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The Pinnacle of Fatherhood


Triple D

Triple D

This past weekend I had the honor of escorting our beautiful daughter to the annual Stepfordville Daddy-Daughter Dance, or Triple D as I like to call it. This is a first for both of us. And with she in her old flower girl dress and Me in my only suit, we head out for a night out under the Stepfordville lights. Just a Dad and his Daughter…

In Stepfordville, few things are bigger than the Daddy Daughter Dance. (The only thing bigger is the

chow time

chow time

annual luxury import vehicle giveaway…that’s the only way I can explain how everyone here drives one…maybe this is my year to win…) And due to the unrealistically large number of children in Stepfordville, the Triple D cannot simply exist as a single event held in an evening.  In fact, there are so many little girls in Stepfordville that the Triple D must be divvied up like chow time in prison.  Each age group (or cell block) gets a 1.5hr time slot for which to hold their dance.

We decide to surprise M and get her a pretty corsage to wear to the dance.  This, of course, is met with indifference, if not disgust. (Perhaps we should not have opted for the corsage tattoo)  After a quick guilt trip, she relents, and agrees to wear the flower…but ONLY until we get into the dance…So, donned with our pretty flower and a scowl, we are off to the Triple D! (After 400 photos…thank you, Mommy)

Corsage

M’s Corsage Tat

If I can describe the dance in one word, it would be, “Crowd”…or “Lines”…It starts before we even leave our vehicle with waiting in line to pay for parking.  Once we have parked and make our way into the Stepfordville Conference Center and we find ourselves in line yet again.  This time the line is to take photos, which, like the parking, cost money.  Oh well, you gotta pay to play, right?

20 or so minutes into our allotted chow time…err, dance time, we finally make our way into the main hall. As you might suspect, we find ourselves in line for a third…and final time.  This line is for refreshments. (Wow, we actually do get some chow! … the prison similarities are starting to pile up…Is that guy wearing an orange jumpsuit??)  We load up our paper plates with tiny finger sandwiches, semi-fresh fruit, and stale cookies.  This feast is not to be outdone by the airplane-sized servings of soda poured straight from the 2-liter bottle!  Oh well, we ain’t here for the grub.  Let’s dance!

Let's Dance!

Let’s Dance!

We hit the floor with some fellow daddy-daughter cohorts and the dancing commences.  As we approach the dance floor, a sea of suited-up middle-aged dads parts to allow us entry.  These dads are busting some moves!  I see the sprinkler, the running man, the cabbage patch, and even the robot.  If not for the little girls, I would swear I am at an insurance seminar mixer!  As they say, “When in Rome…” so I start working my magic on the floor with M.  Soon, she is dancing in a group of her schoolmates and I find myself moonwalking alone.  Now I know how Farmer Ted felt when Sammy left him on the dance floor in Sixteen Candles…awkward.

Farmer Ted

Who wouldn't dance with these dads?

Who wouldn’t dance with these dads

The rest of the dance continues in this manner except that the other “single” dads and myself make our way to the sidelines to watch our little girls having a blast…without us.  It is at this point that I am thankful that the Triple D is so short.  There is only so much small talk and little girl screams this man can take. (The loudest of the screams came when What Does the Fox Say comes on…I am still deaf in my left ear)

Before we know it, the time limit is up on our fairy tale evening and the DJ is ushering us out the door in order to prepare the mess hall for the next cell block.  We take our girlies out for dinner and rather than cut our losses and call it an evening, we decide it will be a good idea to take them to Main Event (a mega-super-center containing bowling, laser tag, video games…and beer).

Main Event is anything but an event.  As soon as the game cards are loaded up with dad’s cash, our girls are gone… So we do what any other man would do in this situation, we get beers and follow them around while they play games.  If they were older, this would be equivalent to holding purses and coats while they shop.  At least the beer is cold.

It takes roughly 1 1/2 hours for us to collect the girls and exit the mega-supercenter-gameapalooza-bar.  The girls guzzle down the candy that they purchased with their winning game tickets on the way home while the dads ride in a silent, slightly beer-tinted reflection.

As I tuck my sweet baby girl in and looks up at me with those heart-melting baby blues and she whispers, “Best night ever” and then flashes an ear-to-ear grin (at which point she looks like a jack-o-lantern due to all of the missing teeth she has…or doesn’t have).  It is at this point that I come to a harsh realization.

I have reached the pinnacle of fatherhood.  Soon, this little angel will hate me.  She will not snuggle with me while we watch cartoons.  She will not throw her arms around me and ask me to pick her up.  She will probably not even talk to me…She will grow up.

