Will Trade Time with Kids for Comedy Material

Posted on November 20, 2012


My librarian wife went out of town for work last weekend, leaving me alone with the kids and providing more evidence of how libraries tear families part. I told the kids if I was going to spend twice as much time with them in their mother’s absence, they would have to work harder to provide me writing material.

My 8-year-old son The Fonz and I were talking about my brothers and sisters and I asked him:

Me: Can you name your aunts and uncles?

Fonz: Um…no.

Me: Really? You can’t name a single one.

Fonz: Oh…I thought you meant name them.

Me: What?

Fonz: I thought you meant name my aunts and uncles.

Me: You mean you thought I was asking you to give them a new name like naming a baby?

Fonz: (Blank look)

Me: Why would I ask you to give your aunts and uncles names?

Fonz: I don’t know.

I’m not sure why he would assume I meant that kind of naming, but I can understand why that would be a lot of pressure for an 8-year-old.

On Sunday my 11-year-old Optimist Prime had just completed an impressive QB performance for his football team and was excited his girlfriend had come to see his game. I told him:

Me: I know you’re excited that she came to see you, but I noticed a lot of other girls seemed pretty impressed, too.

OP: Dad, it doesn’t matter because I’m a one-man girl.

He insisted the words had come out a little differently than he intended. His brother asked him:

Fonz: If you kiss your girlfriend would you tell me?

OP: Um…

Me: If OP told you, would you tell a bunch of people?

Fonz: Probably 40 people.

I spared OP learning the lesson that you should never tell The Fonz a secret.

Earlier in the week OP had a parent teacher conference. His art teacher outlined some goals for him and asked him how he thought he could do better. He listed some areas for improvement. After he finished she asked:

Teacher: Is there anything I can do better?

OP: How do you feel about wearing a poncho?

Teacher: I have a green one maybe we can talk about later.

Otherwise he seems to be doing well in school.

Mrs. Greatsby’s parents asked her to fill out a Christmas shopping list for our boys. After she made a list of likes and interests and added a few possibilities to a present wish list, The Fonz added:

‘Cigarettes, any variety’

I’m sure this was a joke, especially because he remembers we once gave OP cigarettes in his stocking to teach him an important lesson about peer pressure: You shouldn’t smoke just because your friends are doing it; even if your friend is Santa Claus.

Our family occasionally watches the new version of Doctor Who together. One of the scariest episodes is called ‘Blink’, and we told the kids they weren’t old enough to watch it.  One of The Fonz’s friends told him about it, and he insisted he was old enough to watch it. I told him it was too scary for three months and he kept insisting he wouldn’t be scared. His friend told him the whole plot and he was certain it wouldn’t bother him.

Fonz: I won’t get scared.

Me: It’s too scary.

Fonz: I know won’t get scared.

Me: You’re going to get scared.

Fonz: I promise I won’t get scared.

After three months of him asking I finally gave in and let him watch it. After 30 seconds he pulled a blanket up to his eyes and whispered:

Fonz: I thought it was going to be a lot less scary.

Part of me is glad my kids are funny. The other part of me is exhausted. With every member of the family performing, there’s nobody left in the audience.


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Posted in: Family