Category: Noisetopia

Honesty

What is it about kids that makes them so honest? Is it because they haven’t learned the benefits or– more importantly– the consequences of lying? Imagine a world where everybody said whatever they thought, whenever they wanted, without regard to impact. Have any of you ever witnessed something or heard something that made you stop and take a moment for self-reflection? Yeah, me too. Except my moments of self-reflection are usually because of some brutal honesty on the part of my kids. Story time!

The family and I got all dressed up and made our customary bi-weekly trip to The Walmart for restocking of our depleted wares. We perused the aisles, filling most of our basket with things that weren’t on our shopping list. I mean, honestly, who can pass up a battery-powered handheld mister/fan combo when it’s on sale? We eventually ended up in the clearance aisle. The clearance aisle is kind of like doing a scavenger hunt in a hobo camp– you’re going to find something that you think is pretty cool but somebody else thinks is useless and/or disgusting. Orange Dreamsicle Oreos anyone?

Halfway through our trip down the aisle, my four-year-old spotted a stuffed Santa Claus toy stashed behind an As Seen On TV Shamwow. She dug the toy out from its hiding spot and studied it. Then she looked at me. She alternated between studying the toy and studying me, no hint on her face as to what was about to come out of her mouth. Then she blurted out, “Daddy, he’s got white in his hair just like you.” Whew! I thought she was getting ready to talk about the similarities between our bellies that resemble bowls of jellies. Still, though, the hair comment was uncalled for. Accurate, but uncalled for. If she were a grown man we’d be going fisticuffs. But she’s a four-year-old and couldn’t have seen anything wrong with the comparison she had just made.

Kids are the purest form of conversation, even when the chronological events of their stories are fabrications of their still-developing minds. Listening to a 45-minute story from my two and half year old is a riveting adventure that covers princesses, dinosaurs, ghosts, monsters, and then circles back around to dinosaurs. In their minds, these events are vivid and real. And they want you to experience the exciting wonderment the same way they did.

Imagine if we had the same types of rules for honesty and story-telling that our kids do.

Wife: Do you have any idea how loud you were snoring?

Husband: No. How loud?

Wife: Loud enough that I was trying to figure out how to make your impending death look like an accident.

Or

Wife: Honey do these pants make my butt look fat?

Husband: No, dear. Your butt makes your butt look fat.

Or

Husband [after sexy time]: Was it good for you?

Wife: Not even close.

Maybe honesty isn’t the best policy when it comes to grown-ups. How about we run with the story-time before bed idea? Not for the kids, but for us grown ups. 

Kids live in a world that I personally would love to live in myself. Everything is new. Genuine reactions that you and I take for granted every day are a source of constant discovery for children. And the reactions they witness are so genuine because they’ve usually said something equally genuine to cause them.

Hold onto that stuff as long as you can. There’s going to be a day in the not too distant future when your kids not only learn to lie, but they get pretty good at it. Believe it or not, you’re going to miss the brutal honesty of trying on clothes in front of a four-year old and her saying you look like the can of biscuits right before mommy pops it open. Or wheeling your kids through the store and having them announce, in succession and at a high volume, that they all need to poop.

The best part of an honest child? When they climb up into your lap, lay their head on your chest, and tell you they love you. That’s a truth you shouldn’t ever forget.

Thanks

To all of the readers who follow this blog, thank you! As some of you know, a Noisetopia article “Jailbreak” was published on parent.com and I couldn’t be more excited. Thanks to everybody for your support and encouragement. I look forward to bringing you many more awkward stories and completely fabricated wisdom. 

Here’s the link to the article. Feel free to check it out and share it with your friends. Thanks again!

https://www.parent.co/jailbreak-from-maximum-security-infant-birthing-center-sort-of/

Water Balloons

I damn near kicked the front door of our two-bedroom apartment in when we got home from the store. That son of a bitch was going down. I was sick of being second best. My roommate had been rubbing it in my face and I was done. That night was the night I would do it. That night I was going to break his record for largest water balloon launched from our apartment balcony.