I only wish “chow time” lasted longer…

sad

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MPD- Multiple Personality Dad


mpd

 

A couple of months ago I am putting Lil b to bed and I start doing a random character.  For no real reason, the character that I jump into on this particular night is an old Jewish grandmother, or bubbe.  To become a bubbe, I hobble around his room like any elderly woman might while I talk about my day.  In my best Jewish old lady accent of course.  This is supposed to be a spur of the moment, one-off type  thing to ease him into bed one night and never mentioned again.

For whatever reason, the character resonates with Lil b and he starts to ask for “Boobie” the next night and the following night, and so on.  Now it’s to the point where I have to practically become this old broad every night when I put him to bed!  Don’t get me wrong, Boobie is great.  She tells stories about growing up in New York.  She tells Lil b all about her day at the beauty parlor, or the butcher shop and the choice cuts of meat…and how big they used to be compared to what you get now…and how everything is so expensive.  The best thing about Boobie is that she gives super wet, sloppy kisses, which I think is what stuck with Lil b in the first place.  (you perverts get those dirty thoughts of Boobie outta your head right this minute!…sick bastards)

 

Bubbie

This is all fine and good and only happens for a few minutes each night…no harm, right?  My ass…Since Boobie is now an official family member, I am strapped with the task of coming up with new material for her every friggin’ night.  I feel like one of those shitty standup comedians that travels the country telling the same jokes every night and then binge drinking himself to sleep in his budget motel room.  (the only embellishment there is the comedian part) Needless to say, playing Boobie gets old.  Especially on those nights where I have had a bad day and all I want to do is drink myself in to an autoerotic dream world.  You try getting off when you’ve been portraying a crotchety old Jewish lady…(Now I know what Howard Stern feels like…)

Howard

Needing a break from Boobie, I have had to come up with an acceptable substitute.  I sometimes become Slim Jim, the crazy cowboy that yells his own name every 30 seconds. I have a French chef character when it comes time to feed the kids.  They call him Chef Daddy and he snobbishly serves them processed foods for breakfast on the weekends.  There is “Ze German”.  He comes out rarely as he and Boobie don’t seem to get along all that well for some reason.  And finally, there is Frank The Tank, my personal favorite.

FTT is a fairly new character.  He talks in a Gomer Pyle voice, but acts like the Will Farrell character from Old School just after he does the beer bong.  Only, I take it a few steps further and I actually pin Lil b down on his bed and punch the life out of him.  (Ease up CPS dorks, I don’t hit him in the face where you could see the bruises…body blow!, body blow!)  The first time I did FTT, Lil b loved him.  I don’t know what happened, but the next time I broke into character Lil b was having none of ole Frank and he went into instant fit mode.  Me being me, or Frank being Frank, this only eggs me on to take it up a notch… to the point that Lil b is huddled in the corner of his room sucking his thumb and quietly rocking himself into a happy place.

FTT

It is about this time that Mommy rescues him and bans FTT from upstairs in an effort to keep Lil b from developing a few personalities of his own.  That being said, FTT still comes in very handy when I need to get Lil b to quiet down or get back into bed…All I have to do is fire up the ole tank and start the fist guns in motion and he squeals with delight…or terror…yes, it’s definitely terror as he sprints back to his room yelling that he hates Frank…silly kid…I am probably causing some kind of psychological damage…Guess I had better get my cane out and put on my grandma dress…my baby boy needs his “Boobie”.

Emergency Football Drill


I don’t know about all you other football fans out there but, at my house, Daddy doesn’t miss his games. Of course, for day games this is fairly easy to manage because the kids can be sent out to detail Daddy’s truck, or simply locked in a closet while Daddy straps on his football rig and lets the sporty nectar send him into a pigskin-induced coma.  However, evening games have proven more difficult for Daddy to get some “Me time” (not the me time you fellow porn addicts are thinking, but I like where your heads are)

Needless to say, after seasons of experimenting I have come up with something that gets those frisky kids to bed by kickoff so that Daddy can get his fix.  I call it Emergency Football Drill.  The EFD is a complex combination of skilled parenting moves that has taken a couple of years to perfect.  In a show of good will towards my fellow football folks out there, I am going to share with you my secret formula.

The Emergency Football Drill

Step 1)  FEED THE LIVESTOCK:  Getting the kids fed, and fed quickly is essential and this single event can make or break whether you are seeing kickoff or reading Goodnight Moon .  The recommended dinner for the kids on game night is fast food (easy to grab on your way in from work and no prep required) Of course, this is not the most healthy option for your livestock, so any foods that can be prepared quickly will also work (grilled cheese, mac-n-cheese,etc).  The point is to get them fed quickly.  This is also where you start to set the tone for the next step.

