Choosing the Wrench

There’s a scene in Good Will Hunting where Matt Damon’s and Robin Williams’ characters are discussing the abuse they suffered as children.  Damon’s character, Will, tells of his foster father’s drunken rages:

Will: He used to just put a belt, a stick, and a wrench on the kitchen table and say, “Choose”.
Sean: Well, I gotta go with the belt there, Vanna.
Will: I used to go with the wrench.
Sean: Why?
Will:  Because f– him, that’s why.

Ken and I both have been told from time to time that we’re stubborn people.  Whenever we spot proof of it, whenever one sees the other picking the most dreadful option in a set of given choices for no other reason than to stick it to the person doing the offering, we refer to it as “choosing the wrench”.

So today, I’m faced with the following options of errands to run, el parento solo, with six children under the age of ten:

1. grocery shopping 
2. library trip
3. post office, interior 
4. Lowes
5. consignment shop

Some, obviously are more pressing than others, but all need to be done.  I know I’m not going to get more than one out of the way today, so I ask you- which one is the wrench?

‘Cause I’ll just go ahead and pick that one.


    • says

      I dread going to the post office. And it’s not just the fact that the lobby is smaller than the interior of my bathtub, there’s just some sense of misery that hangs over the place.

  1. says

    They all suck. Which one is more difficult depends on the circumstances – how long your grocery list, will the trip to the consignment shop involve trying clothes on anyone, etc.

    Still… post office. *shudder* That might be the wrench right there.

  2. says

    #5 reminds me of taking my four kids to a consignment shop a few months ago that ended with the owner telling me it’s best to shop there without children. I thought they were well-behaved considering we’d just had ice cream next door and there are five million items in that tiny little shop. Anyway, the memory still haunts me whenever I consider going again so that would be my wrench.

    • says

      The one we go to is just for kids, is horrifyingly cramped, and when all of us are there, we effectively block any more people from entering, it’s so small.
      I think the ladies who run the place are scared of us.

  3. says

    Library! I am sure I get raised eyebrows …but I let my kids run amok at the library and we check out an enormous amount of books that annoy many I am sure.

    • says

      And both horrible choices, “Do you go without food, or do you go without intellectual stimulation?”
      Not that my kids pick anything more intellectually stimulating than Magic Treehouse.

  4. says

    This reminds me of the Everybody Loves Raymond episode when Debra tells Ray about going to the grocery store with the kids and they knocked over the salsa display. She described how the management came over the loudspeaker and said: “Mrs. Barone, please remove your children from Ethnic Foods”. Ray asked if she managed to get to the bank, and she said: “No, Ray. The kids were a little bit too picante”.

    The post office is the wrench, and I would choose that – you can always order pizza and the kids can run around in their underwear. Consignment shop – well, if you have to try things on, maybe. Lowe’s – make Ken go instead. Wish I was there to help out! (Although why would you want to leave your kids with a total stranger you met over the INTERNET?!??!?!?)

  5. says

    Love that movie and love that scene. I would have to say Post Office, Long lines \, nothing kid friendly or interesting to look at, it’s usually pretty quiet in there, and you have to stand in close proximity to annoyed strangers.

  6. says

    Okay, I know you’ve already chosen (though I don’t know which one) but grocery store is definitely the worst…because it lasts the longest and has the least interesting diversions. And a budget. That you have to pay attention to. That involves MATH. UGH!

  7. says

    Consignment stores creep me out. I know they are a bargain, but the place near us smells like mothballs and I always feel dirty in there.


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