My wife had gotten used to spending our nights like this. Hell, most of the time, she was the one that was reloading the water balloons into our launcher. Upon entering our apartment, I walked straight to the bathroom and ripped open the 50-pack of large, red birthday balloons. I had found, during my extensive research into the elasticity of different balloons in relation to their colors, that red seemed to tolerate not only the expansion from filling, but also the rapid acceleration experienced during launch. As I stretched the neck of the first balloon over the faucet, my beautiful bride sat down on the toilet next to me.

Our current situation was mostly my fault. I had taken an unreasonably long time to select the balloons at the store. Long enough that my wife developed the urge to go. During the ride back to our apartment she repeatedly expressed how badly she needed to pee which caused me to continuously tap the brakes and try to hit every bump I could. Because that’s what couples do.

So, I wasn’t surprised when she followed me into the bathroom and plopped down on the toilet next to me. Because I’m a gentleman, I averted my eyes and focused on the task at hand. This means I missed the part where she casually reached under the sink and retrieved a pregnancy test. She took said pregnancy test. Said pregnancy test….said she was pregnant. She got my attention when she said “uhhh….honey” as she held the pregnancy test in front of her face. I had just tied the neck of the biggest water balloon in the history of our apartment and was cradling it like a fat, squishy baby as I contorted my neck to read the small, blue lines on the pregnancy test, not yet comprehending what I was seeing.

That’s right, folks. I was holding a giant, red water balloon when I found out I was going to be a dad. I don’t think there’s a better example of just how unready someone could be for fatherhood.

Seashells

Kid logic. Not for the faint of heart. Whereas adults will go from cause to effect, kids will often go from cause to shiny object to barbie playhouse to thirteen questions about dinosaurs to effect. I was recently interrogated by a very skeptical four-year-old. We spent a week at a lake house last summer and while there, each of the girls collected seashells from the lakeside to take home with them. My four-year-old, Aimee, collected a full quart-size ziploc bag of what she deemed to be the best and most beautiful of the lakeside shells. A couple weeks after we came home, the bag of seashells ended up as a prop in what I can only assume was a Shakespearean production the girls performed in our driveway. I guess the props department that was working that particular day decided to quit, because all of the seashells were left strewn about, intermingled with sidewalk chalk pieces and barbie dolls.

Fast forward approximately one month. Like most souvenirs we get for the girls during our family vacations, the seashells have been all but forgotten. They stayed in the driveway, casually blending in with the worn cement and slowly becoming just another unnoticed object the girls had to walk over to get to the car. These beautiful seashells, the ones the girls HAD to have, the ones we specifically brought quart-size ziploc bags to the beach for, were forgotten.

Until one day when we told the girls to go play outside. They were outside for about 5 minutes until Aimee swat-style kicked the back door open and ran to where I was sitting in the living room. She approached, accusatory look on her face, clutching one of the forgotten seashells in her raised and outstretched hand. As she held the seashell awkwardly close to my face she asked, “Daddy. Why didn’t you tell me we lived at the beach?”

Now, I can normally tell when my kids (especially Aimee) are being sarcastic. I’ll give you a hint– it’s A LOT. That’s what I presumed was happening here. For the faintest of moments I wanted to believe that my Dad joke abilities were rubbing off on Aimee and she would carry on my legacy of awkward puns and terrible punch lines. It makes sense, right? She brings in a seashell and a serious look, asks why I never told her we live at the beach, then her face changes and she begins to laugh, and then we all laugh, and then we watch a Disney movie and live happily ever after.

Problem is, the serious look never went away. Where there was supposed to be a punch line instead was suspicion and confusion (on the part of all parties). She continued to stare at me, holding the seashell near my face, one eyebrow slightly raised, patiently waiting for me to explain myself. I did the only thing I could. I lied to a four-year-old. Don’t judge me. You don’t know how intimidating a four-year-old can be. So I offered the the first explanation I could think of. I told her that her mother and I wanted it to be a surprise and we were waiting for her birthday.

