Isabella (she’s 5): Daddy, how do you spell “Butterfly?”

Me: Well… You know how to spell Butter, right?

Iz: Um… Not really.

Me: Uh, you know how to spell Butt, right.

Iz: Hehehehe…. Butt. Yeaaaah…

Me: Ok, start there…. What do you have?

Iz: Teehee. I don’t want to say. Can I show you?

(She brings me her drawing.)

Me: Yes, Honey. Butt.

Iz: Hahahahaha! You said Butt.

Me: Relax. Now, “Er” and “Fly.” Can you handle that.

Iz: Yes, I can. Is there a fly in your butt? But, why is there a But In Your Butt. Does it fly? Hahahahaha!

Victoria’s Secret

The mailman mistakenly delivered the neighbor’s winter Victoria’s Secret catalog to our doorstep the other day.

This did not escape my attention.

While I was using the catalog… Um, sorry… I mean perusing the catalog (you know, to find the correct address… a-hemmm), I eventually came to the realization:

As a father, my daughters will NEVER have the terms “Pink” or “Juicy” emblazoned across the asses of their form-fitting yoga pants. It’s not a frickin’ billboard!

Plus, really? You’d pay THAT for a thong?

To the wife: Well, if you insist, Dear. I’m perfectly Ok with thongs whatever the price…

Plus… Page 33, I’m looking at you.


Driving the girls in to school yesterday, Isabella (remember, she’s five) says:

Iz: Daddy, I know why you’re driving us today.

Me: Why is that, Sweetie?

Iz: Because, Mommy has to go downtown so she can go to Germany.

Me: Uh… No, Honey. Not “Germany.” “Jury Duty.” But, I can see how you’d make that mistake. They sound a lot alike.

Iz: I don’t understand.

Me: Well… One is a place where historically, and unfortunately, you could be forced to show your papers, held against your Will indefinitely, subjected to endless interrogation, and become part of a show trial.

Iz: Blink.

Me: And, the other one is a country in Europe!! Get it? Europe! Funny stuff.

Iz: Daaad!

Me: Ok, try this one. I said, “Doody!!”

Iz: Hahaha! Doody.

Thanks to all my German friends (and family!) for having a sense of humor. Also, to the Judicial System.

I’m sure some of you saw both of those jokes from a mile away…

Cuddle Up

Ladies, if you should ever happen to find yourself sleeping with me (and by that, I mean actually sleeping), there’s something you should know: I’m a bit of a cuddler.

My primary snuggle-buddy (i.e. my beautiful wife of 20+ years) is generally tolerant of this strange, strange fetish. Call her crazy.

I understand, though, that everyone needs their own space (even my gorgeous wife), and wants to roll over and let the blood settle to the other side.

It is at these times that I turn to my secondary cuddle bunny. She is French. Her name is “Sofá Cushón.” I greatly appreciate her frequent availability. (Even my wife is Ok with her. Bonus! I guess.) But, between you and me, Sofá’s a bit cold. And stiff. Plus, I think she’s stealing the loose change from my pockets. She can be a bit of a bitch sometimes, too.

Why am I sharing this? Well, I’m feeling more than a little nostalgic.

As a regular reader, you know that I have two daughters, Julianna (8) and Isabella (5). They both LOVE to snuggle with Daddy. Until recently, bedtime notices began with “Who wants to snuggle with Daddy?” and the response from both girls was, in stereo, “Meeee!”

The other day, I made my bedtime call: “Who wants to snuggle with Daddy?”

Isabella yelled: “Meeee!”

But, Julianna retorted: “You can have him. I’m good.”


So, I cuddle up with Isabella while Julianna slips into her own bed. To Isabella, I sing… “Twinkle, Twinkle….” “Rock a Bye Baby…” “You Are My Sunshine.” I scratch Iz’s back. Zzzzz.

I slip out of her bed. But, I notice that Julianna is piled up against the wall, covered with pillows and blankets. Most of the bed is wide open.

