Humor

Oodles of Noodles

I have zero doubt that we are on a special radar at school. Red flagged. The Underdaddy children are subject to shenanigans and special trips to the principal’s office a couple of times each year. It’s fine. At least they are making a mark.

So far we have visited for:

Fear of Alien Abduction

Hearing Voices

Random Excessive Crying

Bullying and the Fallout

Defacing a Religious Text

Attention Deficit Disorder

Sassy Preteen Mouth

 

Our legend gets passed by word of mouth and each new teacher is given a briefing from the teacher before. “Bless your heart, I had that one last year…” or “She is a little eccentric but really sweet. Good luck.” I’m not certain of this but people are people and the teacher’s lounge is like any other water cooler gossip spot.

But never in the disarray that is our life did I think that we were giving off a vibe of abject poverty. My kids are malnourished but it is through their own personal choice. They only eat whatever things they can confirm that we don’t actually have. If I only have Mac and Cheese, they want Hot Dogs. If I have Hot Dogs they want Mac and Cheese. They exist on juice and imagined injustices.

And I will admit that some mornings we don’t all roll out the door looking polished and primed for the day. Maybe someone has a ring of Oreo Pop Tart around the mouth. Maybe someone’s hair escaped a brushing. Same for teeth occasionally. These are signs of being behind the schedule, not of being poor.

I wonder what stories my children are sharing at school?

Whatever the cause, fast forward or err… rewind to a few days ago and Prima sets her backpack on the counter. Inside the backpack are some generic cans of tomato and chicken noodle soups along with some instant noodles.

 

UD: What are these honey? (Holding up a can)

Prima: (Shrugs her shoulders) Someone put it in my locker.

UD: Why?

Prima walks off as if I wasn’t talking to her. Her sister walks in.

Jane: They do it randomly for kids who need it.

UD: Okay well, that isn’t random. That is targeted and how did it get in her locker?

Jane: The guidance counselor does it sometimes. I’ve seen her.

UD: Does she know whose locker she is leaving surprises in?

Jane: Yeah. Probably.

UD: Sooo… they think we are not feeding you guys?

Prima returns to the room.

Prima: I like these noodles they gave me.

UD: That’s not the point. And don’t walk off on me while I’m trying to talk with you. There are other kids who probably need these noodles.

Prima: Can I eat them?

UD: No! Maybe. I don’t know. (Turning to Supermom who just walked into the room) Can you return angel tree food? I don’t know the rules.

Prima: I’m eating the noodles.

Jane: I’m eating the Ravioli.

UD: I’ll eat the Ramen.

Supermom: No! This food is for the children.

UD: For our children apparently.

Supermom: No! Maybe… I don’t know. Put it in the pantry.

 

So now we have nonperishable food items for our underserved children to heat up and leave sitting in a bowl on the table while the go play their Nintendo Switch and wait for me to pour it out later into the garbage disposal.

If you have been on the receiving side of a community act of compassion then this post is for you. We are going to try and notch up our hygiene and nutrition plans since we are sending poverty vibes. I wouldn’t mind if it were true but I lament the fact that someone actually needs these things and they got sent home with a clan of children who have complete meltdowns over the wrong kind of juice or getting denied two types of meat in one meal. Example: Lady Bug requested a bologna sandwich with a side of hot dogs. She is a terrible vegan and, obviously, a princess accustomed to luxury in her processed meat selection.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Mothers Day Musing 2018

Sense of humor. A trait that varies between people.

Mine would fall under dark and sarcastic most of the time. I enjoy a good irony too.

In honor of Mother’s Day I thought I would share a story that my mother would enjoy.

My mother is a life-long dog owner. Her central fur baby at the moment is a squirrely-eyed Australian Blue Heeler Cattle something-or-other named Ellie. Ellie is a sweetheart and a smart herd dog. She can bring goats around and separate specific goats from the herd on command. In her leisure time Ellie loves chewing on stuffed animals. She doesn’t chew them as much as eviscerate them in a violent shaking rage but first she does something rather peculiar; she removes their eyes.

IMG_3343

Monkey no see monkey no do. 

Every. Single. One.

