Afloat on a whole grain cheerio! by Matthew Harris

Mom called out my name as she madly dashed out the kitchen door!

“Matthew,” you need to get ready for school AT ONCE!

Mister Gruff (the grizzled bearish bus driver) just honked the horn! He will not wait!

Matter of fact this, cartoonish caricature curmudgeon rarely even slowed, but expected students to leap like a pterodactyl while the bus continued to travel at a fast clip!

Her angry voice sounded muffled and could barely be heard among the clatter and din of the screen mesh slamming against the wooden portal that thus far separated me from the whirled wide web waiting for the write moment!

Just then, a wish was softly uttered to no one in particular!

The purring voice appeared to emanate from that resident disembodied miss cheviot spirit purportedly a friendly ghost who unwittingly possessed the uncanny ability to communicate via mental telepathy!

No sooner did the thought sans (if only there would be some way to avoid going to school and avoid dealing with the “Lizard” and “Volcano” two teachers who took an especial loathing toward this geeky and nerdy kid) barely coalesced in my mind that bitta bing bitta bang – prestidigitation wrought wish come true!

I suddenly realized (as if in a dream) that my whole body shrunk and tumbled into what looked like the most humungous sized bowl of Cheerios cereal grain this side of Narberth!

No matter escape virtually impossible, I merely bobbed inside the deep dish of milk and cheerios poured by smallish sized hands moments ago!

With above average auditory ability, my ears (now practically infinitesimal buds) discerned evident familiar footsteps from afar.

The quick pitter-patter of approaching syncopated sinister sounding click and clack tapping on the wooden floor set me panicking and madly splashing about (in the I LOVE CHEERIOS BOWL) attempting to hide from mommy!

She entered with fury and slammed the front door with such wrath that seismologists probably suspected a deadly earthquake about to wreak havoc in Lower Merion!

“Matthew Scott, I will not let you play hooky!”

Without delay, I quickly and gingerly glided thru the mass of soggy cheerios! Although most of the general mills “O” shaped cereal pieces happened to be saturated with milk, I did manage to locate one Siamese twin cheerios that allowed me to avoid drowning and perhaps ending up in the stomach of Twinkles (also known as Twinkie) the family cat!

She now loomed large like some magnified feline with one ferocious meow!

I latched both hands (for dear life) the underside of these fused Cheerios and tried to keep out of sight from those eyes that burned like red hot coal, and expected to be shaken from my precarious mooring from another bellow from mommy dearest or swallowed alive by Johah the whale of a feline!

Odd. Nothing but Silence filled the air as those coeval sets of two dark eyes and keen horn british shaped ears scanned the dining area for any sign of this prankster of a son!

Fear gripped me like never before as that lumbering gait inched ever closer to the unconsumed now quite soggy bowl of cereal!

“For Pete's sake” she roared (kind of like Tony the Tiger in those Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes commercials of yore childhood), where in tarnation did you go, my little honey bunches of oats”!

Endearments (with references to some tasty morsel) frequently employed in the past when this goofy boy played harmless pranks, which mom never seemed to appreciate!

She never appreciated creative juices within her only precocious offspring, who she ranked less than a fallen angel!


Without peering into the congealed blend of Cheerios slush (which slowly began to metamorphose into some miniature bog), she hunted around the more likely (and previous secret) hideouts blaring my name (in tandem with a string of colorful expletives), as a preliminary wrathful warning of some unpleasant fate that awaited this only not so prodigal son!

As those dreaded footsteps finally faded further from the eating area and began to traipse upstairs (with a logical presumption I scuttled either under my bed or in the closet), an attempt got made to pull myself up over the lip of the very slippery cereal bowl!

This feat on a par with Olympic trained athlete competing in the most difficult human race!

No matter how much effort I exerted to hoist this lighter than a dry Cheerio up over the edge (analogous to performing a pole vault), the lack of any foothold found me cascading with a splash into amidst the drenched kernels of cereal!

Aha! Another thought occurred!

Maybe I could vacuum up piranha style every last morsel and swell up like a small-scale beach ball! Then I might be able to roll back and forth and knock this darned plastic bowl on the floor!

This idea quickly discarded with the idea of bloating like an engorged tick left an awful taste in my mouth!

With one final exertion, I managed to summon one last ounce of effort from every cell of this shrunken being to perform a bank shot and catapult myself over the curled lip of this surreal fish bowl!

Like some free floating radical trapeze artist, the defiance per the laws of gravity sent me scaling high above the fruitful plane!

A sudden gust of wind from the fuming female furnace tossed, whipped and nearly creamed this itty-bitty boy into smithereens!

Fortunate that the banging screen door got wrenched awry saving this bite size kid from getting crushed!

Although just a whirling infinitesimal speck, I felt a cheerful disposition especially since circumstance carried me out of that ticky-tacky box (on the hillside) away from cruel mother who never failed to dish out fire and brimstone authoritarianism!