Just for a second, I think: I could fit there. And snuggle. In her bed…

But, she doesn’t need me. She’s “Good.” I pause for a moment, then trog to the Master Bedroom.

I schlepp off to bed. I snuggle with the familiar, warming, comforting, softness of my lovely wife.

Mmmm. Softness.

But, still…

I’m ever mindful that my time with my baby girls is limited. Soon enough, sunggling with them will move from Awwww to Ewwwww.

I know that my insomnia will ultimately end with my leaping into the waiting arms of a La-Z-Boy!

Which reminds me:

Gentlemen: If you should ever find yourself sleeping with me, then either we are in a fox hole because our nation is under attack, or we are the targets of a wacky “I Love Lucy” mistaken-identity skit. Either way, there’s something you should know: I’m a bit of a cuddler.

Go to Sleep…

I’ve been having problems getting to sleep lately. The Doctor prescribed a limited course of Ambien. So far, so good. But, the side effects are an issue:

The label reads:

“You may make phone calls, driven your car, prepared and eaten food or had sex while you were not fully awake while using Ambien.”

I can’t resist…

Herewith are a couple morning-after wisecracks:

– Best Bumper Car Ride Ever!

– The wife says: Directions! Honey, there’s no shame in asking for Directions. Next time: Ask for Directions!

– I always assumed she had to be “fully” asleep. I didn’t know there was an option.

– I know it was quick. But, I thought I was driving a Ferrari.

Going to sleep… Zzzzz…

Boo Boo

So, I was looking to catch my daily dose of American Popular Culture when my remote control landed on the TLC Channel. Years ago, TLC stood for “The Learning Channel,” when they produced, you know, “educational” and “informational” programming. Times have changed.

That was long before they tripped over ‘Hoarders’ or ‘Strange Sex’ or “Toddlers” with “Tiaras” beauty pageants.

Which brings me to my story…

I’m sitting with the eight-year-old Julianna.

J: Ooo, Daddy! Look at that cute little girl!

Me: Do I have to?

J: Can we watch?

The little girl is called “Honey Boo Boo,” because she should never be considered an accident. Apparently, she is one of those child beauty pageant contestants. America, shame on you.

After watching for a minute or so…

J: Daddy, I can’t understand what she is saying.

Me: I know, Sweetie. They keep writing the words on the TV so we know what they are saying.

Julianna pauses and reflects.

J: But, Daddy… Why should I watch TV if I have to read? Shouldn’t I just grab a book?

Me: Yes, Honey! Let’s get a book!

Honey Boo Boo. Keeping America’s kids literate since a week ago last Thursday. (There’s your slogan!)

What Goes Around

Julianna (she’s 8): Daddy, what’s Karma?

Me: Wow, tough question. Um, well, some people think there’s a magical force in the world…

J: So, it’s myth.

Me: Well, Sweetie. Lots of people think that if you do Good Things, then Good Things will happen to you. And, if you do Bad Things, then Bad Things will happen to you.

J: Daddy, is that true?

Me: I don’t know. I mean, you do lots of Bad Things, but you seem to only get Good Things. Sooo…

J: Aha! Like I said: It’s a Myth! Can I have ice cream?

The Song About Me

After picking up Julianna (8) and Isabella (5) from school yesterday, Isabella wants to sing me a song she just wrote.

As a classically-trained composer, nothing could tickle me more.

Iz: Daddy, I’m going to sing a song about ME.

Oh God. Another self-centered narcissistic composer. Welcome to Hollywood.

She begins to sing. Her intonation is atrocious, and the melody is derivative of every other song she has ever written. Like Green Day.

Still, she comes up with a great story:

(I’m not quite sure what key she is in. So, there, she’s got her Daddy’s sense of pitch.)

She sings:

Here’s a song about a little girl…
Her name is Isabella.
And she is me, me, me.
She is a little girl.
And she is Me.
Let me tell you about Me.
Me, me, me.
And the best thing is:
She loves Daaaaaa-ddy.

