Saturday morning in our house means chores. I’m known as the general manager, which is a kind of chore, right? Sure it is. The negotiation of chores in our house is one effective way to avoid the actual doing of chores. It goes something like this:
Magnets get moved until there is shalom in the home. Or until the general manager declares the negotiations over and begins shouting about doing the actual chores. This week, though, the girls brought an old grievance to the family meeting: allowances. I’m not opposed to allowances. Kids can learn a lot from money management. I just can’t remember to give them regularly and I never have actual cash in my purse. I’ve asked, but these kids won’t let me swipe my debit card. So, we asked how much allowance they thought was fair.
Piper opened the negotiations. “$400 sounds reasonable.”
Laughing all around. “How about $1 per week?” Her dad countered.
Piper let out a loud sigh. “$100 is enough. That’s fine.”
“I’m willing to raise my offer to $2 per week.”
Dad tried to rationalize. “We don’t seem to be getting anywhere. You’re supposed to suggest a number closer to ours.”
“So, you don’t want an allowance?” I asked.
“Wait,” Piper said, “how much does a Lalaloopsy cost? That’s how much I want.”
I shook my head. “I don’t even know what that is.”
“I think $5 is a good amount for me,” Sissy suggested. Ever the voice of reason. “Or maybe we should get $1 for our ages.” Did she just up her own offer?
Piper, who claims she doesn’t know her numbers, did the math and came up immediately with the difference. “That’s $4 more. Why does she get more than me? What’s up with that?”
“I do more chores,” Sissy said. “I get more money. I’m older. That’s fair.”
“Fair? What’s up with that? How many Lalaloopsies does she get?” Suddenly, Lalaloopsy became our currency and we were stuck in a Seinfeld episode.
Clearly, the general manager is going to need a raise.