All posts tagged: slide show

5 Big Sarcastic Thank Yous to the British for Poisoning My Son

We all know what island the imbecilic “Thomas the Train” hails from, and it ain’t Sanibel. It’s the mythic Island of Sodor, somewhere between the coasts of Britain and Braindead. Because of Thomas, we have spent 1.2 million dollars on trains and tracks. And what does my son do after I set up tracks? He places the trains around the track a few inches apart and stares at them. I try to push the $22 wooden blocks around my expertly crafted track, but he screams, “Noooo! Not that one!” Ellison doesn’t play with the trains. He stages them. Thank you, Great Britain, for making my son OCD. Then there’s the Thomas plot lines. In every story, one thing happens: someone disobeys orders. Every train from Diesel 10 to Paxton to Skarloey (actual names) seeks short cuts in daily tasks, thusly disobeying orders, thusly causing “confusion and delay”.


Certain events with the kids cause me serious angst: subway trips, birthday parties and plane trips. Subway trips mean we’ll be out for a long time. Beyond temper tantrums, this is what stresses me out: What if it’s a 105 degree summer day on the subway platform with 98% humidity and I get swamp-ass and people laugh at my wet khakis? What if the subway stops and we’re stuck inside for three hours without enough battery life on my phone to keep the kids quiet or enough goldfish snacks to keep ME happy? And then what if desperation drives me to pee between subway cars? Late on a Saturday night is one thing. But middle of day with other riders, my children and, well…sober? Would I get arrested in this extreme situation? Do the police want to deal with my screaming kids’ wrath?

8 Justifications for Childless Travel

Last February I frantically brain-stormed a last-minute timeshare getaway to warmer climes with the family. It would include our 2-year-old and 10-month-old. My stress over rising airline tickets and dwindling hotel availability prompted my partner to say, “You could just go on your own.” (Disclaimer #1: Getting away for an adult vacation wasn’t feasible. We don’t have family nearby on whom to foist two kids under 2 and we can’t afford 4 days of round-the-clock baby-sitting.) “What?” I sputtered. “Yeah, I mean it’s so much work to take the kids. It’s expensive, it’s a headache, and it’s not relaxing. I’m all about taking my own solo mini-vacation, later. You want to get away more than I do, right now, anyway.” (Disclaimer #2 True. I’d been very full-time daddy for the past couple months.) “So you just go for a couple days.”


Processed foods. I ate Mac’n Cheese, Kool-Aid, Fruity Pebbles, Pop Tarts and Fritos. And my kids will only have those on special occasions. Like Haley’s Comet visits. Now we worry about red dye, HFCS, and chemical additives that render food addictive. And we obsess over our kids eating vegetables. Actually, red dye confounds me. But I totally obsess over the veggies. In my childhood, canned creamed corn counted as a vegetable. And I will never serve that to my kids as a vegetable. Unless we’re camping. Actually, they can eat all those foods can be eaten when camping. All bets are off camping. But every day? Sorry guys. You’ll never have it as good as I did. Seat belts. My dad drove a Volvo in the early 80’s. There was a confusing black handle that jutted out from the dashboard. When riding in that car, I’d hold onto the black handle to get myself as close to the front windshield as possible. Occasionally Dad would ask, “Gavin, please sit back and put on your seatbelt.” …

6 Do’s and 3 Don’t’s When Expecting

Some very close friends are expecting babies, right now. Here’s some of my uncommon knowledge for them before their lives are wonderfully destroyed by blessed rugrats… 1. DO sit around playing mindless games on your phone and indulging guilty pleasures. You won’t have time for it ever again. Or if you do, it’ll only be for 17 seconds after you lay in bed, flip on your phone, pretend to “catch up”, and immediately fall asleep. 1. DON’T read any “expecting a baby” books. Trendy, “latest research” factoids muddle your brain. Seek advice from friends, and know that your parents’ example (or your friends’ parents’ examples) will be enough to get you through the first few months. 2. DO buy basic baby gear, but limit the rest. The basics: diapers, food, changing pad, swaddling blankets, sound machine, teething “chew toy”, baby swing, car seat, baby carrier (like bjorn, ergo or moby) and a stroller. That’s all you need, especially at the beginning. Babies have spent their first months in baskets, mangers, drawers and padded boxes for …