Monday, June 23, 2008

Well, I guess everyone has to start somewhere...

I created this account so I could comment on other people's blogs. I have a habit of leaving long posts in others' comments that would be better written up in my own blog and linked... Until now, I've just never done it.

AD's link to LL's post about her embarrassing conversation with her daughter, and his link to one of his stories about his Mom made me finally hit the switch. Believe it or not, I think I can compete with both of them for pure hilarity, ickiness, embarassment and self-humiliation.

Yeah, that's a tall order, and some stiff competition. The story rocks, but I'm not so sure of my ability to tell it... In any case, here goes.

I need to set the stage with a bit of background.

I'd been through a bad marriage and a horrible divorce, and was still fighting an even uglier battle over the custody of my two daughters. I'd sworn I'd never again consider marriage, when life -- defined by a wise person as "what happens to us when we make other plans" -- intervened.

I met BB at work. She was everything I'd want my daughters to grow up to be. Beautiful, educated, hard-working, accomplished... The total package. I was smitten. Time passed, and we ended up together. I'll no doubt elaborate on HOW that happened some other time -- it's another pretty cool story -- but there it is. We'd eventually moved in together.

BB had 2 kids also -- a boy and a girl -- each several years older than mine. The Boy was in the 8th grade -- a difficult time at best -- and suffering from all the ills of any other adolescent boy. This story occurred a few short months after we'd combined our households -- we were still figuring things out, but The Boy and I got along surprisingly well, all things considered.

BB on the other hand was having a bit of a crisis of her own, as most women will at this difficult time. Seeing her offspring mature often leads women to fear their own maturation, and add to this that she'd recently found her first gray hair and... well... Let's just say things were a bit sensitive. My mission was to not allow her to fall off that precipice, as I was rather fond of the passionate woman with whom I'd been blessed and didn't want to screw that up.

So we come home one night, having gone out for a while to watch a friend's band play. I always ended up sitting in and singing for a set or so with them, this night was no different. The Boy had been home, alone, and I'd eventually realized that it was time to get BB home before she turned into a pumpkin. Home we went, to find Boy had already headed off to dreamland.

As I went through the living room, on my way to the hall and our bedroom, I noticed a magazine laying on the floor next to the sofa. Something led me to check it out, as we weren't really "magazine folk". I'd never actually seen one in our house before. When I saw what it was, I quickly "stashed" it -- the last thing I needed at that point was for BB to find The Boy's Playboy -- THAT would have thrown a monkey-wrench into MY plans for the evening, to say the least...

Later, when I had the opportunity, I buried it in the trash can outside, thinking The Boy's panic and frantic attempts to locate it would teach him a valuable lesson, then did my best to forget about it.

The next morning, he was TRYING to be slick while looking for it. I could see the beads of sweat on his forehead as he meandered through the house, trying to appear nonchalant as he frantically tried to locate his missing stash. I was fighting back a laugh, watching him try to look under furniture while pretending he wasn't looking at all.

Unable to resist yanking his chain a bit, I stirred the pot...

"Did'ja LOSE SOMETHING Boy? Hmm??"

Those with kids of any age know that little spasm that goes through them when they're busted. It's an involuntary full-body twitch that most parents would recognize, and probably think it's just their kid. It's not. It hit him hard, like a spasm.

(Twitch) "Huh?... " He stammered...
"I didn't... "
"I'm not... "
"I'm cool."

"Are you SURE? You seem like you're looking for something..." Yeah, I'm a sadist.

"Nah. I'm just -- ... you know... Chillin'.... (shrug) Whatever..." He began to redden, fiercely.

"OK. Well look, if you ever DID lose something, just tell me what it is and I'll help you look for it, OK?" I said, unable to completely bury the smirk I felt. He was too panicked, and too busy trying to hide it, to notice. His ears were by this time red as a tomato, but I pretended not to notice THAT.

I had no way at all to know what to do, as my Father's solution to most problems was the back of his hand or a thick leather belt. I shudder to think what he'd have done in this situation, so I was on my own.

Bear in mind that I'm trying real hard to be "the cool Dad" here -- no point in TOTALLY embarrassing the kid, but I need to send the message that I know what he's missing, hopefully he'll figure out I found it, and this will solve the problem without any oogy confrontation.

Alas, this was not to be.

A few days later, I found another one in the same EXACT place, on the floor, right next to the sofa. This one I buried too, saying nothing and hoping the worry would teach the lesson. I'm an optimist, or a coward. I prefer optimist, if it's all the same to you.

It's important, for context, to understand: I was fighting for custody of my daughters -- then aged 5 and 3 -- who spent every weekend with us at this time. The LAST thing I needed was for one of them to find one of his magazines and for the story to get back to their Mom. O-M-F-G: I can only imagine the uproar that would have caused. While this was fun, in a twisted sort of way, it was also important. Critically so.

