I Gotta Run

So, one of the things that you notice about being an involved father or a teacher (I’ve done both) is that you get sick more. This is because you are essentially living your life in a giant petri dish. You are part of a group of people who are happy to get messy and wipe that mess on each other. This is sort of a drag, but the little snots are worth it.

The latest example of this is the plague that has wreaked havoc on my kids’ preschool the last month or so. The school is called Creme de la Creme (I know, I know, we’ll talk about that name some other time, but the reality is my kids love it there, I personally chose it after visiting five other schools twice each, and I am grateful to the school for what it does for my babies…)

So over the last month, just about every kid and parent at the school has caught what has become lovingly referred to as the “Creme Crud.” It’s an upset stomach, the runs, some experience a bit of a barforama, everybody who gets it has to go to the bathroom about once an hour for a few days. Then you’re back to business as usual. It was so contagious that a large percentage of the school was out the first week, and they started quarantining classes of kids who hadn’t caught it yet.

This didn’t work — they all still got it, and all the parents I know at the school got it too. I went a month without getting it, and I was pretty proud of myself, thinking I must be super strong and resilient. Foolish pride will always be your undoing. I thought I was home free until I played a Doctor Noize show for the great kids at Creme de la Creme on Friday, and then yesterday…

If you’ll excuse me, I gotta run.

This One Doesn’t Go To Eleven

Let’s talk Big Numbers.

Here is a great thing Riley (2 1/2) did the other night at dinner. She was counting on her fingers. “One, two, three, four… ten!” As everyone knows, little kids counting on their fingers is very cute. I could watch her do that over and over again and not get bored. Okay, I have watched her do it over and over again without getting bored. But then she animatedly and excitedly added a new insight…

“One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, ten… Ten… And… There’s no eleven there, Daddy! Look Mommy! There’s no eleven there!

So, unlike in Spinal Tap (if you haven’t seen Spinal Tap, you owe it to yourself to rent it…), this one does not go to eleven.

That’s my girl.

Here’s a great Big Numbers thing Sidney did. It was about a year ago now, but I didn’t have a blog then, so I’ll tell you now. I was reminded of it the other night with Riley’s Big Numbers Epiphany.

Sidney was getting excited about her age, and the ages of girls she admired who were a few years older, and how every year we all get to have a birthday and get a year older. Usually we also get to have some sort of birthday party — except, of course, those years in which we as adults become foolish enough to lament our birthdays as one more step toward our inevitable doom rather than celebrate them as reminders of our birth. In that case, we stop having birthday parties and hope nobody notices it’s our birthday, which is, of course, just sad.

But hey, kids don’t have this sadness — they can’t wait for their birthdays because of the sweets and presents involved, and because they get to be the center of attention, and as adults we’d be wise to rekindle this insight every year and get with the program like we did when we were younger. Sure, on your birthday you’re a year older and a year closer to your death — but isn’t that stark insight all the more reason to at least get something out of it and let the people you know kiss your ass for a day and feed you junk food? I sure as hell think so.

Anyway, I’ve digressed but I’m back on topic: Sidney was interested in the concept of birthdays. So Mommy and Sidney were talking about how she was going to turn four years old soon. Sidney thought that sounded pretty big and mature and cool. Then Mommy told Sidney that Daddy was 36 years old. Sidney gasped — awestruck, dumbfounded, impressed, in disbelief. And then she exclaimed:

“That’s a lot of getting older!”


Your old friend,


My Dinner Date With George

Okay, okay, so it’s Tuesday, and I’m supposed to post a Scene From Fatherhood every Friday. Well, here’s what happened on Friday: I picked up my three babes at the airport after they’d been away since Monday. So all day Friday after I picked them up, I played with said babes. And I forgot to write a Scene From Fatherhood because I was too busy living one. Sorry about that.

I can’t really remember the details of what we did on Friday, except that we had fun and my two girls and I had a bath in the big master bath before they went to bed. After the bath, we took a shower. You know, just because. My girls are suddenly very interested in taking a shower — they think it’s cool to walk through the water as it comes down from the spout. And guess what? It is cool. In fact, it’s especially cool to be with people who are young enough to think it’s fascinating to take a shower. Because they’ve only had a shower a few times in their life. The first few times they showered, they were a little fearful of it, and wanted to be held. But now, they want to walk in and out of the water and, of course, paint the water condensation on the glass door with their toothbrushes. Don’t you do that in the shower? If not, you should — I have learned it is a quite enjoyable, albeit temporary, artistic endeavor.

So my week without my girls was fairly lonely, as I predicted, but also as predicted, both Jack Bauer and I made it through. Jack killed more guys than I did, though. In fact, truth be told, I didn’t kill anybody. And nobody tried to kill me. I can’t say the same for Jack — the poor dude is always on somebody’s hit list. But I did a pretty good job of almost getting myself to bed on time, and I obsessively worked. I worked, exercised, played a few sports, and spent about ten minutes total every night eating dinner standing up at the kitchen counter in front of the soccer channel. Actually, not every night…

On Wednesday night, as promised to our wives, my friend George and I went to have dinner at Hooters. George has two daughters the same age as ours, and his wife and kids are visiting relatives in Korea for four weeks. Four weeks! And I was all pouty about being away from my family for five days. Pathetic. Anyway, we went to Hooters for dinner on Wednesday. I know you’re impressed, ladies. In any event, ladies, you will be even less impressed with my character when I tell you that, truth be told, George and I were not that impressed with the entertainment value — I mean waiting staff — at Hooters. I feel badly saying this, because they were all very nice young ladies, but — how should I put this? — they did not look like the buxom blonde bombshells in the Hooters ads and brochures.

Now, I had not been to a Hooters in about a decade — having once been to one in Florida in the nineties — and I suppose my expectations of a Baywatch-era Pamela Anderson approaching us as our waitress and suggestively asking what we’d like this evening was a bit too much to ask. In fact, next time, perhaps George and I should just order a pizza and rent a few episodes of Baywatch. It’s just a thought. George astutely speculated that perhaps Wednesday nights was the “B Team.” (Ladies, I can give you George’s email address for your direct responses to this truly horrifying albeit hilarious comment. Did I say hilarious? Of course, I didn’t think it was hilarious. I was laughing at, um, something else.) I can’t say for sure whether his observation holds any water. I suppose that, in the name of research and thoroughness, we’ll have to go back sometime on a Saturday to know for sure. I’ll keep you posted.

This entry has officially lowered the bar on “Scenes From Fatherhood.” And sometimes, that’s just the way life is.

I’ll talk to you soon.