Cassie: Max, take a sponge and wipe that up, huh?
Max: I don’t do sponges.
Cassie: Ummm….If you make a sticky, milky mess like that, you need to wipe it up.
Max: Sponges smell extremely bad.
Cassie: My sponges don’t EVER smell bad. Because I change them often. And after each use, I rinse them out with hot water and wring them dry. The worst thing you can do is leave a sopping wet sponge sitting around in the bottom of the sink. Sometimes your father does that…leaves the sponge in the sink. That’s just a germ party…and the sponge starts to stink. But MY sponges never smell. Nope. Never. I am meticulous with my sponges.
Max: (looking hard at me) YOUR sponges?
Max: You have some serious “sponge issues,” Mom. (He makes the quote mark gesture with his fingers.)
Cassie: Use a paper towel, then, to wipe up that spillage. Come on. Do it. I’m not kidding. Not your maid.
Max gets a sheet of paper towel, dabs at the milk puddle with brisk but inefficient swipes. He tosses the paper towel wad toward the trash can, misses the can, sees that I’m watching him, so then picks up the paper towel, makes a better, more successful discard attempt and leaves the kitchen. As soon as he’s left, I get the sponge, add hot water and a dab of dish washing soap to the yellow surface, and proceed to re-wipe the entire eating surface where Max has dined. I return to the sink, run hot water over the sponge to rinse it, wring the sponge dry and deposit it in the wire sponge holder on the counter. That’s where the sponge is air drying, right now…and I am confident, absolutely confident I tell you, that my sponge, I mean THE sponge, will smell optimally fresh…for the next counter wipe or dish scrub by the husband, or the eldest son…or the mother.