Step 2) LIE TO THEM:  Let’s face it, small children literally have no sense of time.  It is easy to hurry them along by telling them that it is late and that they need to get a move on.  This starts with Step 1 and continues through Step 5.  Always keep them rushing.  If you let them get sidetracked with cartoons or toys for even a few minutes, then you are putting yourself at risk of missing that first snap!

Step 3) CLEANLINESS IS NEXT TO…:  Bath time with toddlers can be the ultimate time waste if you are not diligent.  When possible, put them in the shower.  We have trained our toddlers to shower (with our aid) and this saves many precious game night minutes.  Showers are genius in that they do not offer the opportunity for kids to play.  There are no bubbles and no toys…and no time is wasted…efficiency by definition…If you are really pressed for time, take a hose to them out in the yard…you can almost hear that national anthem now, my friend.

Step 4) STORY TIME:  Ahh story time…yet another sand trap that is easily played into by unsuspecting parents.  Do not let the squid pick the bedtime story(s).  You know the short ones, don’t act like you don’t…this is the time to use those short books to your advantage.  Close all curtains so that the kids time awareness remains “in the dark”.  This step should not be completely rushed through as this is some good quality time with your little ones.  Read the short stories, snuggle and tickle…but be mindful of the time…can you feel it?  You are sniffing the goal line of kid-free game watching buddy…soak it in…

Step 5) DISCIPLINE:  Game time is minutes away and your kids are calling your bluff.  They are in and out of bed, crying for water, wanting extra hugs…you name it, they are gonna throw it at you.  You have to maintain discipline.  Be stern, be strict…hell, if it’s your favorite team, be mean, but you must get them in to stay in those beds…It’s okay to mildly beat them in this circumstance…

 Good work!  In addition to your Father Of The Year nomination, you have just secured yourself an evening of uninterrupted football watching.  Give yourself a pat on the back, open that tall boy and kick those feet up on the coffee table.  You have earned it my friend…What?  What’s that?  Fold laundry?  Go to the grocery store?  OMG…we forgot to check the wife…This is where a step 6 would come in handy…I’ll be hiding in the garage…good luck boys!

The First Day…What a Ruse


I pitty da fool don’t eat his lunch!

 

Mom walked us into school…once

Looking back, I have quite fond memories of the first day(s) of school.  What’s not to like from the kid’s perspective?  You get to rock new clothes, new backpacks loaded down with supplies (which sucked ass for kids that walked to/from school), and new super hero-themed lunch boxes.  Properly supplied, the Sis and I would climb into Mom’s Cutlass Supreme, she would crank up the Queen, and we would roll straight 80’s pimp-style to elementary school.  And yes, my mom rocked the perm…

Throughout junior high and high school the first days only seem to get better.  Super hero lunch boxes give way to designer shoes and jeans, and the selection of the perfect jacket/coat plays a more important role in ones wardrobe (so long velour-lined jean jacket, you will be missed…then burned).  As for the backpacks, they remain an unfortunate necessity.  The story remains the same in that we as kids provide our list of demands and hold our folks schedules (and wallets) hostage until all demands have been met… 

Throughout all of those years I never thought once about the stress or the cash outlay that was placed on my awesome parents, nor did they throw it in our faces like they could have…should have.  Hell, Sis and I were so spoiled that if we didn’t get to go out-of-town-school-shopping you would think the world was ending…such little assholes we were.(Don’t worry, we gave the folks a break eventually…I took to dealing drugs and robbing liquor stores and Sis took to whoring to pay our way through college…)

I WANT MY SNACK PACK!

Fast forward to the present, the first day of Kindergarten for my baby girl, M.  With a closet full of designer clothes (I looked for iron-on shirts, but apparently these are a thing of the past); a personalized/matching  backpack and lunch box set (super heroes are not cool enough for this diva) and new shoes (that blink and flicker enough to send an epileptic scrambling for a tongue depressor).  All topped off with her first missing tooth, lil miss thang is ready for school…Like her mom and dad, she is oblivious to what we have gone through over the past couple of weeks to ensure her first day happiness…In fact, she had the nerve to bitch because we didn’t send the proper snack in her lunch box! (I know someone who is about to be snacking on the back of my hand!)

