Monday, October 31, 2011

Things I've learned as a parent

To the question "have you done homework / chores / whatever I asked you to do," the answer "yes" is best regarded as a "no."

The more emphatic the "yes," the more likely it is to be "no."

The loudest shout from one room to the next will go unheard, but the muffled clink of a cookie jar lid can be heard clearly through three closed doors.

The words "just try it, you might like it" have never had any credibility. They didn't fool you, why would they fool your kids?

Today's "must have" absolute number one all time favourite cereal / snack / soft drink will languish, unconsumed, in the back of the cupboard for the next year.

This sometimes manifests itself as a stealth attack, wherein the item will be avidly consumed week after week right up to the point where you decide to buy it in bulk.

The best way to conceal an item is to leave it lying in the middle of the floor, preferably in a high-traffic area such as the top of the stairs, masquerading as something in need of being picked up and put away. This will render it entirely invisible.

Whenever you check the kitchen clock, leaving yourself just enough time to ferry child to music lesson / scouts / appointment with parole officer, the thirty seconds it takes to grab car keys and put on shoes will have mysteriously stretched to at least five minutes by the time you reach the car. I think Einstein's to blame. Somehow.


  1. Indeed Ian, when in doubt, blame it on Einstein. Or maybe what you thought was thirty seconds and actually was five minutes, does indeed, prove that time flies when you're having 'fun'.
    And yes, time does depend on which side of the bathroom door you're on....
    Hope you had a Happy Halloween, eh :)

  2. Lol - you know, the 'Try it, you might like it' thing always worked on me. I got pissed when my cousins refused to east something they never tried and said they didn't like it. :)

    And the 30 seconds stretch for me too - because I find a lot of other tiny things to do before walking out the door. :p

  3. Not sure how old your kids are, but I can assure you that when you have three teenagers in the house, all of this increases exponentially. Getting a 19 year old girl out the door in 5 minutes would be a welcome surprise!

    Great post!


  4. What a wonderful concept...I'm going to try it. If I don't want something to be touched I should just leave it in plain site in a corner somewhere. Of course, my dogs might get into it. :)

  5. I don't have kids, but I can say your advice on concealment in plain sight works on animals! Whatever I don't want my cats to steal, I just leave out.

  6. HA! This is too funny. There's some kind of weird time suck thing when I try to get myself out the door, too.

  7. Gary, that sounds like an advanced form of Non-Einsteinian relativity :)

    Steph, I've conducted controlled experiments, adjusting for all those factors, and the time dilation paradox is real I tell you!

    Andrew, not quite teenagers yet. Exponential time dilation does not sounds like fun.

    Laila, remember the secret ingredient - make sure it looks like it doesn't belong there and needs to be moved. That is the key to invisibility. Not sure if it works on dogs though.

    Jennifer, your cats must have near-human (or at least childlike) intelligence then. That trick most definitely doesn't work with mine.

    Lindey, I'm relieved to hear I'm not the only one.

  8. delightful conclusions, you must be a lovely dad :). I don't have kids yet but I'll keep in mind some of your advice :)

  9. Having you been lurking hidden in my house? Haha!

    Hey, what about this one: Would you please come down and do the dishwasher / your homework / take the trash out/ whatever? To which the answer is OKAY. And 20 minutes later, it's still OKAY. And 2 hours later, you got it: nauseum...til it's time for bed.

  10. Thanks, unikorna, and I'm sure you'll be able to reciprocate with some hard-earned wisdom of your own.

  11. Nancy, that rings a bell too. And have you noticed how the "Okay" get more and more impatient, as if to say, "You already reminded me, like, a million times," ... and it still doesn't get done?

  12. >>wherein the item will be avidly consumed week after week right up to the point where you decide to buy it in bulk.

    No kidding! I've fallen victim to this more times than I want to admit. Even worse is when they come out of "I don't want it" hiatus and demand to know where it is after you've given it away because it sat there in plain sight, uneaten for months.

  13. Oh yes, Jean, I forgot about that little twist too!

  14. And all these things can be totally explained by quantum mechanics!


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