Friday, August 5, 2011

Babies as Bombs or Blessings

Watching out my window, I learn a lot about folks as they watch their kids at the pool and walk their dogs. It seems that the men are mostly on stand-by for emergencies, while the women want to bond with someone else, even if it's not with their children. Women also come to the pool with all kinds of equipment for hygiene, safety, and play.

When a woman walks her dog, she has on her exercise attire, something to drink in her hand or fanny pack, a poop bag, and her cell phone. The men wear whatever they are going to wear the rest of the day; if they're drinking anything, it's coffee or a beer; and they decided to walk the dog to get away from conversation. They know that the condo complex supplies poop bags every fifty feet along the water. If they happen to receive a surprise package from their dog, and they happen to be near a poop pick-up station, then they bend and retrieve the specimen. If not near a poop bag, they generally walk on and figure it's biodegradable, so what's the problem?

Wise women want to be prepared; most men think they are prepared. I think it's because many men love the rush it gives them to figure things out on the fly. That's what heroes are made of. Wise women are afraid of domino-effect consequences, so they over-prepare for every event. Men stay lost in their own thoughts until time to spring into heroic action, leading to a ticker tape parade in their honor. I think we could get more dads to change diapers if we presented dirty diapers as bombs needing to be defused before they detonate, catching them in terrible collateral damage.

Dads also seem to believe in the principle of survival of the fittest; whereas mothers tend to their children as if each is a precious and unique jewel. Dads walk and expect their charges to step in line behind them; mothers spend must energy gathering their chicks under their wings and checking to make sure that nothing is swooping down from the sky or sneaking up from the savannah to grab their baby birds in its sharp-taloned claws.

Dad's figure that you gotta let 'em learn the hard way; if they're scared of the water, throw 'em into the deep end. They'll either drown or swim. Because there are now laws against letting your child drown to teach him or her a lesson, once the emergency is dire enough, dad will save you. Then you have to sit out until you can stop crying like a big baby. What doesn't kill you, will make you strong.

Maybe we should have dads walk around with bowling ball-sized hand grenades strapped to their bellies until the babies they make are born. At the baby's birth, we pull the pin. Everything the dads do, they'll have to hold on tightly to the pin in their bowling ball or risk being blown sky-high. Do they want their progeny to be bombs or blessings?