Thursday, April 12, 2007

Listerine Recall

The company that makes Listering has announced a voluntary nationwide consumer recall of all lots of the GLACIER MINT™ and BUBBLE BLAST™ flavors of LISTERINE® AGENT COOL BLUE™ Plaque-Detecting Rinse after the Company determined that the preservative system is not adequate against certain microorganisms.

I believe that is what's known as irony. Kills germs that cause bad breath, but not the ones that cause, oh, death.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Planning on having kid?

I have a coworker who's expecting her first baby. It got me to thinking. As a father of two children, I consider myself a seasoned expert on the subject of child-rearing. I mean, so far I've done everything right, and documented all of my successes so that when the Father Of The Year award comes up for grabs again, I'm a shoe-in.

But that's just my opinion. I might be wrong. But I doubt it.

I have some suggestions for all those new parents-to-be out there. Some might call this unsolicited advice. I think of it more as a warning to all the new players on the team. And it certainly is a team. If we don't band together, those meddling kids will take over. Ever seen the Matrix? Yeah, it's like that but with more goo. So here's how you can best ready yourself for the onslaught:

1. Start buying twice as much food as you do now. When you get home, throw half of it away. That's exactly what will happen when your kid starts eating real food. You'll spend countless hours slaving over dinner and preparing a nutritious meal, and your kid will eat one carrot and half of your slice of garlic bread because three hours ago she had conned her grandma into an extra lollipop. But she'll have plenty of room for ice cream later.

2. Pay a neighborhood kid to call your house every 47 minutes starting at 7pm until around 6:30am. That will get you used to a normal sleep pattern once you have kids. For a more realistic effect, let the neighborhood kid know what TV shows you are watching so he can be sure to call you right when all the best scenes come on.

3. Practice the Dish Color relay. Take a blue dish from the cabinet and place it on the dinner table. Walk back into the kitchen. Now go and retrieve the dish, put it away, and replace it with a red one. Now do the same with two drinking cups. Then, bring out a fork and switch it with a spoon. You see, this is what will happen when your child forms an opinion. Bring him a bowl of red grapes in a green bowl on the third Tuesday of the month, and he's going to want them in the red bowl. Give her milk in the pink sippy, and she's going to want the Dora cup with the built-in straw. And don't even think about asking which bowl she wants before you select one; she will only change her mind the moment you bring it. You see, this is how they break you down, forcing you into submission.

4. When you talk to your spouse, only say the third and fifth word of every sentence. And repeat the fifth word twice. That's how it will be once you have a kid that knows how to talk. Or, more accurately, how to interrupt.

5. Accept the fact that you and your fertile loins will be personally responsible for global warming. Between the twelve thousand pounds of diapers your little varmint will go through, the massive collection of non-biodegradable plastic Disney Princess toys that will amass in the corner of the basement giving off toxic fumes, and the truckloads of empty cereal, Eggo waffle, and Easy Mac boxes you will dispose of each week, there's no hope for this planet and it's all because you wanted someone to carry on the family name. Ironic, ain't it.

6. Ask each of your friends to plan on getting together no more than once a month. When the day comes to get together, one of you should cancel due to illness. It doesn't matter if anyone's actually sick, but it will get you used to the fact that you will never be able to make advance plans with anyone because when the time comes someone's kid will have a fever of 102 and have spent the previous night throwing up on the duvet.

7. Kiss the following things goodbye: friends, spare time, exercise routines, sleep, disposable income, nice furniture, savings, cars that don't smell like spoiled milk, ironed clothing, polished kitchen floors, CD collections, recollections of important events in history, and extra space. All those items will be distant forgotten memories once he takes over.

8. Rent a classic horror movie. When the "girl screaming at the top of her lungs" scene come on, turn the volume up past 11. This will enable you to get started on the inevitable hearing loss that comes as a result having children. There is no sound more piercing on this earth than two children playing loudly in a bathtub while you are less than a foot from them.

9. Take a container of cottage cheese, and store it under the kitchen sink for a month. Now open it. Mmmm, notice that pungent aroma? That's kid barf. Get used to it.

10. No no, this one's for you to find out yourself.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Watts makes good

A while back I told the story about my defective sink rim. Well, after sending the manufacturer the $75 bill for the plumbing job and a digital photo of the defective sink rim, they made god by dropping a check for $75 in the mail to me. Great to see a company stand by their product.

Friday, April 06, 2007

No dating til you're thirty!

Okay, this story needs a little bit of setup first. If you're a regular reader you know that my 7-year-old daughter and I are in the Adventure Princess program. And you may recall me mentioning "Uncle Harry", the Ombudsman of the Adventure Princess program and official guardian of the Princesses at all campouts. Uncle Harry has two mottos: Girls rule, Boys Drool and No dating 'til you're thirty. Uncle Harry announced he is retiring this year.

So on to the story.

The family went to see Meet The Robinsons today. Loved it, by the way. By coincidence, one of Natalie's schoolmates and his mom was sitting in front of us at the theater. His name is Aiden. And boy, is he dreamy. I mean, this kid is gorgeous. And Natalie knows it. Every time his name comes up, she blushes. Her cheeks become the color of her bright red hair. So of course, we foster the blushing by referring to him as "Ayyyydennnnn...he's keeeeyuuute...." which makes her blush even more and will quite likely give her a such a complex that she will grow up to hate her parents and get tattoos all over her body to spite us.

On the way out of the theater, Natalie stopped and asked me something.

"Dad, you know how Uncle Harry is retiring?" she asked.


"Well, does that mean that maybe some of his rules won't apply anymore?"

"What rules are you talking about?"

"You know, the one about not dating until you're thirty."

"Um, yeah? Why you asking? You looking to go on a date with Aayyyydennn? He's keeeyuuuute...."

"Pssh..I mean....DADDDDD!!!!!!"

So there it is. The first sign that Natalie realizes she's a girl, he's a boy, and I need to be learning how to use a shotgun.