Posts Tagged ‘kids’
There is a good chance you know me as an artist. Although I have been known to throw paint around on occasion and there was also that time I owned and operated an art gallery for 8 years, but my real passion is making fun of my kids.
Let’s face it, they are a never ending source of silly circumstance, poor decisions and masters at doing things…well, doing stupid things. That might be the best way to describe it.
Yes, that’s Evelyn wearing Elliott’s sunglasses. Elliott is 1.5 years old and Evy is 11. James is wearing my glasses, which is funny because he thinks he looks cool and what he doesn’t realize is that my glasses are cheap and lame. With a name like “Sunbelt” what would you expect? I wear them because Coral laughs at them and I think she might actually be slightly embarrassed to associate with a dude that wears Sunbelts and if I can do anything to embarrass her I will. That, and Versace stopped sending me free pairs when they found out I was hawking them on ebay at a fraction of the suggested retail price of a gazillion dollars.
There is no doubt I did some stupid things when I was a kid too. Like that time I tried to get a circular saw blade to stick into the bottom of a tree house by throwing it as hard as I could straight up at it. Surprisingly, it didn’t stick and barely missed my head on it’s way down. I’ve even done some stupid things as an adult, but I also do my fair share of responsible things like pay my car registration on time, or a month late, but who’s keeping track, besides the DMV. Like I said, my kids, and probably all kids, create a vast pool of things to ridicule. So much, in fact, that we often dismiss these things because they happen so frequently, but we should really be writing them down because it’s only a matter of time before we forget the good ones, the really stupid/funny ones, and they grow up and start making real mistakes. The kind that cost us, the parents, lots of money, hair loss or our general sense of well being due to the stress of not knowing where your teenage daughter is at 2 o’clock in the morning. The past couple of weeks I’ve taken note of some of the strange, peculiar and just plain weird things my kids have done.
Before I get to that I would like to say one more thing. Part of getting the best material out of your kids is not distracting them too much when you see them doing something weird. Sit back and observe and only ask what they’re doing when it looks like they are done. If you ask them what they’re doing in the middle of what they consider to be a “brilliant idea” you might throw them off and ruin everything. Just let them be. Unless, of course, you smell smoke, hear glass breaking or can’t find the baby. Here we go. Enjoy!
James: “What are these called?”
Me: “Mandarin Oranges.”
James: “They are SO good…I love mangerines!”
Me: *stares blankly* (pause) Yes, they are tasty.
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Evy dropped James’ overpriced headphones in the sink.
And blamed him for it.
I think the logic was that if he hadn’t asked for them back she wouldn’t have taken them off and dropped them.
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Evelyn is the Queen Of Ridiculous Ailments. Seriously, everyday it is something. You know the story about the boy that cried wolf? That’s Evy, but she cries disease. Stuff like, “I can’t do PE today because I woke up with a sore throat 4 days ago. Can you write me a note?” Her most popular one is getting out of bed after lights out to complain about an upset stomach, a cough, sore throat, hurt knee, etc. The thing is she mentions NOTHING about it in the hours leading up to bedtime. She also does this in the morning in an attempt to stay home from school. A couple of weeks ago she actually threw up (self fulfilling prophecy, perhaps?) and it was totally gross, but it was reason enough to keep her home. She’s generally a pretty sassy little thing, but something about being sick turned her into a real sweetheart. She was polite and loving and a real joy to be around. In a way, I almost wished she was sick more often.
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Last weekend at 11:07pm Coral told the kids it was time to brush their teeth and to be in bed by 11:30pm. At 11:15pm James asked if he could watch “Adventures In Babysitting.” I know that he knows movies are longer than 15 minutes. Coral and I just look at each other like, “huh?”
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I found James in the kitchen buttering a slice of sourdough. As soon as he was done buttering it he tossed it in the toaster oven. I thought this was weird, but maybe some people do this and it’s quite possible that it’s awesome and I’ve been missing out my whole life.
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I love this one.
Evelyn had a bowl of cereal and I was waiting to see if she was going to pour the leftover milk down the sink, drink it, or do what I do and add more cereal. She set the bowl on the counter and walked away. I paused before telling her to wash the bowl and I’m glad I did because she grabbed this…
and ground some into the leftover milk. My first instinct was to say, “What the shit?”, but I held my tongue and observed. She drank it, looked at me and said, “It sort of tastes like horchata.” and downed the rest of it.
Yesterday Coral took the boys on a walk. At some point she told James to give Elliott a box of raisins. It never crossed James’ mind to open the box for Elliott, but no problem. Elliott’s like, “I got this!” And ate his way through the box.
I find myself asking questions like, “Does this kid have any common sense? How, at 12 years old, does he not know that this is wrong and disrespectful?”
Let’s face it, we’ve eaten in the car plenty of times. I would assume, at this point, that James knows how fast food in the car works. You get a bag of food. Mom distributes the food accordingly to the different passengers. The passengers eat the food. Then all the food wrappers go back in the bag from which they came. I would assume that all members of the family, if not the entire population of America, would be conditioned to this fast food ritual. And if they didn’t learn this behavior by repeatedly doing it I am sure that they would come up with it on their own by the time they reach age 12. But no. Not our James.
He is perfectly content leaving a pile of greasy trash stuffed into the door handle of my car.
