Friday, January 4, 2008

This post, however, IS about my children

As I've mentioned, I own many, many parenting books. And they are all wrong.

Okay, not entirely wrong. And actually in our house we never say "You're wrong" we say " I fear you may be mistaken." It's all about preserving the self esteem (1)

But I digress. Everything I've read in my books says that you should not label your kids. That by pigeon-holing them, you create a self-fulfilling prophecy. Malarkey. How else are you going to decide which kid is your favorite?

Take Jake. He's my smart kid. Jake likes to go to the library and takes out books like Schaum's Outline of College Physics. For fun.

Class of 2020

True story. We were all at a play date at my friend Linda's house. We were having this exact conversation and she asked if I thought one of my kids was smarter than the others. With perfect sit-com timing Jake came up to us. "So here's the thing," he started. "Your cat only has one eye. Do you think that affects his ability to see three-dimensionally? Could I do some experiments on the cat?"(2)

So reasons Jake should be my favorite: He'll take care of me when I'm old.

Noa is my spunky kid. The imagination on that one scares the crap out of me sometimes. Remember when PCSguy and I had that bet? He asked the kids if anyone had been to a mall with Mommy and Noa said "Yes. The one with the DSW and the nail polish store." Just to fuck with me.

Noa used to have a whole family of imaginary friends; sixteen relatives all named Bert. They lived in a large house that was totally decked out in chandeliers. Anytime we'd go someplace nice, Noa would scope out the lighting fixtures and announce "Bert has that in the kitchen (guest bathroom, laundry room)"

Unfortunately a few years ago Bert died unexpectedly. He had a job pushing buttons at the Nenter-Center (3) and he fell out a high window. Luckily he left 15 sons to keep Noa company. However, over the next few months, all fifteen Berts had perished under very suspicious circumstances. At first we were worried that Noa had unexplained anxiety; now we know she's just capricious. We try to sleep in shifts.

Remember that play date when I was pretending all my kids were equally smart? At the exact second that Jake was conducting cat-eye-exams, Noa was trying to free herself from the baby's gymini. She had climbed in to look at herself in the little plastic mirror and got stuck.
Manufacturers recommended age: 3-7 months and quirky six year olds

Reasons Noa should be my favorite: It's best to stay on her good side.

1) I typed that with a straight face. Like I'm staying up nights worrying about my kids' self esteem. But I was serious that we don't say "wrong." Technically we say "Daddy, I believe you are mistaken."
2) Linda is a very good friend, however her answer was still no.
3)Like what we imagine PCSguy does all day.

1 comment:

First Time Dad said...

So books like the Secret of the Baby Whisperer are complete tripe? This is a very worrying development....

Blog is an excellent read!