetables, so it didn’t make much sense to me.
Everything else in this maniac’s kitchen was disgusting, so I ended up making macaroni more than once one week. The girls yelled and screamed and threatened to tell their dad. The last thing I wanted was to have a meeting alone with Jon Gruber, the five-foot troll of a greasy man. I threw away the already prepared noodles and told the girls to never speak of them again.
The girls told their dad anyways and I got the lecture I had expected. I was banned from eating their macaroni and cheese, yet I still had to provide the delicious meal to the evil Gruber girls.
All I wanted all summer was a big bowl of macaroni and cheese, all to myself. Every time we ate any kind of meal though, there ended up being all sorts of objects on my plate, courtesy of the devil children; crayon bits, liquid soap, a shoe. If I told Jon anything they did, he simply laughed and told me it was my fault and that I need to control them more, even though he can’t even do it himself.
These girls were the epitome of evil. Not one day went by where I didn’t want to lash out and brutally strike both of those girls. Near the last day of summer, I couldn’t take it anymore. They were playing outside and before I could even react, they had poured a mixture of mud and rocks all over my car. This was a huge problem to me considering I love my car more than most things. I love it enough to give it a name, Drew. I screamed more than I had ever screamed in my life. It didn’t even faze them. I proceeded to tell them to wash it off, which was a bad idea. They began scrubbing my car with beach towels. The rocks and sand scraped at Drew’s paint.
After the confrontation with the Gruber girls, Drew was in pain. Little scratches and scrapes covered his hood. I broke down crying because I knew there was nothing I could do. Their parents would never be on my side.
I rushed straight home at the end of my long day and cooked myself a box of macaroni and cheese. I moped the whole time, watching the water start to boil with leftover tears in my eyes. I stirred in the milk and the mysterious powdered cheese and sat down nose to nose with my big bowl of macaroni. “This is going to be good,” I thought to myself.
Taking one bite of that macaroni made me think. I thought back to kindergarten when my mom used to cook peas for me to eat with my macaroni and cheese because it rhymed. I thought back to when I had no duties or responsibilities, I didn’t have to deal with stress or hate, and I didn’t have bills that left me worrying. It felt almost perfect again. I awoke from my daydream and continued to indulge in my little slice of cheesy heaven.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.