Dad: This meeting is called to order at 7:23 pm on Thursday September 13th. Let the minutes show that we have a quorum, only the kid at college, um, uh…
Dad: Thank you. Nick is absent, so I have his proxy.
Son2: He gave his proxy to me.
Dad: You are not eligible to exercise proxies until you are sixteen.
Son2: What? (full body gesticulation with eye roll and then barely audible mumble) That’s bullshit.
Mom: Can we hurry it up?
Dad: This family meeting has been called to discuss the shoe situation. I want to go over the Hierarchy of Shoe Storage and review appropriate behavior modifications.
Mom: Oh, for Pete’s sakes. I have work to do.
Dad: I have the floor. And speaking of the floor, have we noticed that is impossible to get from the door to the living room without tripping over eighteen pairs of shoes? It’s gone way past a messy house, it’s a safety hazard. I am going to trip and fall and rupture an achilles and have to limp around in a boot on one of those wheeled walkers that you kneel on for eight weeks, and I will not, I repeat, NOT enjoy that.
Son2: Maybe you should stretch every now and then.
Dad: Irregardless of my stretching—
Mom: Regardless! It’s regardless! Irregardless is not a word. Let the minutes reflect that your father is butchering the English language.
Daughter: Duly noted.
Dad (unfazed and stoic): Regardless. Shoe Storage Hierarchy is as follows: you are allowed one pair of shoes at point of egress.
Daughter: How do you spell egress?
Dad: These should be the shoes you were just wearing and plan to put back on in the very near future. If the shoes are not going to be used when you leave, they belong under your cubby in the laundry room. We forced an architect at gunpoint to design a laundry room with individual lockers instead of a formal dining room. We are damn well going to use it. You have room for three pairs of shoes there. These should be your everyday shoes, frequently worn. Dress shoes should go in your room closet. Shoes that aren’t frequently worn can also go in the coat closet. And, finally, shoes that are muddy or old or stinky go in the garage. Door, cubby, closet, garage. It’s not that hard, people.
Daughter: But Bufflin eats the ones in the garage.
Dad: Only the ones that stink.
Daughter: But that’s all my Uggs.
Dad: Try wearing socks.
Daughter (barely audible): That’s bullshit.
Mom: Move to adjourn.
Mom: All in favor?
Mom, Son2, Daughter: Aye!