Further, delaying BB's awareness of her son's budding sexuality was likewise in my best interest -- if she saw his... er... materials ... well -- let's just say it wasn't likely to be good for MY sex life,


So I buried them.

A few days later, BB went into The Boy's room to put away some laundry.

I hadn't really noticed, but I couldn't miss the mourning wail that shattered the quiet morning stillness in my love-nest.


I'd only heard similar vocalizations at funerals up to this point in my life -- the sound was pure pain and grief.

I ran down the hall, heart pounding, wondering "who died?", to find BB holding yet another Playboy magazine.

"My BAAAAAY-BEEEEeee's been looking at POOOOOOOOOR-NOOOOOOoooo!!!" She cried, as huge, painful sobs wracked her body.


"Why you stupid little...." is what I thought, finally awakening to the realization that The Boy really WAS that stupid, and "that which I feared" has come upon me.

What I SAID was "Where'd you find THAT?" -- knowing like most men that feigning ignorance was MY only hope at this point.

"It was laying on his beeeeeeeed" she wailed. "Whatta we gonna DOOooooooo??!!"

I admit -- I thought she was sorta overreacting, but then I did have some grasp of the psychological harm this revelation would cause, as I pointed out before. Women never make sense to me, but sometimes I know how they'll react ...

Time to take charge.

"WE aren't going to do anything. YOU are going to let ME handle this."

"But.... But... But... " She snuffled, and started crying again.

I tossed the evidence on his bed, pulled her out of the room and into my arms and let her cry it out.

"Hey -- look on the bright side -- at least it's GIRLS,..." I said -- " can at least be happy about THAT, right?"

Apparently I'd just found yet another difference between Mars and Venus, as this kicked off another crop of wails and tears. Guess not...

Eventually she got it all out of her system, and I was able to get down to business.

I needed to teach him a lesson, but again -- I didn't want to TOTALLY wreck the kid, and had never had to deal with anything like this before.

I confess that cowardice, a desire for revenge, the aforementioned fear of one of The Girls finding them, and a REAL need to handle the situation all did battle in my head.

How can I send the message that needs to be sent, in a way he'll never forget, and solve this problem without a confrontation?

*I* don't want to have to do this... I mean... YUCK!!

Then I spotted the pad of big Post-It notes next to the phone in the kitchen -- you know the ones that are about 5" x 7" and look like a mini yellow legal pad? -- and knew what I had to do.

I grabbed one of these, and a sharpie, and made a note that looked something like this:

I then pasted it right in the middle of his magazine, where the arrow was pointing to an appropriate subject, and put the magazine right back where Mom had found it. Grinning like a maniac, I exited his room and closed his door.

I admit - I can be a bit of a sadist. I'm sure my male readers -- if they've put themselves in the boy's position -- can imagine how it must have ruined his ... er... rhythm (yeah, that's it... rhythm...) when he found it. I sort of imagine the soundtrack to his little fantasy coming to a screeching halt, with the painful noise of a needle being dragged across a record.


I must confess that even now I'm pretty proud of this solution. At least I'd like to be... Sorta...

A couple of days later I noticed the wadded-up Post-It note in the kitchen can. I just knew then that my mission was accomplished. Surely THIS will fix this -- right?

Alas... it was not to be.

To be continued...



Jeff B said...

Sadist? Yeah, maybe a little. Funny? Oh, for certain.

Keep writing.

LL said...

I LOVE IT SO FAR! Quit being a tease! *grin*

Sparrow said...

Get cracking and finish this sucker! I am TOTALLY drawn in! The note was pure genius...

June Cleaver said...

Oh, definitely finish. My kids are only 3 and I'm keeping notes from all your more experienced parents on how to handle these...sticky situations.

Ambulance Driver said...

Got me interested. Where's Part Two?

Fyremandoug said...

This you must continue

it is some prime stuff

kdzu said...

Never having had my stash found by parents, I can't imagine how the boy feels, but wait with great anticipation to the 'rest of the story'.

Well told.

Christy said...

you need to give us part two!

SK said...

Oh for the love of....

Finish the story already, I HOOKED!

Omnibus Driver said...

Are you nuts??? Finish the damned story already!

Jay G said...

Dude, seriously, do NOT make this your "pink gorilla suit". Finish the damn story! :)

Dedicated_Dad said...

It's done. I hope it's as good in "print" as it is in my head...

Thanks again for the feedback, though if you guys are serious I'll have to spend a lot more time writing and less reading...


Maj said...

The note was perfect, perhaps pulled out pages from the mags taped all over the house will help him get the hint, send the girls to the zoo that day......or perhaps replace the mags with playgirl .......if nothing else it would be a hoot to hear his reaction. Good Luck!