Needless to say, my feelings of first day nostalgia are quickly being replaced with feelings of unappreciated tiredness…and it’s only Kindergarten…WTF are we gonna do when she’s a junior in high school? (hopefully my backhand still packs a wallop by then as I fear I am going to need it…)

 

 

 

 

Happy First Day to all of you unappreciated parents out there…Now go fix your kids lunch…and iron some effing clothes while your at it you worthless bastards…

It’s Holiday Season Again: Christmas…Execution Style


I am proud (or embarrassed) to present the final installment of the Holiday Season Series.  So sit back, drop your pants, tighten that belt around your neck one more notch and try not to lose conciousness before you “finish”.

Ah Christmas, the culmination of a long journey that is the holiday season.  Complete with enough glitz and glam to impress even little bearded baby Jesus, who just happens to share a fake birthday with our favorite day to celebrate capitalism.  It’s funny really when you take a step back and look at how we have bastardized what was once a holy day to many.  Frankincense and Myrrh have been replaced with PS3 & iPad.  Saint Nicholas is now a fat ass cookie-gobbling home invader, and the traditional nativity scene now comes with Yoda as the baby Jesus.  But hey, at least we are winning the war on terror… Suck on that Bin Ladin!  However, I admit that I, too am to blame for the capitalization of Christmas, but screw it, I like blinky lights and boxes wrapped with shiny paper just as much as the next guy, which brings us to Christmas and my family.

I have purposely waited 2 months to publish this entry because it has taken this long to recover. I still shutter at the mere thought of a Christmas tree.  Once upon a time Christmas could quite possibly have been my most favorite time of year.  My folks were blessed with the good fortune to be able to afford to buy my sister and me pretty much anything we asked for, and believe me, we asked for a lot.  I think at one time I had enough G.I. Joe paraphernalia to invade a small country and my sister had a enough Barbie dolls to recreate Hugh Hefner’s wildest Playboy Mansion shindig…that is until we turned all of those plastic bitches into Pope-shredding Sinead O’Connor doppelgangers! It’s safe to say that my sis and I loved us some Christmas.

Fast forward from prepubescent, kung fu grip-enthusiast to 37 years old, married with kids.  Now I am getting a glimpse behind the shimmering, happy happy-joy joy facade that is Christmas and I don’t like what I see.  I used to look under the ole Christmas tree and I was instantly transformed into a present-hoarding Gollum, or Smeagolif you prefer…my precious…Now when I look under that same tree I see boxes wrapped in my money and an ever-worsening toy infestation problem in our home.

Looks more like my sister than me

I don’t know how my folks did it.  It seems like my sis and I had a ton of toys and somehow my folks managed to keep the toys from taking over their home.  I can’t walk through my house now without stepping on a Zooble (WTF is a Zooble??), or having to clear the furniture of stuffed animals and books just to sit down.  In fact, we once had a guest room in our house that is now overrun with Elmo and his gang of Asian-made marauders.  And this Christmas is no exception.

Christmas Eve: My House

Since Francine, our Elf on The Shelf, came to live with us a couple of years ago, we have ceased to travel for Christmas.  The original thought of setting up the Santa crime scene was endearing…until we realized that “some assembly required” means that you will spend endless hours putting together toys that your kids will play with for about an hour on Christmas morning.  Those same toys are never to be seen again once they are shuttled off to the confines of Elmo’s World…er the playroom.  Still, with the dexterity of South American sweat shop workers we assemble toy after toy.  We are about half-way through a handle of Crown when I notice that the decals are going on a bit crooked, but screw it, we are on a mission and we will not be delayed by drunken decal-ing!  It is about midnight and I am putting the finishing touches on Lil B’s new basketball goal when in walks a groggy M.  We just freeze like a child caught with their hand in the cookie jar (who the hell has an actual cookie jar?).  The wife suddenly breaks herself from the Crown-induced haze and shields M’s eyes from the harsh reality as she whisks her back to her bed.

Thank You Roofies Jr.

Amazingly, M has no recollection of waking up that night and is fully surprised on Christmas morning…thank you Rohypnol!- (When simply being an irresponsible parent just isn’t enough)

Christmas morning goes as expected, or at least my hangover-hazed memory tells me that it did.  M walks into the room calm and collected.  She makes her way through the maze of toys that “Santa” painstakingly set up and she is silently taking inventory.  The first thing from her mouth is not, “YAY!” or screams of delight.  No, M remembers exactly everything that she asked for and she is mentally scratching each item from the list as she makes her way around the tree.  Upon completion of her rounds, she simply looks at us with a sad little face and says, ” I didn’t get the Zhu Zhu Palace”…(WTF is a Zhu Zhu??)

