Fathead’s Lice Removal System

Hello all! I hope your President’s Day weekend went well. We had some good times over here which is fairly remarkable considering that Friday we figured out that the neighborhood tree rats had invaded our heating ducts. Riley figured it out first because they were apparently nibbling on the vent in her room while she was trying to sleep so she was fairly freaked out about the whole thing.

I however handled it pretty darn well. I just barricaded the vents, turned off the heat and handed out parkas. It’s brisk in here. It feels like the home of a post menopausal woman, but at least we don’t live in North Dakota.

Riley is demonstrating a hypothermic coma in front of her blocked vent. I don't know where she gets her overdramatic nature.

Riley is demonstrating a hypothermic coma in front of her blocked vent. I don’t know where she gets her over-dramatic nature.

Take a moment to admire my pioneer spirit.

Thanks. Because last night at bedtime, after a full afternoon of Frisbee golf and beer, I received the news that we had been exposed to lice and the pioneer spirit left me. Nothing brings out my inner OCD like small insects in my home. Seriously, my kids apply for the Witness Protection Program every time we have an ant invasion.

However, Hubs and I came up with two separate systems for lice removal and I thought I’d take a moment to document them, so that if you have children or a fondness for Third World Country brothels (ahem, Senator Menendez), you would know what to do.

Fathead’s Lice Removal System

  • Freak the f*ck out! (This first step is important. Skipping this step will unravel the whole system.) Think about all of the things your vermin carrying children have touched. Become overwhelmed. Contemplate your life before children. Remember how happy and pest free you were. Obsessively scratch your head and cry a little.
  • Stick everyone in the shower. Stick your neighbors in the shower. Wash everyone with lice shampoo. Hand out tiny torturous combs to comb out the nits. Obsess over each piece of dandruff that the tiny comb rips from your children’s heads. Comb their hair every day for a week or until they are hairless.
  • Channel Tom Sizemore in Black Hawk Down and deliver inspirational battle speeches to your shell-shocked children while their scalps bleed. They will be especially puzzled when you tell them “everyone’s been shot!” but you will understand the reference and that’s what is important. Throw the towels down the back steps.
"In Mogadishu the lice carry RPGs and work for war lords."

“In Mogadishu the lice carry RPGs and work for war lords. Hair is for the weak!”

  • Strip the beds. Throw all bedding, stuffed animals, kids’ clothes and anything else that isn’t nailed down out the back door with the towels to be washed in hot water. Cover your naked, shivering children with a tarp.
  • Vacuum all of the carpet and upholstery in your home and car. Empty the contents of the vacuum in the outside trash bin. Dismantle your vacuum to wash all of the parts. When you’ve forgotten how to put your vacuum back together, throw it down the back steps. Tear out the carpet. Throw it down the back steps with the vacuum.
  • Change clothes after each task. Throw the clothes you were wearing down the back steps. When you’ve gone through all of your machine washable clothes, borrow your husband’s clothes. Throw those down the back steps. Finish your tasks naked.
  • Throw everything that can’t go in the washer in plastic garbage bags and seal. Leave in the airtight bags for a couple of weeks or until you and your children have forgotten what are in the bags. Throw the bags away.
  • Lose your keys. Have a tantrum about losing your keys. Tear your house apart. Realize that your keys are in the bottom of one of the airtight garbage bags. Abandon driving.
  • Eat a bucket of Red Vines.
  • Repeat this process in ten days.

Hubs’ Lice Removal System

  • Go to bed.
  • Avoid your wife for two to three days.

Note: this post was written in a sanitized area while wearing a winter jacket. I hope it has been helpful.




