tub rules

non-sequitur — does not follow


Periodically I revisit those compressed, wild, exhausting times that were my girls’ preschool years. Sometimes I remember funny things, or things that went particularly well. This is one of those,

except this story didn’t originate with us. I saw a good thing and I hung on to it. For about four years or so, in fact — until I needed it for ourselves.

The story belongs to my found-big brother, Rick. On a sad weekend, me and my fiancé, My Sweetie, ended up at Rick & Joanne’s house by Camp Lejeune. Dinner was finished, Rick and M and I were relaxing, Joanne had gathered their toddler/preschool girls up into the bathtub for necessary washing. Splashing ensued.

Joanne walked down the stairs and past us, saying something, probably about no towels. So the little ones were alone in the tub, not anyone’s preference. I figured Rick would get up and go upstairs: he had been a lifeguard, too, and 2” of water can be deadly.

Instead he leaned back and threw his voice up the stairwell. “Time to say the Tub Rules!”

“Tub rule number ONE!” <hmnmbmnn> “THAT’S right! NO STANDING!”

“Tub rule number TWO!” <ndnmnmmgg> “THAT’S right! NO DRINKING!”

“Tub rule number THREE!” (About this time, Joanne walks past us and up the stairs.) <wahmnmbms> “THAT’S right! WATER STAYS IN THE TUB! Good job!”

Rick leaned back towards us and calmly said, “I figure if I can hear them talking, they’re not drowning,” and took another swig of beer.

M laughed and said, “Shouldn’t you have a rule, ‘No peeing in the tub?’”

“Nah. The ‘no drinking’ rule covers that.”


When we had two toddlers of our own, we instituted The Tub Rules. But we never ended up using them for a drowning-check. Rick still holds the trophy for Best Use of Tub Rules.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.