That’s right folks. Ain’t no shame in my game. Here’s the best part– apparently my explanation was sufficient. She now held the seashell closer to her and examined it, all the while thinking about what I just said. After a moment’s hesitation she looked up, smiled, and said “I’m so excited! I’m going to tell all my friends we live at the beach!”

And I’m not going to stop her. Because sometimes you’ve just got to pretend you’re living beach side.

Blood In, Blood Out

I’ve been sitting at this computer and trying to type up a new post for Noisetopia since 3 pm. In the three and a half hours that have elapsed, I’ve probably only been present in this seat for about 14 minutes. I begin to write, then have to press the pause button to go be a parent. My wife is doing what she can. She did just push a tiny human out of her lady parts a few days ago. So I can’t really fault her for not being able to administer swift justice or provide expert medical care for whatever event seems to be going on upstairs.

In the three and a half hours I’ve been sitting/not sitting here, I’ve come to the realization that what we have in this house is an inner city style gang neighborhood, albeit a much more condensed version. Bear with me on this one. It’s going to be a bumpy ride.

Just about everything I know about gangs comes from TV and/or my Facebook feed. So you can rest assured my gangland knowledge is both extensive and reliable. Everybody knows that if it’s on TV, it has to be true. I assume the same rule applies to Facebook.

Moving on. The first similarity I noticed was that, much like a Gangland neighborhood, the wife and I are pretty much immune to most screams and crashes. Our concern level has more than diminished over the course of raising four kids. Our first child had it pretty bad. If she let out a grunt or whimper from straining too hard trying to poop, the wife and I made an appointment just to make sure she didn’t have Necrotizing Butt-itis or something. If she fell down, we were the helicopter parents that would immediately scoop her up and kiss her boo boos and tell her she’s so awesome at falling. By our second child we had developed a better sense of what to expect. If she developed the ugly-face-farts we didn’t immediately suspect Ass Cancer-itis. When she fell down we still rushed over to help while only mildly giggling to ourselves. So far, our third and fourth child are getting the full benefit of our parenting experience. They pretty much need to be bleeding from multiple orifices and/or have bones on the outside of their body that aren’t normally there for us to get excited. The caveat to that statement is that my wife is a registered nurse and I’m a firefighter/EMT. It takes a little convincing for us to hand our child off to an ER doctor when we have most of what we need to handle minor scrapes and bumps here at the house. Our fourth child is in for a real treat. After she finishes her upcoming boot camp, we’ve got her enrolled in a free summer internship with a coal mining company. Kidding. Point is, after four kids you begin to develop instincts that enable you to gauge a child’s pain level based on tone, cadence, and volume of cry. As cruel as it sounds, sometimes the best course of action is to ignore the screams/crashes/cries and let your kid figure out their own shit. They might develop into a more independent adult because of it.

The second one is pretty easy to recognize if you’ve ever seen a gangster movie. It’s the concept of “don’t talk to The Man.” If the wife and I hear a scream or crash from upstairs that sounds especially concerning/interesting, then we rock/paper/scissors to see who is going to investigate. It’s almost a certainty that when the loser gets upstairs to check out what happened they will confront three stone-faced, tight-lipped little girls. “Crash? What Crash? Screams? Nobody screaming up here. Probably the dog. Or maybe check with the neighbors.” Tell me that doesn’t remind you of every episode of Cops you’ve ever seen. Didn’t see nothing. Didn’t hear nothing. Ain’t saying nothing.