Everyone: Awwwww.

Didn’t see that coming.

The Sun’s Axis

Julianna (she’s eight): Daddy, you know how Santa Claus begins giving gifts to some kids before others?

Me: Yeah, Honey, he does. But, it’s October. That doesn’t happen for a few months. But, yes, Christmas Day begins in Australia and Japan first.

J: But, how does a day begin for some people, and for other people, the day starts later?

Me: Well, Honey, the earth spins on its axis. Daytime begins for some people before others.

J: I don’t understand. How can time change? Is NOW different here than somewhere else?

Me: No. Um, well, like I said… the earth rotates on its axis, and then there’s the sun.

J: But, Time starts and goes forward, right? You can’t go back in Time. So, why does Santa give toys to kids in Japan before us?

Me: Uh, a Day is a measure of time. And, the earth spins. There’s an Axis…. Wait.

(Holy CRAP! She’s right. Time. Space. Continuum. Someone help me…)

Me: Well, Einstein said….

J: You lost me.

Me: Yeah, I thought I would. Look, there are Time Zones. And Gravity. And Time. And Black Holes.

J: (blink, blink.)

Me (Jazzing it up!): Science! It’s complicated, Sweety. Love Science!

J: So, do you know what I’m getting before Santa does?

Me: Yeah. Kind of.

Honey Smacks

My “I’m a terrible person” meme that populates Daddy/Daughter Fun Time isn’t the result of my low self-esteem, awful childhood memories, or failure to take my meds. Though, my therapist might want to weigh in on the subject. (That is, if I had a therapist. Rimshot!)

No, it comes from being told point blank: “You are a terrible person.” Repeatedly. For years on end. By my wonderful, beautiful, engaging, and loving children.

Do you sense a story? (Oh good, I have you trained.)

We’re not off to a good morning. Someone is running late. Someone won’t put her shoes on. Someone is just being a jerk. Mommy is trying to get dressed to take them to school. Breakfast is my job today.

I call to Julianna (she’s eight): Julianna! Turn off the Rugrats and come eat your Lucky Charms.

J: But, I can’t miss Rugrats. It’s my favoritest one ever.

Me: Honey, I don’t care. You have to eat. Let’s go. You have to leave in a few minutes.

J: No! I hate Lucky Charms. I can’t miss Rugrats!

Then, going from 0 to 100 in about 2 sentences.

J: You’re a horrible father!

She’s right, of course. I suck. I know it. Short, fat, kinda dumb, socially awkward, inept at just about everything, unable to relate to a small child in any significant way. Clumsy. Lacking the most basic sense of humor. Old. Stiff. Emotionally remote. Unskilled. Cold. With no compassion for other people or animals. And, kinda stinky.

I get it. But, still…

Me: Eat your Goddamn cereal! It’s Magically Fucking Delicious!

Yeah, I didn’t actually say that. I just thought it so loud in my head that I was sure she could hear it.

Now, here comes Act 2.

Isabella (she’s five, and whiny): Daaaddddeeeee. I’m hungryyyyy.

Me: Ok, what do you want? Oatmeal? Eggs?… Waffle?

Iz: Can I have Honey Smacks?

Me: No, Honey. We’re all out. Sorry.

Iz: What do you mean we’re out? (She starts to ratchet it up.) You knew we were out yesterday! Why didn’t you go to the store?!

Me (trying to remain calm): Sweety, we have plenty of stuff you can eat.

Iz (here come the waterworks): Waaaah!! I only want Honey Smacks. And, you didn’t buy them. You should have gone to the store! So, now I can’t eat anything. Waaah!!

Me: Puppy, please stop crying.

Iz: No! And, you can’t make me! You’re a horrible father!

So, you see. Obviously irrefutable evidence of my total suckage.

You know, that therapist idea is starting to sound better.