Observations of a New Dad

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wisecracks about "Momma two-snaps" are far from the only humorous side-effects of having a baby daughter, and I am happy to see that my wife has been collecting some of my remarks. Yes, you could say, looking at the list, that the scatology has hit the fan. All I can say about that -- and I can't resist putting it this way -- is that, if you're not a parent, no explanation is possible, but that if you are, none is necessary. Without further ado, I present the list.

  • During a particularly ... eventful ... feeding: "She's putting on her own rendition of Blazing Saddles".
  • "Even Mr. Immaculate can't be clean around a baby."
  • After a succession of rather ... challenging ... diaper changes, I developed a shorthand term for what she seemed to be saving just for me: "the father lode".
  • The girl looks astoundingly like I did in my baby pictures, except that she has her mother's extremely fair skin and her eyebrows, so I call her "Mini-Me", or sometimes "female Mini-Me".
  • "Our lives revolve around a three-week-old alimentary tract."
  • "She's a future cheerleader since she's rooting all the time."
  • "She's a future basketball player since she's dribbling all the time."
  • Yes. Another changing-table gem: "What are you trying to do? Make a new continent?"
  • The baby seems to have inherited her mother's narrow nasal passages, so her breathing, especially early on, was very noisy. (This was very cute, so I recorded it. Now, she makes the noises mainly when she's happy or very interested in something.) I'd often refer to the "chicken noises" she'd make, and eventually came up with a motto for her, based on a very old cultural reference: "Keep on clucking."
  • Upon one of us getting her to sleep after some difficulty: "Children achieve divinity in sleep."
  • After a pre-handoff warning from the wife that "this might be a drooling proposition": "For babies, life is a drooling proposition."
And since I'm journaling Daddy Moments today, I'll make note of a few other things:
  • After yesterday morning's stroll, I returned, with our sleeping baby, to the dull roar of pressure washing at our apartment complex. As I'd hoped, the noise masked many of the usual sounds that would startle her awake on the way back in, like the creaking of the garage door as it opened. Without any "pre-startling", the elevator bell failed to wake her, and I got all the way up to the apartment with the baby still asleep! I parked the stroller, took off my jacket and hat, and ... immediately sneezed, completely waking her up.
  • The baby likes to people-watch, so for the late afternoon stroll, I took her to a large square nearby that is often crowded with tourists. Some foreign visitors spotted her and asked to hold her and take pictures with her. She's a pretty baby, and even has birthmarks (that will fade over time) that make it look like she's wearing eye shadow. 
  • We've had a few really good laugh sessions lately. Once, it got to where it seemed like we were laughing at each other laughing. What gets me the most laughs at this point? Questions in general (especially if I shake my head side-to-side when asking them), certain facial expressions, and the name, "Tufts". (My wife thinks she may find s-sounds funny, generally.)
  • And, finally, here's an assortment of nicknames I've applied to her at various times and in various situations: "sport" (What I call her, for humorous effect, when she first wakes up and is still disoriented.), "formula breath", "baby Buddha", and "honey". Honey isn't really a nickname, but it's a term of endearment I never used until she came along, and I use it only for her.
People keep telling me that babies grow up fast, and that I should work to remember things like this. I am already beginning to appreciate this advice: I was momentarily saddened when I realized that I'd forgotten how I first made her laugh.

-- CAV


Jenn Casey said...

. . . if you're not a parent, no explanation is possible, but that if you are, none is necessary.

That made me laugh. We also had (have) an extensive list of metaphors for all of the diaper-related activity. It's something fun to do while having to deal with something not-so-fun.

My daughter takes after my husband in looks and personality. He refers to her as "Mini-She-Me."

I had a similar sleeping baby experience with my oldest once. Got him through a noise obstacle course successfully, he was sound asleep, I sat down in the rocker to relax . . . and it BROKE. Good times.

And yes, it's a good idea to record these moments somewhere, because it DOES go crazyfast, and it's hard to remember all of the beautiful little details.

Anonymous said...

This is too cute. I love hearing your stories about baby Gus Van Horn. This brings a smile to my face.

Bookish Babe

Gus Van Horn said...

Thank you both!

RE: one of Rational Jenn's comments: I have, over time, come up with an entire Saffir-Simpson Hurricane scale for diaper-related incidents.

Mike said...

That's sweet. I especially enjoyed the "continent" line... I'll have to remember to use that within earshot of the wife. Our third kid, first son, and likely last child, is due in late November. They'll have us outnumbered, and treachery only goes so far.

Congratulations, since I forgot to say it back at the time!

Gus Van Horn said...

Thanks, Mike!

Snedcat said...

Yo, Gus, for a Friday chuckle, be sure to check out today's Curtis comic strip.

Anonymous said...

Since we started solids, we have recently had "Poopsplosions!" in our house :)
-GVH sister-in-law

Gus Van Horn said...

I guess I know what to look forward to, now!

Gus Van Horn said...


Off-topic, but funny, anyway!