Anybody ever heard “snitches get stitches?” It basically means that if you talk to the authorities, you’re going to get hurt or worse. Same rules apply at our house. Some time after our second child discovered the delightful Art of Combat with her older sister, we began to walk upstairs to investigate crashes/screams and heard faint whispers of “please, don’t tell Mom” or “I’m sorry I’m sorry please tell Dad you fell” or “I’ll cut you if you tell on me.” Okay, maybe not that last one. But it never fails that I’ll walk upstairs to investigate what I am certain was a death match involving medieval weaponry and/or armor only to find a tranquil tea party whose attendants all appear to be enjoying each others company. I’m not sure what kind of back-alley dealings are going on that’s keeping one party from ratting on the other but — whatever the agreement– it seems to work for all parties involved.

Uh oh. Sounds like someone just delivered a 300-style Spartan kick to somebody else’s chest upstairs. Time to gear up and head out. Probably won’t find anything when I get there. After all, nobody talks to the Fuzz. Not in this neighborhood.

Diaper Raccoon (Part 2)

Where did we leave off? Oh, right. I was set up in the entryway to the storage shed. I had positioned myself just above the depression that led underneath the shed. I suspected it had been created by a raccoon.

When you go fishing, you want to try to match your bait to what the local fish are accustomed to eating. I suspected the same was true for trying to lure small, furry animals. So, before taking position in what I considered to be the perfect vantage point, I retrieved some food scraps from the garbage. Don’t judge me. I was trying to catch a raccoon.

I also made sure to bring along an assortment of different-sized diapers. I’ve never personally measured a raccoon’s hiney parts. I suspected the average raccoon was a 4T-5T, but I was prepared with sizes ranging from newborn to 6x. Let me clarify for some of the parents out there that the assortment I brought included diapers (smaller sizes ) AND pull-ups (larger). You can never be too prepared.

I figured the best time to arrive at my stalking position was just before dark, as I’m well aware of the fact that raccoons are simply nocturnal trash pandas. My plan was to arrive before dark while the furry garbage bandits were still asleep and to catch them when they ventured out for their first meal. The opening to the shed is oriented just slightly enough towards the west so that the light from the setting sun turned my perch into something that looked like an inspirational-as-shit ninja movie. I stood in the shed, mentally preparing myself for what lie ahead, repeating my internal mantra to myself… “I’m about to try to put a diaper on a raccoon…. I’m about…to put a diaper…on a freaking raccoon…. LET’S DO THIS!!!!!”……….

All motivation gone. Freaking mosquitoes. I’ve lived in Texas long enough to know that if enough mosquitoes group together, they can and will carry you away and offer you up as a sacrifice to The Texas Mosquito King. At first, it was a risk I was willing to take. But, as the mosquitoes became more aggressive, I was certain I would have to abandon my quest and settle for the pureed baby fart reviews. Just as I was preparing to abandon my post, I heard it. The Rotten Refuse Robber sounded as if he (or she?) was following what I assumed was its customary route towards the entrance/exit of its Bandit Cave. This was it. The moment I had mildly prepared for. I readied my Raccoon Acquisition Device (a tinkerbell pillowcase we were going to throw away) and stood in the shed doorway directly over the hole underneath, my cat-like reflexes primed for action.

Time slowed. The first thing that came out of the hole was a cluster of whiskers, then a nose. I pounced. I can’t begin to express how fast my cat-like reflexes are. Dare I say, they are almost mongoose-like. Before even I realized it, I was diving head-first, Tinkerbell pillowcase open, falling towards the fast-approaching ground and my future diaper-wearing raccoon. Then, whilst mid-air, my brain began to catch up with the adrenaline-fueled dumbass that it was supposed to be controlling and started broadcasting alert messages on all frequencies. Raccoons are supposed to have black and gray faces right? Hmmm. The creature I was plummeting towards most definitely did not. Its face was more reminiscent of old-man ass– bald, ashy, angry. I thought I read somewhere that raccoons had furry tails as well. Interesting. This creature seemed to have no hair on its tail. Welp. Too late. I’m committed. Then, from the furthest recesses of my brain I heard “POSSUM!! THAT’S A POSSUM, DUMBASS!! POSSUMS ARE VICIOUS!! YOU ARE ABOUT TO BE VERY, VERY HURT!!”