Photo Credits


29 thoughts on “Fathead’s Lice Removal System

  1. Judy Smith says:

    Hilarious and disturbing. Thank you, God, for not making me one of Mama Fathead’s chilluns. I sincerely hope order and sanity have returned to you household …

  2. Carrie Rubin says:

    We have been very lucky to have avoided any lice scares over the years. I think the short hair of my boys helps. Their hair is longer now that they’re older, but luckily, there aren’t many lice outbreaks in middle school and high school. But I did used to live in North Dakota. Really, I did. And yes, no heat there would really, really suck right about now…

  3. Jill Hoven says:

    Oh oh oh!! I’m so sorry! I feel your pain, sistah!! At the 10yo’s Valentine’s Day party at school last week, a mom informed me that there was lice in the classroom – just as I watched my (very long-haired) daughter call a GROUP HUG with all her classmates. The eye-twitch began right then and there… and sure enough, I found a bug that night (after the overly-friendly 10yo informed me her head itched). I had a total melt down, used bad language (the 10yo had the audacity to actually say “I was right! I predicted you’d say that word if you found anything…”), cried, and wondered how I could lay my hands on a flamethrower… Here’s hoping your back steps are finally clear enough for you to walk out of the house and head to the closest bar!!

    • Ha! I was thinking of you as I wrote this because I know that you’ve had your share of those pesky critters. And I actually asked myself, “what did Jill do?” as I was throwing things down the back steps, some of which are still piled out there and will now have to be thrown away because they’ve been rained on and are now harboring lice and mold. *sigh” Being a mom is hard.

  4. ok, this is feckin’ hilarious. and your hub’s system is just beyond in the funny dept. i always wondered why in the feck kids get these things, but it’s sort of like dandruff for kids and highly curable, albeit gross. and you know what’s way worse, BED BUGS. i had a friend who had them and as she was telling me she was sitting in my apt. i was so creeped out that i would spontaneously slap the sofa where she was sitting because i swore i had seen something. i’m not kidding… anyhoo, delightful read… xo, sm

  5. Ohhhh Kelly! Thanks for taking me down memory laneame a much needed visit with your Beautiful Long “New Permed Hair” hat nighAnd then much to our surprise little Tiffany came home from school with head lice! So…the fun began…and I felt so bad that we had to delice your new doe with the the tiny comb and chemicals! And if memory serves me we went out that night and got shit faced! LOL.! I guess you could say I was just prepareing you for this kind of fun when you have your own kids! I think I still owe you a new perm! Ha Ha Ha! Love you! and miss you!
    Bon Mom

    • Good times! I remember it well and even though my perm was never the same and it also removed the color from my hair I still freaked out less then than I did this time. I must be crazier now. I blame it on the hormones. Love you!

  6. Jessica Rick says:

    Going forward, I’m going to start using the phrase, “Everyone’s been shot!” for moments when I need encouragement. The red vines are comforting; my comfort of late has been a combination of chocolate cake delicacies from Portos and grapefruit juice which I swear is helping me get over my cold.

    • I love grapefruit juice! I can’t drink it anymore with my acid reflux but it is sooooo good and I too believe that it can cure anything (except possibly lice). I love Tom Sizemore in that movie and that is something that Rusty would also totally say. In fact, he has actually said to Riley “It’s only a flesh wound” when he muscled one of her reluctant baby teeth from her head amidst a generous blood bath.

  7. Wait. Did your kids actually CONTRACT lice or were you just in the pre-planning phase? That is one of my deepest, darkest nightmares. Like super-deep below the surface scary shit.

    • I don’t even know if she ever actually had it even though I’ve dissected every freckle, piece of dandruff and lint that had the misfortune of landing on her head. If I actually saw a critter I would probably go completely “Heart of Darkness”. But we did go through my treatment plan.

  8. WSW says:

    We had four go-rounds with lice as a result of the COMMUNAL HAT BIN that was used for a school play. How brain damaged do you have to be to store hats all together in a school?? As a result we now own three dozen high end lice combs, ten gallons of Pantene conditioner mixed with baking soda (it loosens the nits) and a hazmat suit. Let me tell you there was not enough vodka in the state of New York during that time, which is now referred to as The Seige in my house.

  9. […] thanks to my blogging buddy over at Fathead Follies for the inspiration for this little foray into fiction. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out her site. […]

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