The fact that she starts with the eyes disturbs me for some reason. The idea that she doesn’t want them to see the horrors they are about to endure. Some real Jeepers Creepers kind of stuff.

Now as you can imagine, feeding a habit of stuffed animals is not cheap. If Ellie eats the eyes of one hapless victim each week then she will need fifty two sacrifices to satisfy her bloodlust. Buying brand new stuffed animals would be a big commitment. Luckily, there is a place that supplies this habit at a reduced rate. Goodwill.

That is where the real hilarious part starts for me.

I remember cleaning out things from our garage a few years ago. We had a large box full of stuffed animals that we needed to send away. The sentimental attachment was too strong to allow us to just throw them away. We felt that our children had enjoyed these toys and loved them and that maybe they still held the power of love for some other, less fortunate children. So… we donated them to Goodwill.

I think of Toy Story and the fear and trepidation that toys experience moving from one home to another. Imagine if the Velveteen Rabbit had been donated to Goodwill only to be brought home to a cute cuddly dog who promptly ripped out his eyes and scattered his stuffing all around the living room.

IMG_3345

Love is blind.

It made me giggle. That’s where my humor lives.

And you know who gave me that?

My mom. Happy Mother’s Day!!!

To all the moms out there. This one is for you. You’re welcome. Thanks for putting up with the rest of us.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Censored

Lady Bug dropped her forked. It hit the edge of the couch and clattered onto the floor. Her frustration rolled out of her four-year-old mouth in a crystal clear “DAMMIT”.

I looked out of the kitchen where I was preparing a beverage, eyebrow raised, “Excuse me young lady?”

She looked around like she was confused by my question. Like I was obviously deaf for not hearing her the first time. “I said dammit.”

Wow. I tried to play the stern parent who doesn’t deal with nonsense. “I know I did not hear you say that.”

“Yes.” She looked directly at me and reiterated,  “I. Said. D-a-m-m-i-t.”

She had doubled down. I shifted to negotiation phase. “You don’t need to use that word.”

She cocked an eyebrow. “Why not?” What else should be used in a moment of frustration?

She was wielding the logic of a child. It was simple but effective. A real world litmus test for a concept without a previous experience to taint judgement. I thought to myself, dammit, and then I rolled out the catch-all fallback position, “It is an adult word and you don’t need to use it.”

She fired back immediately. “That is stupid.”

Double dammit. She was right. It was stupid. We spend our lives pretending we are better than we really are. An endless cycle where we try to convince each successive generation to be better than we know ourselves to be. I was impressed by her wisdom, her resolve. She might be the first person in our family to be free of society and our expectations. How could I respond? “It is stupid but that is life so don’t say it, okay?” I replied with a slight squint. Bracing for the rebuttal.

I played my last card. This was it. The bluff. The precipice. If she smelled blood in the water I might lose all the imaginary leverage that I held over her. I braced for her answer and walked into the living room to meet my fate. My terror of a teenager could emerge from her cocoon a full nine years before nature intended.

The world hung in the balance and she answered, “okay…”.

I breathed a sigh of relief and noticed she was staring at the cup of juice in my hand. Saved by a technicality. She is unable to pour juice from the massive Hawaiian Punch jug that I buy in bulk. She is at least smart enough to know that she needs my brute strength to survive.

I am the parenting version of a useful idiot. They let me believe I have some sort of power in exchange for my services. We both know that once they can drive a car or pour their own juice, I’m done for.

I was almost done for after a separate scenario.

Earlier tonight the girls were playing Mario Cart and talking about rhyming words. One said the word “Tickle.” Seamlessly, another said, “Pickle.” A giggling God tied their thoughts together and they erupted into a chant of “Tickle my Pickle. Tickle my pickle.” I told them to stop with the rhyme. They asked “why?”

“Because I said so”, I said as seriously as I could while rushing into the next room to wipe the smile off my face. It took me a full five minutes to gather myself and be able to face them again. It was hilarious.

If you struggle with censorship, this post is for you. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Brains and Bravery

The human brain is a magical thing. The way it filters a constant stream of input from our senses helps us thrive at the top of our food chain. Apex predators who can see and understand the world.