The acquisition of my aforementioned cat/mongoose reflexes came with a diminished level of hand-eye coordination. I overshot what I now realized was a Possum by about 4 feet. At first I thought this was a lucky mistake and that the slick-tailed anger weasel would freak out and retreat to its dungeon. I had faceplanted in the grass just beyond the possum and, due to my graceful faceplanting abilities, ended up on my stomach in a semi-pushup position face to face with a pissed off mutant rodent.

Anger Weasel Supreme did not retreat. It let out a quick grunting noise and freaking charged. I let out a noise of my own. It was very high-pitched and resembled a scream.

Did you know that possums are fast? If there was a pissed-off rodent olympics, possums would gold-medal the shit out of sprinting. At this point my cat/mongoose reflexes had packed their shit and skipped town. I did the only thing I could do from the semi-pushup position I was in– I rolled away. Talk about awkward. Oh, what’s that you ask? My self-defense mechanism? I prefer the Tuck and Roll Technique. Gets em every time.

Everybody knows about Stop, Drop, and Roll. But, for some of you who may not remember, you’re also supposed cover your face with your hands while you’re stopping and dropping and rolling in order to protect your face and/or airway. I figured maybe this tactic would be effective against Enraged Violence Vermin so that’s what I did. I covered my face with my hands and rolled to safety. You know what would make this tactic even MORE effective? More high-pitched girly screams. I rolled across the yard towards the girls’ swingset, a small citrus tree finally stopping my forward progress. Realizing that I was out of rolling real estate, I sprung to my feet and took off in a full wind-sprint across my back yard. Direction and destination didn’t matter at that point, only survival. I soon realized that the white blur I had just passed was the back door to the house. Finally! Safe harbor!

Then I decided to do that thing that teenage girls in horror movies do (not screaming, I was still doing that). As I reached for the door knob, I looked back to see just how close my pursuer was. I looked at the ground directly behind me, fully expecting to see a rapidly approaching Vengeance Weasel but, to my surprise, it was gone. Still in horror movie mode, I looked up. I actually checked the roofline above me to see if Danger Rodent had magically grown wings and was perched above me, ready to make a meal out of its newfound girlish man-prey. I told you I was in survival mode. Fight or Flight means all logic goes out the window. And, let’s be honest, logic had left a while ago.

Finding no Perching Possum Gargoyles, I turned the knob and went inside. I walked into the living room where my wife was sitting in a recliner, reading something on her phone. She glanced up just long enough to survey the dirty, sweaty mess of a husband before her, let out a subdued giggle, then turned back to her phone. Without glancing up again, she informed me that I was bleeding. At some point during The Great Rolling Thunder Escape of 2017, I had either bumped or rolled into something sharp and cut my leg. I reached in my pocked and retrieved a Pampers 3T that had survived the trip. I ripped the sides open and applied it to my wound.

My review of Pamper’s Dora the Explorer Pull Up Size 3T is as follows–

Very effective for dressing possum-related wounds.

I let the possum keep the Tinkerbell pillowcase.

 

Diaper Raccoon

In an effort to promote the new website, I decided to do a product review. I’ve never done a product review before, so I googled exactly how to go about accomplishing this. Adventure time!

The first suggestion recommended by the Google was to review a product that you’re familiar with. I have four kids. The most obvious choice for a product to review would obviously be child-related. Bottles? No, that wouldn’t work. Some of our kids were breastfed. Baby food? Well, that would mean I would probably have to taste some of it myself. No thanks, I’m not in the mood for pureed squash. Have you ever smelled that stuff? Smells like baby farts and regret.

What to do what to do…..

Wait a minute. I have four kids. What do they all have in common? Diapers. I’ve spent a small fortune in diapers over the past eight years. I’m certain that I have single-handedly made Pampers stock rise at least a point and a half. That sure is a nice summer home Mr. H.G. Pampers (not sure if that’s the guy’s name. Sounded good). You’re welcome, Diaper King.