To add to our toy prison overcrowding problems, our kids just happen to have some of the best grandparents in the world.  With the undying love of grandparents comes…you guessed it, boxes and boxes of toys arriving almost daily throughout the month of December.  My neighbors must think that our house is acting as an overflow distribution center for FedEx.  It got so “bad” this year that if there was no box on our porch when we went to check the mail, that my greedy kids thought something was wrong.  The toy situation is so bad that we have to cull through the post unwrapping carnage and sneak as many of the toys away as we can to be hidden away and used for bribes during the coming year.  (I highly suggest this if you have the room to hide more toys)

Despite the fact that we are prime candidates to make an appearance on Hoarders, this Christmas goes off with little incident.  We are thankful and lucky to have such great grandparents and an Elf on the Shelf that knows how to regulate.  I am starting to feel the stress of the holidays melt away as we edge ever closer to spring.  In fact, I am already making a list of toys to get the kids next Christmas.  Actually, my list is not toys, but rather a list of those to be executed.  Three guesses as to what bearded, fat-bellied bastard is at the top of that list.

One Down...Now where is that damn Easter Bunny?

It’s Holiday Season Again: Thanksgiving


 

Okay,

so I promised to complete the holiday series and by GOD I am going to do it!  For those of you that have long since put the torturous memory of Thanksgiving out of its misery, I am happy to reopen that wound for you as I am doing so to myself by authoring this very entry.

As is often the case, we opt to travel for Thanksgiving this year.  Only this time we are not on a 3-hour tour, we jump in head first and sign up for the 6-hour variety of road trip.  Granted, if I roofie the wife and NyQuil the rug rats , I can make that trip in 5 hours flat.  This being said, I am fresh out of roofies and at last check we have two wide-awake ankle-biters in the back seat. Begrudgingly, we head off to the windy, treeless prairies of the Texas panhandle.

Based on previous road trips (see https://genericdad.com/2010/09/21/were-no-donner-party/) you all know my children do not do well in the car over long periods of time.  Now, in the past we would typically drive thru a fast food joint and scarf down a high calorie, deep-fried mystery meal while I would attempt to distractedly eat and drive.  This is coupled with the wife riding reverse cowboy (on her knees in the front seat facing the back seat trying to force the kids to eat food that they don’t want in the first place)…maybe “Reverse Cowboy” is not the term…In fact, I know it’s not…I have Cinemax ya know. Needless to say, this is not the safest way to transport our precious cargo, so in recent trips we have been stopping at an actual restaurant with actual waiters.  This, at the very least, allows the wife and I to enjoy decent food while our kids run around howling like banshees in whatever Small Town, TX eatery we bless with our noisy presence.

The meal goes without incident.  I tip the poor 78 year-old woman who had to endure the ear-piercing shrieks of  my kids and we are back on the road just as an icy rain starts to fall.  Because the kids are somewhat behaving and because they actually ate some lunch we are inclined to let them have some candy while they watch their annoying movies (thank GOD for headphones!).  I don’t know if is something that he ate at lunch, car sickness, or something else entirely, but Lil B lets out a painful sounding belch that would put Booger Presley to shame.  That air bubble must have been serving as some makeshift cork because as soon as the cork blew, so did Lil B.  The kids had each just plowed through a tasty sack of M&Ms, so naturally, what was currently being projectile-vomited all over the back of my seat had the look of a lovely chocolate fountain one might see at a decent reception.  The comparison to the reception stops there because this is about the time that the smell hits the front seat.  Of course, we are in the middle of nowhere by this time and it’s pouring rain.  Luckily we see a roadside stop that we can at least have some cover to get Lil B. out of his Baby Gap Chocolate Fondue gear.  Clean as I might, I am not able to rid the vehicle of the scent of chocolate mixed with stomach bile, but some creative directing of the air vents at least keeps the smell in back with the livestock…err kids.

By comparison, the rest of our journey goes swimmingly and we soon find ourselves in the dusty plains of the panhandle on the outskirts of Amarillo.  There is not much to do in Amarillo other than binge drink and get pregnant.  Since we are already saddled with two fun babies, we opt for binge drinking.  We relax and visit with family in the days leading up to the turkey day feast(s).

Our first feast requires a short jaunt to the metropolis of Dumas, a small agribusiness-centered community in which the wife’s family resides.  Dumas is filled with good people and…hispanics, but mostly good people and I do not mind our brief visits.  It is actually a nice departure from the busyness of Dallas.  Things are quiet and simple and there is not much to do and I kind of like it…if only I could get 4G to connect so that I could Facebook and watch internet porn…maybe I don’t like being out in the boonies after all…at least there’s binge drinking…

After a delicious Thanksgiving meal with the wife’s family we are forced to exit rather quickly as we are already running late for our 2nd feast at my folk’s house back in Amarillo.  We arrive at my parent’s place just as my family is sitting down to eat.  So as not to disappoint, I heap the fixin’s onto my plate as though I had not seen food in days.  You can’t show up to mom’s and not eat after she has spent an entire day preparing a meal…So, the wife and I take one for the team and eat our second complete Thanksgiving meal within a two-hour span.  I am a fat ass and this is not much of a feat for me to accomplish, but I give the wife credit as she made a great showing at both feasts.  I am not positive, but I could swear I hear the sounds of a desperate woman purging her system later that day…it reminds me of high school and for a short time I bask in the nostalgia of my hometown.

