The disposal makes a distinctive sound when there’s something stuck inside, but the sounds aren’t distinctive enough to identify the obstruction. It could be a harmless sippy cup valve. It could be a sharp bone fragment. It could be a brown recluse. Regardless of what is in there, the only way to retrieve it is to stick your hand in past your wrist and feel around in the darkness.
I checked the switch to make sure there was no chance of the horror movie gears grinding my fingers to nubs. I held my breath and reached down until I felt metal. I began fumbling around the blades to find the source of the problem and then . . . I felt something. It was hard and sharp, but flexible. I gritted my teeth and picked up what I was sure would be a bug. As soon as my eyes made contact with it, I knew I would reflexively fling it far, far away. It still had to come out of the disposal. With every muscle in my body tensed so tight I could have touched the ceiling if anyone had walked in and startled me, I pulled out my hand. Staring anxiously, my fingers emerged and I saw black legs and they were attached to a black body and as I heard my scream escaping, I saw the plastic ring attached to the toy spider. I stopped screaming.
My heart racing, I double checked to confirm that I was holding a spider ring. Then, I looked around to see if anyone had come to rescue the screaming woman. The sounds of children playing in the next room reassured me that my stupidity had gone unnoticed. I finally exhaled. The offending ring was punished for its’ crime with banishment to the trash. I paused, picked it up again and put it in the plastic recycling. I walked to the couch to calm myself. Evan didn’t even look up from his Lego Batman game. “Why did you scream mom?”