Diapers it is then. Next, the Google Machine says that I should put the product through its paces and record the results. What the what? A diaper is designed to do one thing– hold processed food and drink from tiny humans. I assure you, Mr. Google, that we are well aware of the design specifications of a diaper. But a review like that would be boring. So let’s REALLY challenge these diapers.

I began to form an idea. My wife could see the wheels turning in my head. Just as she began to speak her words of caution, it came to me. While she was saying something about “you’re gonna get hurt” and “my mom was right about you” one of those light bulb moments happened. What if we test the durability of the diaper under extreme conditions? My kids have two speeds– sleep and lightning bolt. The diapers we put them in have held up to most reasonable demands. But I think we can do better than that. The goal is to test a product to its extreme so that you know it’s prepared for “normal operating condition.” That’s when it came to me.

What if we tested it on a raccoon? I know that animal testing is usually frowned upon but come on. It makes sense. Think about all the ways a raccoon is just like a toddler. Angry? Check. Smelly? Check. Sometimes found covered in garbage? Motherflippin check that shit!

Okay so the first thing I needed to do was catch a raccoon. I wasn’t going to tell my wife the plan yet mainly due to the fact that I thought she would try to steal my idea but also because I wasn’t prepared to be reminded of how big of a dumbass I was.

We have a large storage shed in the back of our yard. There’s a depression under the entryway that, judging by my recently google-acquired knowledge of raccoon sizes, appears to have been dug by an adolescent raccoon. Or one of my daughters. But I’m an optimist so I’m going to say raccoon. The plan was to get in my best ninja outfit, set up in the entryway of the shed just above the whole, throw out some bait, and wait for my opportunity to strike. It was foolproof. FOOLPROOF I TELL YOU!

Except it wasn’t.

French Fries for Breakfast

Mornings in our house aren’t for sissies. A typical day in our house begins with a declaration of parent vs. child war, usually in the form of our 4 year old either falling or jumping from the top steps of her bunk bed, Wrestlemania-Style. The girls’ bunk beds are located in the room directly above my wife and I, so we get the full surround-sound intro to the Great Show. From the noises coming directly above us, my wife and I were pretty certain that the Mano-A-Mano Title Bout above us has devolved into what sounded like a Twelve-Man Royal Rumble. Apparently, the winner of the Royal Rumble was also required to perform approximately 283 wind sprints from one side of the second floor to the other before they were allowed to eat breakfast. It sounded like an angry octopus wearing combat boots doing cartwheels up and down the hallway.

The wife grabbed a broom handle we keep next to our bed for just such occasions and started banging on the ceiling to the let the performers upstairs know that the bout had been scored and it was time for their post-victory breakfast. The Second-Floor Combatants descended the stairs and met us in the living room, their hunger obvious on their faces. As is customary, my wife began taking requests for sustenance from the Cage Match Trio. Our eldest daughter, Kaylee, has an obsession with honey buns, so naturally that’s what she wanted for breakfast. An easy enough request due to our extensive knowledge of the eating habits of our children. Our middle cage-match contestant, Aimee, asked for cereal. No wait, pop tarts. No, nevermind, cereal. Ok, pop tarts. So we gave her a pop tart. Covered in cereal. Just to be safe. Then came little Lucy. Lucy had time to carefully consider her request while her older sisters put in their orders with Café Dé Mom and Dad. Yet, when it came time for her to speak up, she looked to us as if she wasn’t sure whether she should say what she was thinking. Being the sensitive, reassuring, supportive, good-looking parents that we are, we told her that she could have whatever she wanted.

French fries. She asked for french fries for breakfast. And I was….strangely okay with it. Now, for those of you who consider yourselves breakfast connoisseurs and/or child nutrition experts and might have an opinion on the nutritional value of french fries for breakfast– shut up. Sometimes you have to make french fries for breakfast because A) it’s an awesome request and B) I’m kind of upset that I never considered it.

