Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Scenes From the Field Museum Bathroom

It was somewhere between Bub’s observations of the man-eating lions of Tsavo (“Doggy!”) and Sue the T-Rex (“Ooh, biiiig doggy!”) that it hit me—I had to take a dump.

I’d never been in this position before, and the reality was beginning to crash down. I couldn’t just leave him outside for five minutes--somebody might take him. I couldn’t even leave him outside the stall for five minutes--somebody might wash his hands. I had no choice—he would have to watch.

As soon as I closed the stall door, Bub gave me a look like I just threw the last bubble wand in the world into the Grand Canyon.

“Daddy open! Door open!” he said. Did I mention he has no concept of a toilet voice?

“Daddy’s gonna go to the bathroom, Bub,” I whispered.

“Daddy PEEEEEE!” he screamed. Oh, God. This wasn’t starting well at all. But the little bugger gave me an idea. Perhaps simply urinating could alleviate some pressure in certain other areas. Colon subterfuge. It would work, it had to work.


“That’s right, Bub, Daddy’s making apple juice.”

“Yummy! Apple juice!”

“Shh. Just drink your apple juice, Bub.”

I guess I never thought any of this was weird until I remembered we were in a public place. Then it was all weird. Whispers near the hand-dryer.

“Oh, man, this isn’t working, Bub,” I confessed.

“NOT WORKING! NOT WORKING!” he screamed, pointing at my penis.

“Bub, help Daddy out here. Just sit down and relax. No, shit, don’t sit down. It’s a bathroom floor. It’s very dirty. Just stand there. Over there. Don’t touch the door, please. You want your phone? Just give me a couple minutes.”

“Shit! OHHHHHH, SHIT!” Really, that’s what you heard?

“Yes, Daddy is SITTING.”


“Yeah, Bub, Daddy’s pooping. Can you please stop staring directly into my eyes right now?”

Now I’ve taken a hundred dumps in front of this kid with nary a tinge of self-consciousness, but it was different under those hot, hot lights of the Field Museum men’s room. I closed my eyes, tried to find my centering point.

“HUUUUUUUHHHHHHHH! Pooping!” Bub said.

And sure enough, there he was, crouched in the corner of the stall, face turning red, drool hanging off his chin. It was like looking in the mirror. And just like that, we had our first SPE (Simultaneous Pooping Experience). It was a moment. Then we went out and looked at the dusty old dinosaur bones.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Lunching With the Bubster

So Bub and I are sitting at the table yesterday, having lunch. Pretty familiar scene, happens three times a day, every day. And, as usual, it’s taking him three times as long to eat 1/10 the food I do. So I’m finished, doing my crossword, trying to ignore him wriggling his little arm through a hole in the high chair and wave to himself. Not like a bullet hole, it’s designed that way. To piss parents off, I think. Then he waves to me, toothy grin, ricotta cheese in his hair. ‘Hiiiiiiii, Daddy.’ Yep, we’re proud of him.

I redirect him to his plate, which he pokes at the way a grown man would a cockroach on its back. Waiting for something to happen, relieved it didn’t. He’s unsatisfied, listless. He looks over at the counter and points at the lasagna pan from whence his neglected meal came.

B: Bunnies!

M: Bunnies? You mean like bunny rabbits? Like hop hop?

B: (getting emphatic) Bunnies! Bunnies! Bunnies!

M: (realizing he has a small brain and has over-generalized the pan) Ohhhh, BROWNIES? No, that’s lasagna, Bub. You’re eating it right now.

B: Bunnies.

M: Do you want some (imaginary) brownies?

B: Hot!

M: Yes, sometimes brownies are hot.

B: Cool off!

M: Yep, cool off.

B: Have it?

M: Bub, the question is CAN I HAVE IT?

B: Pease?

M: No, say CAN I…

B: Have it?


B: Pease?

M: Can I...

B: Have it?


B: Pease?

M: But you don’t even like chocolate, Bub.

B: Spicy.

M: It’s not spicy. Bitter, maybe, but not spicy.

B: (nodding to my imaginary agreement) Spicy.

M: Fine, whatever, chocolate is spicy. Eat your fucking lasagna. Pease?

Monday, September 10, 2012

Mark it Eight, Dude

Just look at that focus.

Ah, the extremes of a talking toddler…Couple weeks ago, I put Bub to bed, ask him for a kiss, get one, then he says to me, ‘One more?’ I almost cried on the spot.

And then sometimes he says BOWLING 84 times in a row in the back seat, where, conveniently, ‘Daddy no reach.’ Actually, his L sucks, so it’s more like BOW-ING, BOOOOWING.

What? How? It was the Wii. Same place he got ‘BOOM! Nice shot’ and ‘Doggy Swords.’ Don’t ask. Here is an excerpt from the conversation (with tactical notes):

Bub: Boom, nice shot! Boom, nice shot! Ohhhhhhhh, bowing! Bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing!

Me: (Play dumb, hope he confuses himself and says something else) What’s that Bub?

Bub: Bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing bowing bowing!

Me: (Okay, acknowledge the word, he’ll move on) Oh, you want to play bowling?

Bub: (Because his L’s suck) Pease?

Me: (Lying my ass off) Okay, maybe when we get home.

Bub: Bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing!

Me: (Telling the truth) We can’t bowl in the car, Bub. (Laying some repeat bait) We don’t have any balls. Or pins. Or shoes.

Bub: Shoes OFF!

Me: (Riding great wave of success, getting cocky) Oh, you took your shoes off, huh? (Getting cocky now) How many shoes do you have?

Bub: Two shoes. Bowing, bow--!

Me: (Desperation non-sequitur) How many feet do you have, Bub?

Bub: Five! Bowing, bowing, bow--

Me: (Resorting to his language) Different one?

Bub: Ahhhhhh, NO, DaddYYY! Bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing, bowing…

Me: (Marking it fucking zero, dude) Yeah, bowling. I love bowling. Hey Bub, have you ever been bowling? It is AWESOME!!! (Turn radio up, sob quietly)

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Father Bemoans State of Current Toddler Black Market

After what he calls and “exhaustive” search covering a 2 block radius, a local father known as Daddy was appalled to learn that his toddler is worth next to nothing on the streets.

“Must be the economy,” Daddy said. “People just aren’t plunking down for babies the way they used to.”

This comes fresh on the heels of Daddy listing Bub on eBay, a failed twenty minute endeavor that ended with zero bids and a devastated child.

“Somebody just paid three grand for Lindsey Lohan’s skidmarked thong, and I can’t get a minimum bid of twenty bucks?” Bub said. “Ouch, world.”

“A guy a couple alleys over that offered me 60 bucks and a free kidney, but I thought, ‘Hey, I can do better,’” Daddy said. “The one that got away, huh?”

Asked if he thought his nearly two year-old son, Bub, was truly worth just sixty dollars, Daddy said, “Okay, I’ll take forty. And I’ll throw in one of my kidneys.”

You know it’s illegal to traffic any human being, right?

“Well, so is speeding. So is jaywalking. So is breaking into your neighbor’s apartment, trying on all his track suits and then taking a dump in his Florsheims,” Daddy said. “Besides, I wouldn’t really call him traffic. More of a speed bump.”

Asked what he would say to Daddy if he were to take five minutes to actually talk to his son, Bub said: “Watch your Florsheims.”

Asked what he was going to do now, since the options on unloading his firstborn seem to be dwindling, Daddy said:

“Probably take him to Target. They’ll take any returns without a receipt.”