My three children are all teenagers now and like many today, they are home from school before my husband or I are home from work. I am generally the last to return home at the end of the day, and while my own housecleaning habits see me tidying up the kitchen before I leave for work, I am not likely to find it this way upon my return. My keen eyes are trained to decode the evidence before me and I know just what to nag about. Because my kids now know: I am highly specialized CSI expert. I am a Cuisine Scene Investigator.
“Nobody move!” I shout, with the anticipated impact: none of my teenagers has moved nor has any intention of moving. Securing the scene is not as challenging they make it out to be on TV.
I begin my preliminary analysis:
I study the spatter stains and I know right away that my son has made himself a big glass of chocolate milk.
I examine the trail and I know my daughter has been into the popcorn.
I analyze the dishevelment of the dishes and I know my oldest son has emptied his lunch bag.
As I evaluate all the physical evidence and the possibilities I try not to jump to conclusions, but it hard not to. And as I walk around collecting evidence I make sure that my kids do not interfere with my examination of the data.
“Don’t touch that!” I shout.
“But I was just about to put that away.” they lie.
“Too late! I caught you! You are now one of my suspects!”
“You should not be eating cookies right before dinner!” I bark at my son. How does she know? I see the querying look in his eyes. “You left the cookie bag completely open in the pantry!” He rolls his eyes.
“Did I not tell you that the ice cream was for dessert?” testing my daughter. How does she know? says the look in her eyes. “You could have at least rinsed off the ice cream scoop before putting it in the sink.”
Even today, I walked into the kitchen and found a half-filled coffee travel mug on the counter and know that my husband, too, is home from work. Clearly he did not pick up on the trail of evidence already before him. Clearly he is not a cuisine scene investigator – he’s just another instigator.
I finish wiping down this scene and catalog the evidence before the dogs decide to catalog it themselves (knowing the dogs they’re already accessories to many of their crimes that will go unsolved). I then begin my own cuisine scene and start making dinner. Sigh.
CSI … not for sissies … only for moms.