Those four little words comprising the Sunday Scribblings prompt this week are what I hear from the mouths of my three children on a near constant basis. I've no doubt that I used them myself throughout my childhood, although I reckon I did so with less whinging and more fear of the repercussions of asking such a question. "Fear" if I were posing the question to my father, who could be counted on for a reaction of the not-so-nice kind whenever a child dared to "give him lip." Yeah, "do I have to" would have been perceived as such.
I have a theory that, as we age, we stop asking that question. As we become heads-of-household instead of mere minions-of-household, most things we do because, yeah, we have to. What's the point of asking the question when you know the answer? [Like right then: why did I ask that question when I knew the answer? Hmmmmm.]
I know, I know, you're wondering if I have to keep digressing.
Do I have to vacuum? Yeah, unless I want the dog's hair to form a natural-fiber carpet on the hardwood floors.
Do I have to hang the wash on the clothesline? Yeah, if I stand any hope of offsetting my incredibly large carbon footprint or my larger-still energy bill.
Do I have to take the dog for a walk every morning and night? Yeah, if I hope to have any chance of her not stalking me day-in and day-out.
Do I have to eventually intervene between Youngest and Daughter? Yeah, if I don't want neighbors calling Child Protective Services.
Do I have to ______________ (fill any household chore into the blank)? Yeah, if I expect to find a damn thing in the house after Youngest has "played" throughout it all day.
Do I have to tickle a child? Yeah, because their laughter tickles me beyond belief.
Do I have to end this post? Yeah.