Think about the amount of information processed from your eyes alone. Megapixels of colors and shapes and shades. Your brain, a neural network supercomputer, looks at each image frame-by-frame and decides if objects are moving. Where are they moving? How fast? If you move along a fence fast enough your brain will piece together images through the gaps and let you see what is on the other side. Your brain has a buffer and temporary storage. That is about the coolest thing ever.

However…

Sometimes the brain makes assumptions and jumps to conclusions. Loud noises. Bright flashes. Features hidden in the shadows that look like faces. Our brains are hardwired to jump to emergency mode. Fight or flight.

Or freeze in pants shitting terror.

Mine does that last one sometimes. On special occasions I make weird sounds and swear.

Last night was a special occasion. I was walking into the darkened living room. On a quest to get a drink of water from the kitchen. On my right are the stairs that ascend into the bonus room over the garage. The light in the stairwell had been left on and was casting a glow down the stairs and into the living room. In that shadow was an outline. A very human outline that my supercomputer brain immediately identified and flagged as a curiosity. I turned my head to find the source of the shadow and examine it myself. Who was making this shadow? Why were they in my house? Should I confront them or go find a weapon first?

In a split-second I had my answers. The neurons fired and told me a series of instructions.

  • Holy mother of Jesus. That is a fucking demon.
  • Oh shit. There are two of them.
  • You are going to die.
  • Shut down your internal organs and stop breathing.
  • Try to scream and warn the others. Oh wait. You just shut down your internal organs which includes your diaphragm and lungs. Oh well. Utter something unintelligent like “Meerr fuck nubly.”  They don’t stand a chance against demons anyway.
  • Wait… Those demons look familiar. Like American Girl dolls.
  • American Girls dolls have metal stands that hold them upright so they can be posed and more interactive. This helps to foster reality and make the play experience more vivid and real.
  • Those are just dolls. Take a deep breath.
  • Sorry about your pants. Restart all normal organ function.
  • Sit down for a second you silly chicken-shit. Some protector of the family you are… Disgraceful. What would you have done if that was a demon? You are useless.
CHILDSPLAY

Here is what I actually saw.

CHILDSPLAY_3

This is what my brain told me I saw.

It serves me right.

One of my joys in life is hiding at odd times and scaring the absolute Bea-je-zuz out of my children. I even scared the dog the other night and she screamed like a human child. It was awesome. I didn’t know dogs could scream like that. Supermom thought I stepped on her and my children thought the closet monster was eating her. It was fantastic.

So turn-about is fair play. If you have ever had a less-than-manly moment, this post is for you. It happens. Kids do some creepy stuff. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Drugs Are Bad

We have gotten addicted to the Live-PD TV show. If you haven’t seen it, it is a mix between Orwell’s 1984 and Ray Bradbury’s idea of the future from Fahrenheit 451. There are live camera crews assigned to five or six police departments across the nation and they jump around between traffic stops and other police calls. Some things are mundane and sometimes things are crazy. Anything goes.

Tonight, I witnessed something that I felt needed to be shared. It is proof positive that drugs are hazardous.

The officers stopped a car that was reported to have a wanted man. He was arrested. There was a passenger in the vehicle and things around the whole situation were sketchy so they searched the vehicle. In the ashtray they found…

LivePD_Teeth

A human tooth. Where could that have come from? The trunk maybe?

LivePD_Trunk

Hmmm. What is that?

Nope. Nothing in here but a prosthetic leg and a football. A a Mag-Lite. That combo is suspicious but it still doesn’t explain the tooth. Maybe the passenger knows some information that may be helpful…

LivePD_Man

Say stranger, we have reports of a feral tooth. Have you seen anything?

Mystery solved.

If you find yourself in the passenger seat of a sedan, placing your teeth in an ashtray (or any container) and you are over the age of twelve, take a pause and examine your life situation. If your driver is wearing a hemp pullover and carrying crack in the front pocket, take a pause and examine your life situation. Show your children this side of drugs. Pop culture shows plenty of the other side.

If you find yourself watching live action police work, this post is for you. You’re welcome. Also, I didn’t explain the cover photo. Prima drew that pretty picture while waiting on pancakes at Cracker Barrel. Don’t ask because I have no idea. Apparently Baby Brenda will eat your soul but also likes warm hugs.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.