The voyage home is uneventful.  There is no projectile vomiting, no crying, and no rain.  As we listen to an audiobook my mind drifts in and out of the story.  My liver and colon wreaking havoc on me for a week’s worth of overeating…and drinking, I am left with a warm sensation knowing that we are blessed with such a great family…nope, that’s not it…I think I just sharted…where the hell is that roadside stop!

It’s Holiday Season Again: Halloween


Let’s face it.  Halloween is one of those holidays that people either love or hate.  There simply is no middle ground when it comes to All Hallows Eve.  As I grow older I find myself in the crossroads of hating and loving Halloween. 

 When I was a kid I loved all things Halloween.  The costumes, the trick-or-treating and especially all of the candy.  It was the one time of the year that my folks would let me run loose around the neighborhood soliciting sugar high-enducing treats.  My parents were so cool that they didn’t even go through my candy claiming to pull out the unsafe looking pieces while secretly culling out the good stuff for them selves.  Nope, I was free to tear into every razor blade-infused apple, every drug-laced, unwrapped candy, and even those nasty ass candy corns.  Although I have it on good authority that they would sneak into my stash once I finally crashed from my sugar high. 

As I grew a little older the trick-or-treating would give way to just running wild through the neighborhood wreaking havoc on people’s Halloween yard art and kicking in the faces of their lovingly carved jack-o-lanterns.  Rather than begging door to door for candy I would simply steal the candy of a younger ‘treater.  Yes, I know this is wrong, but kids did it to me and by God, I was going to have my revenge.  Plus, I couldn’t return home empty-handed and dressed like a zombie. 

As I entered the high school scene Halloween would shift gears significantly.  For me and my crew it was all about property damage.  We would steal pumpkins and drive around hurling our loot at unsuspecting brick mailboxes and parked cars.  Trick-or-treating would become underage drinking-themed house parties.  This trend would continue on into college with the property damage portion of the evening eventually fading away.  Call it maturation if you will, but I credit binge drinking and girls dressed in slutty costumes.  Who wants to toss pumpkins when you can stare at coeds while drinking your way to tossing your cookies just before you pass out on a stranger’s couch.  Man, I just realized how much I miss college.  These first 3 phases of Halloween are what I always loved about the holiday. 

In the years after college the fun would begin to fade.  Dressing up for costume parties would become a source of stress to have the most kick-ass costume.  Binge drinking would become a liability as we all had jobs and responsibilities.  I would also develop a hatred for overaged trick-or-treaters.  Why won’t those teenagers just move to the next phase?  Get to a party, get to stealing other kids candy, or get to smashing pumpkins.  Either way, just get off my porch you greedy little bastards!  Essentially, I begin to hate Halloween at this point in life.

Enter marriage and babies and the cycle begins again.  This time it’s my children entering phase one of Halloween.  It is such a great feeling to see the pure joy on their faces as they are handed a piece of candy from a complete stranger.  Their little eyes just light up at the sight of that dum-dum being dropped into their oversized plastic pumpkin buckets.  Watching them fight through the completely ridiculous costumes that we force upon them while trying to run to the next house brings forth a hearty giggle.  And perhaps the best part of the evening is when we have made our way home, candy buckets dumped onto the floor, and we drop the big one on them.  We tell them that they can have one candy before bed, and one candy only.  Their little, round faces become serious with the weight of the decision that is upon them.  Despite their selection we all win.  They get delicious and hopefully unlaced candy and we get to feel like good parents…for a night.  I think it’s safe to say that I have come full circle on Halloween.  Hell, I think I am gonna go smash my neighbor’s pumpkins and steal some poor kid’s candy just for the nostalgia.

 

My Little Zombies

 

It’s Holiday Season Again…Where’s My Shotgun? (Prologue)


     Ah yes, it’s that time of year yet again.  The leaves are turning, football is in full swing, and all of our coats have been unpacked and dewinterized.  For many folks, fall symbolizes the start to the best part of their year.  They look forward to turkey, taking time away from the stresses of work and exchanging in pleasant fellowship with loved ones. 