We don’t believe in spoiling our kids. They are well aware of the work vs. reward concept that we try to follow and they’re honestly pretty well-behaved and hard working for their young age. As I’ve said in previous posts, we’re not only trying to raise good kids– we’re trying to make great adults. But sometimes you just need to let your kids be kids. I love the imagination it took to specifically ask for french fries for breakfast. And, while it probably isn’t surprising that a two-year-old would ask for french fries for breakfast, it reminds me of just how different kids view the world around them. Her mentality is “french fries are awesome and delicious. Why shouldn’t I be able to eat them whenever I want to?”

So, while my wife got the pop tarts, cereal, and honey buns I fired up the deep fryer and busted out those crinkle-cut pieces of potato awesomeness and made my baby some mothertrucking french fries for breakfast. I might have eaten some too.

What a world we live in where we have to be reminded by a toddler to take pleasure in the little things. That’s why, despite the constant barrage of noise and glitter, I’m thankful for the unwavering uniqueness that is our house– Noisetopia.

Jailbreak

The wife, the kid, and I just got done doing a nickel (that’s 5 days for you good, Christian folks) at the Memorial Hermann Maximum Security Infant Birthing Center. Let’s talk about that shit-show, shall we?

The wife and I just recently (about 9 months ago, give or take) decided that sanity was for sissies. We thought, if we can barely keep our shit together with three kids, why not up the ante and go for maximum chaos with another? So we did that thing that grown ups do (you know what I’m talking about. Don’t make me say it. Pervert) and got pregnant with our fourth child. I won’t bore you with the events leading up to our mandatory stay in Infant Max, but let’s just say that it was a wild 9 months. I will tell you this– the pitching speed of a pregnant woman in the third trimester increases exponentially when you factor in just how stupid the thing was her husband just said.

Fast forward to our recent internment at Infant County Correctional. It started out the same as the first three deliveries. My wife checked into Super Infant Max by herself after calling me at work to tell me the birthing process had begun. I raced to the house and grabbed our “go bag”. Those of you that are parents are familiar with the “go bag”. But for the non-parental readers, a “go bag” is a collection of essentials, usually prepacked in a suitcase, that you bring to the hospital when it’s “zero hour” to make your incarceration more bearable. Our personal “go bag” included items like our favorite toiletries, comfortable clothes, some snacks, fruit and sugar for making toilet hooch, and writing material to communicate with your associates on the outside. I’m kidding about those last items. Or am I? Plot twist.

I arrived at the hospital just after my wife had been assigned to a room and the nurse had administered the first round of drugs. I tried, yet again, to request some of the drugs for myself but no luck. Stingy bastards.

The majority of delivering a new offspring consists of waiting for your wife’s body to be ready to push the baby out. This is something we were familiar with given our three previous convictions for Aggravated Sexy Time Resulting in Pregnancy. Like I said, everything was “normal” up until it was time to push. That’s when we discovered the first personality trait of our newest minion. She was what doctors refer to as “stubborn as shit”. During the three previous deliveries, “pushing” was the shortest part of the entire process. It usually only took about 30 mins of hard work and determination on the part of my wife until our children exploded forth in all of their gory glory, greeting the world with the signature Noisetopia middle finger. However, thanks to our newest daughter’s flair for the dramatic, after two and a half hours of pushing she hadn’t moved at all. I’m not exaggerating when I say that either. She hadn’t moved. Period. No progress despite ample encouragement from all concerned parties. So the decision was made to perform a c-section.

For a “non-emergency” c-section, I’m almost certain the doctors performing it were going for a hospital record. From the time we wheeled my wife to the operating room to the time I brought our infant daughter back to our cell, approximately 2 minutes and 13 seconds had passed. Ok, NOW I’m exaggerating. But it was fast. Faster than I thought it would be. Mom and baby were back in the room and resting comfortably and we were all looking forward to a couple of days of getting to know each other and letting the baby review our parenting credentials. That was the plan, anyways.

