“No. You can’t. No one’s pooping until we finish cleaning up.”
* If you are sleep deprived and have recently spent a lot of time with children under the age of 10.
“Which one is your favorite Daddy?” Mia asked.
She showed me five animals that she had drawn from her new trace-your-hand-into-an-animal book. There was a cat, fish, dog, raccoon, and snail.
“I like the raccoon,” I said.
Megan laughed because of the way I had pronounced raccoon. I said it, “ruh-COON.”
“Is that really how you say RAH-coon?” my wife asked.
“No. I don’t why I said it like that. I’ve never said it like that before in my life. I have no idea where that came from. But her ruh-COON is definitely my favorite.”
“You’re a doh-doh.”
The next morning, I was pointing out (NOT complaining) that I also had a seat in the lack- of-sleep boat.
“You didn’t wake up with Delaney at 1:30,” Megan said.
“True, but I was definitely awake at 3 when you brought her into our bed.”
Megan’s entire being, without saying a word, said, “You poor thing.” Her eyebrows were the loudest. By far.
“Delaney kicks me,” I said. “She slaps me in the face. Last night I took a head-butt to the nose.”
Not a single cell belonging to my wife shifted position. Not one cell. If anything, the trillions became more rigid.
I continued. There was a lot at stake: an entire Sunday of unscheduled parenting time lay ahead of us. If I could get just one hair of her recently waxed eyebrows to loosen in sympathy…just one…it could make all the difference. Desperate, I stammered, “When you bring her into our bed she is like a wild ruh-COON!”
At least I made her laugh.
Blogger’s Note: If you did not find the above post funny, please spend at least 14 hours with children under the age of 10, sleep less than five hours, and read again. Repeat until this post is hilarious.
Declaration Number Two:
When: February 25, 2019, during dinner
Where: Our house
By whom: Mia, age 4
Most Significant (in this case, only) passage: “I am out of ketchup.”
Outcome: Mia received more ketchup
Yesterday my four year-old daughter Mia spilled her milk. Three times. Three. Times. In one day.
The first spill was a full cup backhanded by a mermaid tail that had no business whatsoever of being at the table during lunch. The second spill was an ill-advised play tea cup full of milk given to her at snack by her older sister, a co-conspirator with a long rap sheet, my seven year-old daughter, fellow milk spiller Mazey. And the third and final spill was an overly enthusiastic cheers at dinner with our one year-old Delaney, just getting started on her milk spilling career. Mia’s grip wasn’t where it needed to be. Delaney had more oomph than Mia was expecting. The accuracy and angle. I could write more. Complicated sentences with physics terms like “center of gravity.” But I won’t.
Instead, it’s time to examine with fresh eyes the wise, age-old saying, “There’s no use crying over spilt milk.” Which is true. Once it’s spilled, or spilt, it’s spilled. What good is crying going to do? Crying won’t clean it up or get it back in the cup. In fact, the tears will only add to the total surface area of wetness.
On the second spill, crying doesn’t help much either. For one thing, the tears are already pent up, so it’s going be more like bawling, which is not a good look for a forty year-old male that needs to show strength at all times to his three daughters. Sniffling, though, while you are squeezing out a dish towel already soggy and smelling faintly sour from the first spill, I found, did help a little. Just a little quiet shuddering sniffle that originated deep in my core. Nobody heard it. It helped. It did. There’s sense in that.
On the third spill, the saying is clearly inaccurate and misguided. Thanks to thirty whole seconds of research, I was able to glean that the saying is at least 350 years old when some guy in the 1650’s said “no weeping for shed milk.” It is possible that he is referring to milk that is stored in a shed, and that if you weep, you don’t get any. But it is more likely that this confirms my original thinking: that for much of human civilization a child would not receive three cups of milk in a day, so that spilting or shedding three times would not even be conceivable. Therefore, I would like to start a new phrase that could easily last a few hundred years, assuming milk in some form remains plentiful.
“On the thrice shedding of milk, weeping doth good.”
“Did you see my text?” Jimmy asked.
“The tweet about the Tarik Cohen play? Yes. Hilarious.”
“Can you believe they named a play Oompa Loompa? Can you imagine? All right guys, we’re gonna have a play were we pitch it to Tarik and then he’s going to throw it. We’ll call it Oompa Loompa.”
“Then in the huddle. Oompa Loompa on two. Break!”
“Very amusing. I wonder, though, isn’t it just a little offensive?”
“To whom? Short people? Green-haired white overall wearing chocolate factory workers?”
“I just thought it might seem a little derogatory,” I said.
“No, you’re right. It is offensive. If you’re a midget with green hair working in a chocolate factory. It’s deeply offensive.”
“Or what if you had like just a little Oompa Loompa DNA. I just got my 23andme results. It turns out I’m a sixth Oompa Loompa.”
“You could write the NFL a letter: ‘Dear Chicago Bears and NFL executives, please see the attached 23andme results. As you can see, I am a sixth Oompa Loompa. I find the Bears recently naming a trick play Oompa Loompa to be deeply offensive. I believe this kind of flippancy towards the Oompa Loompa people contributes to the negative image that the NFL is broadcasting to our society at large. Please take necessary measures to remediate.'”
“They would have to make a statement.”
“Oompa Loompa DNA. That’s good.”
Lately I’ve been editing an essay I wrote a couple of years ago about joining a fraternity and hazing. I cringed when I saw that it was over 24,000 words. So I’ve been hacking away at it with a machete trying to get it down to about 3,000.
HYPOTHETICAL EDITOR #1: What in tarnation is this idiot babbling about?
HYPOTHETICAL EDITOR #2: Why do we keep accepting these essays all tattered up by dull blades?
I took a breather from the editing jungle and glanced at a civil war book when I discovered that before the Gettysburg Address a man named Edward Everett spoke for over two hours. He was a prominent orator, politician, and former president of Harvard that was actually the person selected to make the main “address.” Lincoln was invited at the last minute and the organizers were surprised that he not only accepted, but “wished to say a few words.”
“Dedicatory Remarks by the President of the United States” was near the bottom of the program.
CITIZEN VISITING LINCOLN: “Abe, you gonna’ talk at that there ceremony?”
LINCOLN: “I don’t know. I want to.”
CITIZEN: “You the President, I reckon you probably should say sumpin.”
Everett’s first line was 52 words. His total speech, which he memorized, was over 13,000. He was an expert on antiquity and spoke at length about ancient funeral rites in Athens. Lincoln’s speech was 270 words. Two minutes vs. two hours.
There’s an important point to be made here, about something or other. But since this is a blog, I’m just going close with the fact that Everett had a kidney ailment that required a nearby tent with a pot for him to pee in. Two hours is a long time to hold a pee.
Now it’s time to drink more coffee and get back to editing my essay. I wonder if I can get one of those pots? It could save me a lot of time as I cut words like “superfluous.”
HYPOTHETICAL EDITOR #3: Is this another essay from that pot-pissing windbag?
Me: Seems like “No” is your new favorite word. Why don’t we try “Yes” once in a while.
Me: Ah, there it is. Your favorite word. What if we changed your favorite word to something else? Like snuggle? Or donut? Or unicorn?