 I can just see them wrapping up in that new “Snugg Life” Snuggie that they got for Christmas with a nice hot mug of cocoa as they settle in to watch Miracle on 34th Street for the 97th time.  Doesn’t that sound lovely?  It’s like a Lifetime original movie and you are the star.  Too bad this pumpkin spice-scented dream simply does not exist in my world.   In my world that same scene would be more like me drunkenly stumbling my way through a maze of toddler toys as I half fall-half sit into a 1/2″ layer of kid snack crumbs on the sofa in an attempt to rub one out to Sue Heck’s Hello Kitty-concealed jugs before I pass out. (I know Sue is under age, but I love me some Hello Kitty!).  While that scene may not be entirely realistic, (you all know I am too cheap to buy my kids toys…or snacks) it sets the tone for the holiday season in my family.

As I sit in jail for domestic abuse, I have some time to reflect on what it is about the holiday season that sends me down the path to suicide each year.  It’s the three-pronged attack of holidays that starts, and keeps the beating ball rolling.  Think of it in military terms.  The first wave of attack is Halloween.  If you survive the attack, you find yourself staring Thanksgiving right in the face.  Many do not make it through this second wave, but those that are unlucky enough to survive are rewarded with the shock and awe of Christmas.  Just the string of those three words has me ordering up my autoerotic asphyxiation kit…hold the lemon.

This year, in an attempt to keep my sanity, I have decided to chronicle the holiday season with my family.  I  will provide a detailed account of each holiday wave of attack.  Hopefully, I keep the shotgun out of my mouth long enough to finish this endeavor.  Wish me luck and stay tuned…

Innocence and Brutal Honesty


Tonight the Wife and I were slapped square in the face with some harsh reality…from our four-year-old.  While battling through yet another meal of brow beating M to eat something, she decides to pull a Maverick/Goose fly by of the tower. 

For those of you that don’t know M that well, she is the most loving little girl I have ever known.  I know this sounds like proud-parent-syndrome, but I am not exaggerating.  If there’s a chance for her to hug or kiss on Mom, Dad, or Lil B she is going to take it and she will run it into the ground.  In fact, tonight she licked me on the cheek as if she were a friggin’ dog, er…cute little puppy.   However, the over-licking and kissing are for another day.

So M is sitting at the table when she decides that, rather than take a bite of dinner, she will deploy her patented delay tactics and tell Mommy that she wants to give her a hug (one of multiple hugs deployed during any given meal).  M drops her ordinance of hugs and then, instead of  her typical reroute back to base (her chair), she decides that this mission is going to require the use of nuclear force.

Upon completion of the hug mission, M steps back from Mommy and drops this 5 megaton whopper, ” Mommy, do you have a baby in your tummy?”  After what seemed like an eternity of silence and several awkward wordless exchanges between Mommy and Me, I burst into a hearty belly laugh.  Meanwhile, Mommy is sitting at the table with fail-smile trying to figure out how to tell M that there is no baby in her tummy without letting on that this comment cut Mommy to the bone. 

So Mommy tells M that there is, in fact no baby in her tummy as she fights back a wave of tears. I am over across the kitchen belly laughing when M says to me, “Daddy, do YOU have a baby in your tummy?”  The laughing abruptly ends and Mommy and I enter a few moments of quite self-reflection while M awaits a response.  “No, neither Daddy or Mommy have a baby in our tummy.”  One would think that this would end the line of questioning and everyone would proceed with dinner.  Not M.  She disputes what we have told her and goes further to insist that Mommy does have a baby in her tummy.  This goes over like a lead balloon.

After adamant refusal from Mommy, M finally relents and goes back to pretending to eat.  The rest of the meal is a blur of sorts because both Mommy and I are locked away in the depths of our own self consciousness trying to assess the damage from the massive bombs that had just been dropped by our sweet, innocent daughter.  Not to be insensitive, but I felt how the survivors of Hiroshima must have felt as they crawled out from the rubble to see that their entire existence had been wiped out.  Fine, I am a overexaggerator.  Regardless, the seemingly innocent questions from our daughter had obtrusively opened our eyes.  Yes, Mommy and Daddy are severely out of shape…

Our evening ends with gentle hugs and kisses as the kids are tucked away in their beds (while internally struggling with issuing M a severe beating…we’ll show her little ass who’s out of shape!).  Mommy straps on her trainers and knocks the dust off the ole treadmill while I retired to the pool with my awesome sixpack…of non-light beer.  I can only assume that the next line of pregnancy questioning will be directed only at me…Cheers

Nuggets of Truth


Hello blogosphere!