Now for the shit-show.

Without going into much detail, I’ll tell you that because the baby had spent so much time in the birth canal, it had some negative effects on her blood work and general demeanor. Her prison tats would have to wait until she was stronger. And, because the baby had spent so much time in the birth canal, it had some negative effects on my wife’s blood work and general demeanor. She went ahead and got her prison tat. But, just in case you were worried, my blood work and general demeanor remained acceptable. So what was supposed to be a couple days of easy time turned into a rollercoaster of manual labor. My wife and baby played a game of tennis between their vital signs. One would be stable enough to be released on good behavior, while the other had time added to their sentence for shanking someone in the lunch line. What we predicted to be two or three days turned into five. We were finally released when my wife and baby decided that a truce between their two sides would lead to peace and prosperity in the community.

We got to come home this afternoon. I’m currently typing this in my office (read: small desk in our messy bedroom) and listening to the sounds of a new member being welcomed to the family in the next room. Despite all of the turmoil of the past few days, this moment is what we did it for. The girls alternating between eating their frozen pizza and arguing over who gets to hold the baby next. Just remember– it’s okay if the journey is rough, as long as the destination is everything you hoped it would be.

Let’s Start the Show

In the words of the late, great President Abe Lincoln– “We better hide that panda’s body”.

No, wait….that’s not the one I’m thinking of….

I think it’s– “Let’s take off our pants and do this dance”. 

Close enough. 

Welcome to Noisetopia. I am the self-proclaimed Supreme Overlord of this respectable shit-show I call “Being a Dad”. I’m here to tell you– you tired, you hungry, you huddled masses of exhausted parental units– it’s going to be okay. By no means am I an expert. I have had plenty of screw-ups during the brief time I have been the father of four beautiful little girls. There have been moments of doubt, moments of rage, and moments of complete and undeniable head-scratching confusion. But there have also been moments that (cue the touching orchestra number) have turned a grown man into a teary-eyed blubbering mess and moments that made me laugh until I thought I was going to pee in my manly pants. 

 This is the first of what I hope will be many awkward yet amusing posts on this blog. I realized recently that I’ve pretty much been doing a blog on my personal Facebook page. Then some friendly neighborhood Facebook acquaintances encouraged me to start a blog. I feel like the word “blog” is kind of boring and hipsterish. And while I would LOVE to keep referring to this as a “shit-show”, I know that some of the people that read this material would rather I not use that language (looking at you, Mom). So let’s call it Noisetopia. It’s our own magical kingdom where we can share in the joy and misery of raising children. And get a few laughs in at our kids’ expense along the way. 

Not all of the things that are posted here will be universally accepted by the masses. That’s understandable. My style of raising children isn’t for everyone. So if I write something that personally offends you, just know that in the deepest, most sincere part of my being…I don’t care. The material on this site is for entertainment purposes only. If you read something that you don’t like, please remember that it was written by a high-school educated, unpolished, exhausted father who considers it a resounding success if he can watch the children while Mommy works without something in his house being destroyed by fire. 

We’re going to start the festivities with some previous Facebook posts. Partly because I think they’re hilarious and partly because I’m too tired to write anything new. By the way, I’m currently typing this from the hospital room where my wife and newest daughter are being held under observation. Daughter is here because she was just born. Wife is here because the doctors are trying to figure out exactly how she shoots lasers out of her eyes. I told them it only happens when I piss her off. 

So strap yourselves in, folks. It’s going to be a fun ride. If you like what you see, please feel free to drop a comment or share to your Facebook page. I would say share us on Twitter but A) I don’t have a Twitter and B) When I looked up Noisetopia on Twitter, it looks like it belongs to some kind of music production company/emo hipster band. So there’s that….

Thanks for playing along. 

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