While I was having fun making pottery last weekend, Chris and Ali had some Daddy/Daughter time, which is always ripe with a few good tales. So today, Chris is guest blogging to share a couple of short stories from their day.

It Takes Guts To Be a Parent.

There are sensitive subjects that you have to handle carefully with small children. Reproduction, for instance. Death comes to mind.

Last Saturday I added one to the list: Taxidermy.

Ali and I went to the Bass Pro Shop, to “see the fishies.” It was the first time both of us had been there. We played on ATV’s, BassPro2

got on every boat available on the pretend dock,BassPro1

bought taffy, looked at waterfalls, etc.

But the odd question came when looking at a bear.Bear

A frozen, unhappy looking bear standing much taller than daddy, with his or her mouth wide open, claws ready to go. Ali and I had the typical conversation.

“Look at the big bear…..He’s so tall… He’s got big fingernails…They need a trim….Look at those teeth.”

And that’s when she said it: “Is that a real bear, daddy?”

I was frozen for a moment, then muttered, “Well, sort of, sweetheart.” I quickly changed the subject, and we went on checking out the other animals: wolves, deer, bears, a wild hog that had very scratchy fur. We discussed famous children’s literature regarding bears, wolves, houses, porridge, that sort of thing.

In any case, the question lingers in my mind. I feel like she just asked me where babies come from. How do you address the concept of hunting, death, and preservation with a 3 year old? This could bring many side issues such as guns, guts, Heaven, even art. One man’s fresh carcass is another man’s potential Picasso. The ultimate organic art.

For now, I think I’ll just have to stick with “Well, sort of, sweetheart.”

Germ Warfare.

Ali likes the park. Loves the park. That can be any of several parks around town. Overton Park in Cahaba Heights, the Trussville Park by the middle school, even Wald Park in Vestavia, but the King of Playgrounds is in Leeds on 119. IMG_8127 Those super high yellow twin towers, merry-go-round, tot lot, and assorted swings rule the school, as it were.

However, the one odd thing that most public parks have in common: no public restrooms. I’m not sure exactly why this is, and its never been a problem when Ali was Pampered, but now that we are potty trained, when nature calls, its usually calling on the red emergency phone and time is limited to answer.

So as we were playing at the park, I gave the 15 minute warning of time to leave. About a minute later, there was nature: ring-ring.

And rightfully so, Ali wasn’t ready to leave the park. She wanted to #1, and then get the rest of her allotted 15 minutes. I am just and fair to a fault, so there was only one answer.

Everyone’s best friend: the lonely port-o-john. Don’t know who put it there, don’t know how long its been there, don’t know if anyone’s been showing john the love and keeping him spic and span or not.

What’s life if not an adventure? I was certain that mommy had never done this with her. Not that we had talked about it. I just know mommy.

However, it was surprisingly not foul on the inside, had the appropriate paper resources, and only smelled of the industrially clean blue liquid living at the bottom. So aside from the short-lived fear of falling 4 feet into the murky blueness somewhat akin to the cave lake in Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince, Ali & I were both fine with it.

So this is where confession time comes in. The truck was parked a fair distance from the playground equipment and even further from john, so upon leaving the relatively un-nasty potty, I just let Ali go back to the playground. She had only touched the urinal once and the potty twice.

Plus, she was already running a fever, so I figured either

(a) her body is already fighting infection and is ready for this, or

(b) we can fight a virus with a nasty bacteria, sort of a Godzilla-vs-Mothra showdown that leaves all sickness dead.

We played for a little while longer, and when we got back to the truck, I gave us both a ferocious hand bath with wet wipes, then I took her through drive thru and let her eat in the backseat with her Mothra hands. Hopefully wet wipes are strong enough to defeat such an enemy, with or without Japanese subtitles.

15 thoughts on “When Daddy’s in Charge.

  1. I'm dying. I'm dying!!! You did not let Ali touch the urinal and then send her back to play with no sanitizer. Oh my gosh! Oh no oh no oh no oh no! It's not true. This MUST be storytelling hyperbole. I can't take it…..

  2. Port a John?

    I die.

    DIE, I say.

    At least you could tell her the reason the bear died was because he didn't wash his paws after using the Charmin in the woods. :)

  3. Great post Chris! I love Lianne's explanation of why the bear died.

    I think you did a great job with Ali. Just tuck some sanitizing wipes in your pocket next time! :)

  4. Glad y'all had a fun daddy/daughter date, but I can't believe you took Ali to a port a john, gross!

  5. Chris is hilarious! And that is exactly why I keep a thing of wipes and a bottle of sanitizer in the van at all times!

  6. You all seem like a really nice family but this is exactly why children get sick when going to a playground. She had a fever for goodness sake. Every other child at that park has now been exposed to her illness and possible fecal germs from the "john". Not good…not good.

  7. Hahaha, that is great. Although now I'm a little nervous since T and K are having Daddy/daughter time later this afternoon, with a promised trip to the park. I am going to make sure I put some hand sanitizer in her back pocket. :)

  8. Funny story Chris. I love the Mothra reference, I doubt I would have went and got wipes either so I won't say anything. Although I would not have used the port o john either. I have a phobia to them .

    It sounds like it was quite a Daddy/Daughter adventure.

  9. If your daughter is anything like mine, regarding that bear story, she'll ask about it again. It may not be today, or tomorrow…but it will happen! She'll just bring it up randomly… And you'll have to fumble through explaining it! Good luck!

  10. First of all EWWWW! I am a germaphobe (ya'll are obviously not) but that is disturbing. Your child just spread whatever she had (fever) plus all the nasty toilet germs to all the kids at the park. I called my mom and told her this story. She told me an almost as nasty story. She said a few years ago at the Bruno's memorial classic she went into a port a potty. She thought it was really nice and even had a purse holder. When she got out and told my step dad he informed her it was the men's urinal not a purse holder. She had put her louis vuitton in the urinal…..gross.

  11. Don't listen to Brooke. She's a little nutty about this stuff ;). I'm sure Ali and all the other kiddos at the park will be just fine and will probably have stronger immune systems in the long run for it.

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