Part of me is almost willing to accept that behavior as “ok”, but there’s a catch. It might be acceptable if the trash is removed when the car stops at our destination and is disposed of in a trash can. Unfortunately, this doesn’t even cross his mind. Would you like to know what he did instead? Oh, I’m sure you would. He high tailed it into the house and pretended he was throwing up because he “ate too much” and therefore could not help unload the car after our weekend getaway. Now picture a family of five and how packed a car might be when that family leaves town for the weekend. Yeah, thanks for helping, buddy. Also, you are welcome for the yummy In-N-Out dinner as well as the bag full of new clothes we bought you at Target on the way home.
After hearing his “too sick” excuse it took all of my will power to not ram my finger down my own throat and throw up on top of his head while yelling, “You mean you threw up like this!” Instead, I confiscated his iPod and scrolled through it for embarrassing blog worthy material. Thankfully, his camera roll delivered the goods.
I especially love the “hand going through hair” and “hand behind head” poses. I’m pretty sure he thinks he is pulling off this look exactly.
Well, he isn’t.
As the kids get older the sweetness disappears and is, unfortunately, replaced with back talking, sass, and bullshit.
As a result, I’ve picked up a drinking habit. Nothing to be too concerned about…yet.
Parent Survival Kit
After a long weekend of telling children to do the same thing 5,000 times and getting eyes rolled at me in response I had no choice but to break out the bottle of Kahlua and mix myself a big fat cup of a White Russian. The version I make is pretty ghettoized, but real tasty. The Claassen style White Russian is simply Kahlua and whatever milk I can find in the fridge mixed in a big cup of ice. It’s delicious. I’ve never been a beer drinker and only had a brief stint as a wine drinker in my mid twenties when I was going through a Bukowski phase, which I should probably be embarrassed about, but I tend to look at it more like a rite of passage kind of thing for any young writer.
Anyway, the long weekend of dealing with sassy, selfish, back talking children has led me to develop my own personal “Parent Survival Kit”. The kit includes a White Russian mixed in the biggest cup you can find in the house and two peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. For best results it is highly suggested that the kit is administered after all the children in the house have gone to bed. You will need a comfy place to sit where you can elevate your feet. Personally, my couch is perfect for this, but laying in bed wouldn’t be a bad place either. If you find solace in absolute quiet then find a nice quiet spot. For me it’s listening to music through fancy headphones (not those bullshit “earbuds”), feet up on the couch, dimly lit room, window open to allow for a slight breeze. Absolute heaven.
I will live to fight another day.
We were driving somewhere. Just James, Evy, and myself, which is a typical scenario. At some point Evy, who happens to have total disregard for the “too much information” etiquette, announces that she has a wedgie.
“Good to know.” I said.
“But…it’s a front wedgie.” She informed us.
See what I mean, too much information doesn’t exist in this child’s psyche. Of course, I only seem to groom her for such behavior as evidenced by how I responded.
“You mean a…vagegie?” (That’s pronounced “va-je-gee”. If my attempt at spelling it phonetically doesn’t help, just combine the words “vagina” and “wedgie”, which are two words that really should never be used together in a sentence.)
The kids are ten and twelve, they know the proper names for their anatomy (and some improper ones too) at this point and instantly got my joke. When Evy was about five or six she asked Coral if there was another name for her “peepee”. Coral told her it was called a vagina and evy responded with, “that’s a pretty name,” which you should say out loud in your best five year old innocent little girl voice. I have to admit, it was a pretty cute response.
After my ingenious invention of the pun “vagegie” the kids took the idea and ran with it like a couple of Indians chasing down a herd of buffalo. I’ve since forgotten all the variations of puns they came up with for “vagina wedgie”, but one of them was so good it has been seared into my memory. James blurted out “Leonardo da Vegie”, which of course, is a reference to the Italian Renaissance painter and the best pun I’ve heard since Evy referred to Regina Spektor as “Vagina Inspector”.
Are these kids geniuses or what? If not, then it can not be argued that they are certainly prodigies of puns.
James does some things around the house that make all of us shake our heads and wonder, “What was he thinking? Why would he do that?” Even after hearing his explanation we still ask ourselves these questions. To put if frankly, the kid just doesn’t make sense sometimes. It’s these odd behaviors that make him who he is, so although we don’t understand him all the time, we still love the goofy little guy.
Recently, James has discovered that he likes ice. Either that or he just realized that I keep ice trays in the freezer. Personally, I love ice. Now that I have to share my ice I’ve set some simple ground rules, which are this: the orange ice cube trays are not to be touched, they are MINE!
The other night I followed James into the kitchen to show him how to get the cubes out of the low grade white plastic ice tray that he’s been given access to. My orange trays are rubber and the cubes just pop right out with minimal effort. I want the boy to work for his cubes so he gets the bad tray that forces you to twist and contort so that when the cubes do break free some of them pop out with such force they hit you in the face or fall on the floor. Once I felt he understood what to do I left him in the kitchen. A minute later I heard the microwave going. What could he be microwaving? I decided to investigate. After all, he had already eaten dinner and I knew he couldn’t be making hot cocoa since he just filled a cup with ice.
“What’s going on?” I asked when I entered the kitchen.
All I got for a response was a blank stare.
“What’s in the microwave?”
Then it beeped and he opened the microwave door and pulled his cup out of it. The cup he had filled with ice a minute earlier.
“Did you just microwave ice?” I asked, laughing.
“Because I wanted some water.”
Makes sense…I guess.
As it turns out our bottled Crystal Springs water was empty and James didn’t want to drink water from the faucet.
“James, you do know that we use the faucet to fill the ice trays, right?”
“Ohh…” Then he added, “so that’s why my water tastes funny.”
This kid, I tell ya.