Yesterday I posted about things that I can no longer do now that I’m a parent. For those of you without children, my intent was not the complete elimination of our species by scaring you into not procreating but rather to give a warning….no….a helpful insight to the changes that you will experience. Trust me, you can survive without showers daily or missing a couple of episodes of The Walking Dead. Sure, it’s a hollow existence….(KIDDING!). Anyway, I thought I’d make the argument slightly more even and encourage some of you to go make some babies. Granted if you think about me when your reading this you’ll already be in the mood.
Anyway, my massive ego aside, there are a lot of cool stuff that having kids allows you to do. Have you been to a Chuck E Cheese lately??? They’re awesome and if you have half-a-brain and some coordination you can be a ticket-collecting God to your child. Sure you will only get 5 airheads and one of those helicopter sticks for your $12 of tokens but the way you become some kind of ticket-collecting superhero in your child’s eyes is incredible. If you think about it, you go to work to pay for clothing, food and shelter for that kid and they couldn’t care less but if you earn them enough tickets to get one of those cheap suction snap-pop-up things at the Pop-a-shot they will never forget it. Just skip the pizza and you’ll survive long enough to cherish that love and devotion.
Next on the cool things that you can do when you have kids: Toy Stores. After a few visits to the Toys R Us I’ve learned that if you don’t walk in with a child or come in with a t-shirt stating that you are a Hot Wheels collector, they will call the police on suspicion of being a child diddler. It’s just the way the world is now. No way around it. Anyway, enough of the scary present we live in. Kids LOVE toy stores. Toys R Us is like Willy Wonka’s Factory to them without the creepy Oompa Loompa’s singing about your failures as parents.
The best part about toy stores with a child though is the fact that they have no concept of what things cost and occasionally it will work out in your favor. A few months ago I took my little girl to the toy store and told her that I would buy her 1 item no matter what the cost. I was ready for anything: talking/pooping dollies, giant tree house set-ups, video game systems (gently pushed her towards/secretly hoped she’d pick the PS3). Eventually she picked up a 4 pack of bubbles. Not even good bubbles that blow themselves or anything. Just plain ol’, wand gets stuck in the bottle so you cut your fingers trying to chopstick them out, bubbles. Total for the trip:$2.55. Her happiness: through the roof! I was a king in her eyes. Warning: I don’t think this works if you watch television on a regular basis with your child and they have an opportunity to watch commercials. You may go bankrupt.
Finally, no one without kids goes to parks (other than homeless people). Parks are like free carnivals for your kid and usually safer than most carnivals at the same time.
My girl is super outgoing and wants to be “best friends” with everyone she meets so this is the opportunity for her to make all kinds of new friends and for me to sit on a bench and completely ignore other adults. My assumption is that, in my neighborhood, a third of all parents haven’t had their kid by natural means but rather stole them so I don’t want to associate with them. Anyway, she loves it. She runs around, makes some friends, slides down the slide a few thousand times, and then we go home and she falls asleep on the couch for about 3 hours. It’s win-win!
I guess what I’m saying is that it’s not all bad. In fact, there’s no bad at all. It’s just different. I’m a big stupid kid at heart anyway so this is right up my alley. I love the opportunity to be silly and try new voices out to make her giggle (tried a pirate voice that turned into a Scotsman by the end of her bedtime story the other night). It’s just about finding what makes your inner child happy and usually that’s the same stuff that his/her outer child enjoys too. Call it time-traveling by proxy (Hey, that’s the name of the…….oh, you sly dog, Josh).