Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Too Cool for School

This is Tommy, age four. With a father that can bench-press his own son's weight, it's no surprise that his coolness curve spiked prematurely; I just thought we had a few more years.

The boys went back to school after two weeks off and at some point during the vacation, Tommy discovered style. His apparently consists of a sun hat, sunglasses, and a leather coat. He'll probably ditch his winter jacket when he discovers that sweat is not cool. I hope.

Angie also had two weeks off and being away for so long built-up a lot of teaching to do. When she came home from work, it was clear she hadn't gotten it out of her system.

'Boys, come here! I want to show you an experiment.'

Angie then tied two balloons to a ruler with ribbon and stood back to admire her amazing contraption.

As David skeptically studied Mama's curious sculpture, Angie loudly tried to teach Tommy that whacking balloons with his super-secret ninja laser sword is not cool. Patience, grasshopper.

'Okay, so, the two balloons are the same size and balance. If I pop the red one, will the blue one go up or down?'

David was the first to respond. 

'Nooo!!! Not the red one! Pop the blue one!'

Tommy was the next to break the non-existent silence.

'Pop 'em both, Mama!'

Peter yawned and tried his damndest to look cool.

'The blue one will go down.'

My brain then convinced me that it was my turn.

'Nothing will happen.'

Angie cast me a satisfyingly annoyed look before popping the red balloon. After several seconds, David was again the first one to break the awkward silence.

'Hey, Papa...You were right.'

That's right - I am the modern day Nostradamus. When Angie cooks, I can normally predict the outcome, so I don't see why anyone was really that surprised. As it turns out, Angie wasn't surprised; she was mad. Big surprise. 

'Damn it!'

'Ah, that's sweet. Is that what you teach your students?'

When Angie's temper boils, she tends to ignore wisecracks from seductive man-nuggets, so I predicted that she would just continue babbling.

'I don't get it! This worked at school!'

'Hmm. Just curious, but at school, did you use an oversized ruler and wrapping paper ribbon?'


I chose life over responding and started rounding up the boys for bed. I launched this fun exercise with a typical routine, which is to sing my patented version of 'Row, Row, Row Your Boat'.

Brush, brush, brush your teeth,
Gently on the gums.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily,
Brushing your teeth is fun.

Yeah, bullshit. I might have been able to make brushing your teeth fun when the boys were still teething, but pretty much since then, the nightly routine could be more aptly described as 'herding cats' Tommy ran off one way, giggling something about giving Lukie a 'power hug'. David took off down the hallway dancing and Peter put on his headphones and ignored my screaming for 'everyone to stop what they are doing and pay wrath to me now!'

Angie ran up to me immediately, of course, and asked me what favor she could possibly do to please me. I dismissed her with a wave of my bicep and honed in on Tommy instead. He was 'hiding' under the sofa. I write 'hiding' because in my book, twitching like a flipped beetle and giggling like a hyena does not constitute hiding. Hmmm, where could Tommy be?

I took Tommy to the bathroom, ankles first. When I finally got him to stop squirming, I had to distract him.

'Hey, Tommy, do you know what color Peter's eyes are?'

'Yeah, blue-green-gray.'

'Right, kinda. What about David's?


'Great, two-for-Tuesday. What about your eyes?'


'Nope. Guess again.'


Rather than getting into a screaming match with my third born, I not so kindly suggested to the color-blind kid that he find a mirror and confirm that his dad is not a liar.

My reputation was restored with a single syllable.

Ladder Talk:
1) What was the best part of your day?
Peter: That I could play with Arman in school.
David: School was very good.
Tom: That we could have treats.

2) What was the worst part of your day?
Peter: That Arman could not come over to play after school.
David: Peter scaring me every time.
Tom: That I can not spend the night by me friend.

3) What would you like to do tomorrow?
Peter: I want that Arman comes over.
David: I want to play a little bit on the computer.
Tom: Play computer, watch TV and I wanna play the Cat in the Hat.

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