“The whole house smells like a garbage can,” my teenage daughter tossed out as she stepped out of the kitchen, her mouth full of avocado toast. 

It does smell bad in here, ugh, these stories always end badly…the last one had a squirrel tail my dog brought me as a gift at the finale. 

I inspected the obvious suspects - fridge is broccoli and bean free and not super stinky, check. The trash is nearly empty, and after sticking my head into it much further than necessary I can confidently declare it is not this either. Both toilets clean, check. Dammit where is that smell coming from? 

I turn on the bedroom light and see it - a size 13 footprint with the matte haze of, oh no, dog shit.

My chin drops to my chest with the realization that I will not be sitting down with my can of wine and cross stitch to watch A Quiet Place as previously planned. Apparently I will be cleaning my entire house while my kids obliviously watch James Charles videos on their phones instead. Fuck. 

I begin the walk down the hall toward the vacuum and mop closet when an alarming thought reaches into my head and pops my eyes open - my husband is currently driving around in my car with those goddamn pooey feet. Yuck. 

I pause to shake my head when I catch a shimmery glimpse of the same footprints walking from my bedroom, down the hall and turning into the kitchen. Like a dog trailing a cadaver I methodically pace the hall, counting each gross deposit, and entering the kitchen to find the culprit we smelled earlier in front of the fridge. 

I popped my can of rosé and took a long swig before putting some Beyoncé on the bluetooth speaker and getting to work. If Formation can’t get this house clean, I don’t know what can. 

I send a text to my husband, “oy, bruh, can you leave your shoes on the porch when you get home? Apparently they are having a deeply obsessive relationship with an old pile of poop. K thanks byeeeeeeeee.” 

The response is a GIF of John Mulaney slapping his forehead and sliding out of a chair so I know he feels bad and realizes the magnitude of my frustration immediately. If I’m lucky I’ll get some fro yo out of this tragedy…fingers crossed and a mini high five for my friend guilt!

As I fill my house with the smell of Pine Sol and Clorox Wipes (it’s poop not organic peanut butter so Method is gonna sit this one out) I think of how thankful I am I don’t live in the olden days of hand washing on my knees with horse piss or whatever craziness they used in their buckets. It’s warm, I have booze and Bey, and I’m in my jersey hammer pants so it could be worse. 

The bedroom door opens and the teenager emerges and pauses, lifting her Beats from her ear. “Smells better, was it throw up or poop?” 

“Poop,” I calmly answer, mopping the end of the hall.

“Yeah? Gross.” Headphones return to ears, door closes, and my beloved perro rounds the corner to see what I’m doing. We share a look and I try to glare at her but that squishy little bulldog face gets me every single time and I soften. I smile at her and she sits, as if to punctuate our conversation, then lifts her little legs and scoots her butt on the floor around the corner and out of sight.