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Friday, October 25, 2013


So my friend H is having a baby. Hers is one of the few palindromic names longer than 5 letters, so you could probably figure it out even if you are dyslexic. Or is it lesdyxic?

She came to our dinner party, and thankfully announced it before we had time to wonder amongst ourselves, “Has she gained weight or what?” After dinner and dessert, I wondered to myself, “Has that baby gained weight or what?”

Having a baby is one of those life-changing decisions that people weigh carefully and with gravity and diligence. Usually it just shows up inside your body without so much as a simple phone call.

My wife and I never had children. This is a subject we have always agreed upon. I think at a formative age (we were dating even at a formative age) we probably ran across someone who had a baby, maybe they asked us to hold it, maybe it pooped in its pants, and maybe we both looked at each other and went, "Gross." That is how life decisions are made.

Once I asked my friend Jenn if she ever had the urge to have a baby and she said, "People living inside of other people? That is creepy." Which seemed weirder than anything I could say so I didn't say anything.

H knows the sex of the baby, which is helpful for planning. I can shop ahead for the baby gift- either I get it a remote control, or tiny Manolos, depending. Usually you have to wait for the birth announcement, where they give the height and weight of the baby. I ask for the circumference too. If it’s a girl it’s the last time you can politely find out her weight.

People who have kids sometimes tell me: You don't know what you're missing out on. Who will mow your lawn? That question still eats at me.

People who have kids seem to LOVE them for some reason. Oh my god it's so REWARDING! What? What exactly are the rewards? My credit card has rewards, and those are rewarding. I read somewhere that over the life of the kid until it's 18, it costs you around $100,000 not including college, and depending on how many cars it wrecks and what kind.

I know my wife and I would never have agreed on how to discipline the child. She is a total softie even with the pets. For instance, she lets the dog roam on the leash all over the place anywhere it wants during a walk. I keep the dog at heel on a short leash. It would be the same thing with a child. I don't know why we would keep a child on a leash, but I can picture it. I believe in corporal punishment, as in Corporal Agarn, where if you misbehave he hits you over the head with his hat. My wife would probably favor a "time out." I would never put my kid in a "time out" unless we had to go over the defense. People tend to make rash and emotional decisions regarding punishment. Experts say that you should count to 10, then slap your kid silly.

Let’s discuss the issue of child safety. You should have the attitude that everything in your house could be a potential danger to your newborn. You need to move out of that hellhole IMMEDIATELY. Short of that, you have to refit everything in your house because your infant could try to put it in its mouth. I was at the mall recently and saw an infant trying to put a small object into its mouth. I sprang into action and rushed over to save the child and alert the mom. It turned out she was breastfeeding the child, but I felt like a hero nonetheless.

The worst part of all would be cutting out about 85% of my behavior, because it would set a bad example. Even a lot of the things I do in my sleep, apparently. When you were a kid, any activity that was fun was also forbidden, so you used to have to hide it from your parents. Now that you are a parent, the same fun things are not only forbidden, but also irresponsible, so you have to hide them from your kids.

My mother once asked me hopefully, "You think you'll have kids?" I said, "Maybe one day, that's about all I could stand.... Two days at the most...."

Incidentally,several surveys report that the most baby birthdays in the U.S. fall on October 5th. Which makes sense because New Year’s Eve falls approximately nine months prior, when people are not only drunk, but at their most attractive, wearing an expensive ball gown, a cardboard hat, and making loud noises, hopefully with a noisemaker. In the rest of the world, the most babies are born in August, roughly nine months after Halloween, when you could brag that you had sex with an M & M, a taco or some dude in a dress.