Hey, Dat!

Monet has this “tell” that I always seem to forget…
Monet: Hey, Dat, how was work today?
Me: Good! (short story about computers)
Monet: Hey, Dat, how was school today?
Me: Great! (short story ensues)
Monet: Hey, Dat, what did you learn today?
Me: Fun things like math and science!
Monet: Hey, Dat, I pooped.

Every. Single. Time.

Tent Camping with a 5 year-old

It’s 02:00, I’m wide awake and trapped in a tent with my 5-year old (whom is blissfully sound asleep -bless his lucky heart) at a park in Long Beach just feet from the noisy 605 freeway …with no less than 500 other kids and parents locked into this same “overnight extravaganza” experience.

Three problems I failed to account for: 1) I forgot headphones so I could watch Netflix without waking the child up. 2) my reading glasses are a mile away in the car….I’m literally typing this one letter at a time at my arm’s fullest distance.

Nevermind, 2 problems. I just peed into a water bottle. But I kinda wish I had my glasses for that one.

Earthquake!

Yesterday – around 10:30 in the morning – our bird started freaking out in her cage and then the ground started shifting. This morning, a few minutes after 04:00, it sounded like the bird fell off of her perch and flapped around in the cage until I came to get her. She was really spooked. Come to find out: there was an aftershock at that time. I didn’t feel it but she sure as hell did. I’ve got a fluffy little seismometer that poops on my shoulders. Win-win.

A-OK!

Someone please start a new fast food restaurant that copies Chick-Fil-A’s entire menu. Do everything they do except meddle in the lives and rights of consenting adults. I’ll be happy to feed my family from there at least 3 or 4 times a month. Oh, and call the new restaurant, “Chick-We’re-Gay-And-It’s-A-OK!”

Thanks. Good chat.

5 Year-old with a Knife

I was handed a Swiss Army knife for my 5th birthday by my mom’s stepdad. As soon as I opened it I heard her sigh, “No!”

The thought of handing my 5-year old a pocket knife strikes me as absurd as handing one to either my 11 or 13-year old. But that’s because they’ve never handled a knife, never cut themselves, never used it incorrectly so that they could learn otherwise from experience. In turn, they’ve never sharpened a stick to use as a spear, never split twigs to use as tools, never fashioned a fish hook.

I’ve ensured their safety by denying them the opportunity of learning basic survival skills. What a terrible exchange rate.

I Can Read Sheet Music

I taught myself to read sheet music this afternoon, specifically for the violin. The music teacher has an axe to grind about #2’s skill and practice. I never learned to play an instrument or read music. So I can’t correct it if I have no idea how to instruct it. As of today I have a rudimentary understanding of string music and it’s so COOL!! Why didn’t I do this before?!?

Meanwhile, the boy… Apparently 1.5 years of violin lessons in one district amounts to little more than training to make wet fart noises with your hands in another district. I walked him through just the notes, then the measures, then the annotations unique to strings (and bows), everything I had learned in the last 2 hours. Realizing there is plenty of work cut out for us, I ask him to break out his violin and demonstrate while Jaimi and I scramble to make a late dinner for the family.

There’s that special moment when you look at your spouse and you both know you’re on exactly the same page, that whatever the challenge is, it is yours together, and it will not defeat anyone in the household. You acknowledge with your eyes that this is about to suck. We had that moment while I was peeling shrimp and Jaimi was rinsing broccoli as we listened to the introduction to the slaughter of the St Lawrence Overture. It was time to come to my son’s defense, demand he put the device down, and for me to notify the instructor that the boy isn’t the right student for her, she’s not the right tutor for him and we all just need to move along quickly. No sense in wasting anyone’s time when there are serious education issues afoot.

It was really nice sitting on the sofa tonight, at 10:30, after the emails to educators where written, calls to the boy’s mom to get sign off on my plan, after the late-napping 2 year old was put back down to bed again, after dishes were done, after the boys had turned off their headlamps for their books, and Jaimi and I sat down – finally – agreeing not to recap the day. We just shut up. In 30 seconds we were both snoring.

Happy Monday.