Here's a weird admission: I just turned fifty-six, which is not the admission, but I never knew before this week how to short-sheet a bed.
I have threatened, over the years, to do just that. I never have. I have had decades to attempt this well-known prank, but I have never been fully aware of just what would go into such an endeavor. I have understood the concept, but not the actual nuts and bolts involved. I have used the words, "short-sheet your bed" as a punchline without ever being able to say that I have participated in this practical joke. I turned, as I have so many times when I have been lost for how to begin a process, to YouTube. What I found there was, in its mildest form, a revelation. I was pleased to find that all my instincts and imaginings were confirmed. As I watched, I became aware of the details of the task. I was grateful for the tips regarding the intricacies of the undertaking: keeping the pattern of the sheet up to make it appear as a fitted sheet, tucking it in only halfway down. Many of these points I might have anticipated myself if I were to go off blindly to make this work for me.
A life spent without ever having the opportunity to short-sheet a bed feels like a life well-lived, in hindsight, but it did make me wonder how I had missed the chance to visit this annoying trick on anyone. I have two brothers. I went to band camp. Maybe I just didn't have enough chances at summer camp. Like none. My summer camp was living at my family's cabin in the mountains. There I slept in a sleeping bag. So did my brothers. I suppose I could have stitched one of those sleeping bags shut halfway down, but that borders on vandalism, which I tend to avoid.
So here I am, in the late-mid chunk of my life, wondering if I will have the chance. When I stayed at my mother's house, it occurred to me ever so briefly that I could try out my new skill on her bed, but something tells me that short-sheeting my eighty-three year old mother's bed would bring me very little satisfaction or appreciation from anyone I told about it. She's a good sport, one of the best, in fact. But I may have missed the window for this particular activity.
Probably. Which means that you might want to keep this in mind if you're planning to have me over as a house guest anytime soon.