I am sorry that this has become such a habit to have to apologize at the beginning of every post for not posting more frequently. Alas, I am busy at work, busy with the kiddos, and truthfully, I am quite possibly the laziest person that you know.

Regardless, on to the long-overdue update. Let’s start with M since you all know her a little better than Lil B. M is approaching the start of her 2nd year of Pre-K at the little Christian school. She has progressed nicely as far as curriculum is concerned. She is also making interesting strides in her social development. At the end of last year she was anointed “Most Friendly” by her teachers. We were proud of her for not being the thumb-sucker that sits in the corner and shits herself while not having the communication skills to let anyone know about it. However, we have recently been made aware that our daughter is the cause of much drama at the little Christian school. Apparently all of her classmates want to play with M and she has not exactly rolled out the welcome waggon to some of them. While we understand that someone known as “most friendly” might draw a crowd in the realm of the 4-year-old, we are not prepared to have other parents complain that our little baby is excluding her peers. The important thing here is what we do with this information. There are several ways to look at this situation. We could be happy that our daughter is the object of every post-toddler’s desire regardless of who she has to step on to reach the pinnacle of Pre-K stardom. Or, we could scold and punish her for not being nice to others and try to strain some sort of life lesson out of the situation. In the back of my mind I feel as if I am creating some kind of pre-pubescent sorority super-bitch…and I kind of like it. I mean, why should my little girl have to be scolded because some half-wit’s parents can’t handle that they have a child that is an undesirable playmate. Problem solved! M, continue on with your natural selection-style of making friends. I feel like Will Farrell in Old School as he takes a tranquilizer to the jugular, “Is this bad?

On to the main man who is going to carry on the Henderson name, Lil B. The last update I did probably had Lil B shitting in diapers and crying like a little bitch about every little thing. Well, I am unhappy to report that nothing has changed! As Lil B nears his 2nd birthday we find him in the throes of learning the english language. While he has a full grasp on conversation (in his mind), he is in that stage in which only us parents understand what the hell he is actually saying. It usually involves crying about a lost member of his entourage. You read correctly, B has an entourage. He has “Baby”, “Rabbit”, Giraffe”, and “Puppy”. When I say entourage, I mean it in every sense of the word. Lil B is NEVER seen without at least one of his trusted comrades. Although, I did notice that none of B’s boys were around when he decided to carpet bomb the kitchen.

It is our own fault. See, Lil B had a gnarly diaper rash and we were trying to let that nasty thing air itself out. So one afternoon I get the kids home and decide that B’s bomber needs a little time outside of the diaper. I slap some shorts on him mainly because M is a little too fascinated with the difference in equipment between the two of them, if you know what I mean. The shorts are designed to avoid M screaming,  “PENIS! PENIS!”  while pointing and laughing at her nude little brother. That being said, B is going about his normal business of free-balling and following M around one afternoon and things are running quite swimmingly. They aren’t fighting, B isn’t tackling or pulling M’s hair and M isn’t using her height advantage to withhold coveted items from B. Basically, a nice little afternoon in my world.   Meanwhile, as I half nap/half ignore the kids. Mommy comes into the kitchen and screeches. I am shaken from my slumber and run into the kitchen thinking that B has fallen on his head (again) or that he has kicked M’s ass again when I almost step in a trail of turds. If I were tracking small game it would not have been difficult to track Lil B from the string of nuggets that he had laid down across the kitchen floor.  As I scrape up last night’s dinner reincarnate, I am reminded of one of the many reasons that we are now dog-free.  I also made the tactical error in thinking that this was a one-time event. Two kids almost potty trained, and I recently got my first bathtub bombing from Lil B.  To make matters worse, I was distracted by a heated game of Disc Driving on my iPhone while I let him play a bit in the tub.  I am startled from my game by the garbled sounds of Lil B saying, “Poo Poo”.  I give a half-ass glance in his direction and my mouth falls open.  Sitting proudly coated in Mr. Bubble is Lil B. holding up a piece of shit the size of a cucumber. He is grinning ear-to-ear with the pride that he has finally connected the term of Poo Poo to its reality.  I swipe the ex-dinner from his hand and pull my best fade-away into the toilet. Splash! Nothin’ but net, err…water.  I know that B will grow out of his bombing phase, so I am not too worried.  Plus, I get to work on my jump shot.

So, you all can see that I have two midgets in completely different stages of childhood. To add to this, I have both sexes to deal with and believe it or not, they are completely different in demeanor from birth. I am thankful for this challenge because I was beginning to get a little bored with being Superdad. Obviously, if you have read all of this you have lost time that you will never get back. Thank you for reading and watch out for those toddler land mines!