My child fights sleep harder than I fight sobriety. Each night is a Mortal Kombat style showdown to get her to pick PJ’s, which currently is still easier than getting her to lie down. Luckily, I have found a new weapon, my Excalibur in the battle against slumber – Elmo Visits the Dentist and It’s Check-up Time, Elmo!
In the first tale, Elmo’s pal (somehow) is the Big Bad Wolf and he has a toothache, so Elmo helps him visit the dentist. Elmo needs to help Dada visit the eye doc because I can barely read this font in the dark. G looked at me and said, “Glasses off!” Not if you want a legit story, peanut. Last time Dada wung it, Momma said Dada isn’t allowed to make up his own versions of these stories.
The story is nice and long for a kid’s book, which helps G get sleepy, but when the dentist, Dr. Bradley aka Dr. Giggles McHuckster shows up in his floral shirt and drop this joke, it’s honestly hard to utter the words.
If you can’t read it, he says “Does a train have teeth?” “Then how come it can CHOO!” I need a minute. OK, maybe two.
Finally, Elmo gets a check-up from a normal health care provider…at least until this!
Doc starts asking some invasive personal questions. It’s good for kids so you know they’re safe, but as an adult, I ain’t saying nothing. Trying to get my insurance rate up, Doctor Nosy? I went for stomach flu recently to an urgent care. I couldn’t get 12 steps from the bathroom at one point. “Do you smoke?” No. “Did you ever?” Yes, very briefly in the span of my life and not often. “When was that? How often? Still using?” I’M HERE WITH THE SHITS JIMMY. DON’T WORRY THAT I HAD A CIGGY OR TWO AFTER NINE BEERS IN 2004. FIX MY O-RING AND SHUT YER YAP.
My family uprooted and moved late last year. It was a harrowing journey, fraught with peril. OK, it was five miles because we ran out of room. Apparently you need bedrooms to put kids in these days. I remember reading about pioneer families 9 deep living in a sod house with one room and I don’t know how people didn’t all just run out into the wilderness and die. Anyways, about three weeks after we moved in, the new city passed a massive school levy with raised my taxes through the roof. Great timing!
Well, the bennies finally showed up, our new city took time off paving the roads with 24 karat gold and hosted an Easter Egg hunt for all of us serfs. FREE! Away we went to one of the 57 parks in our city (that part is nice, but I haven’t found one with a lazy river of scotch yet, so color me unimpressed). The best part for me was the temperature dropped 20 degrees and I was starting day two of a gastro-intestinal virus. Nothing like doubling over from cramps while you’re trying to teach your kid how to elbow the competition on the sly.
They also started late, which was hi-larious. I forgot to mention my wife said, “I need your coat; I didn’t know it was this cold.” Every minute they were late, my achy cramping body began to shut down more. They finally started and we realized some health nerd planted mostly somewhat nutritious things like fruit snacks in the grass. My daughter picked one up, then began to fuss because she was promised candy. Atta girl! Nutrients are for losers! I got boxed out three times by a small Asian mother with a camera who may have been Karl Malone in disguise, but after 43 seconds, it was over.
On the way out, a not very fluent in English woman opened her van door while I was putting G in her car seat, causing me to get pinned against the car. It also happened to leave a huge red streak down her door, so oh well to that. In all, we had fun, especially when my daughter sucked all the chocolate off the one Snickers fun size we found and hand the slimy nougat lump to my wife. “Momma take.” Now we just need about two dozen more of these or a free hoverboard to use next year and the tax increase will be worth it.
I was reminded of a story at my show Friday (Rehab Tavern, third Friday of every month, free to all). The show went well, crowd was very attentive, and great sets from Bobby, Walta, Lindsey and Dan. Dan asked me how long the show had been going, which reminded me for about two years, it was an open mic night on Mondays, which had its ups and downs. Open mics are very random, usually on slower nights, so to make the show more productive for all, I added a small powwow before in the form of a comedy workshop. We bounced jokes ideas and occasionally I would see the joke done live, then was asked for feedback afterwards.
One of these times, I saw a guy who I had never seen before. He was late, but went up onstage and did his set. His first joke was about his wife and kids. His second was all the booty calls from randos and both jokes were heavy with the word bitch and other such non-flattering terms for women. He didn’t do very well, even by open mic Monday crowd standards, which is saying a lot.
After, I approached him and suggested he would be wise not to mention the fact he’s married with kids, then talk about hooking up with other women. “I’m not even married, it’s just part of the joke.” Well, still, then you should definitely not say that, it’s not important to the joke and all the women and most of the men in here don’t like that joke. “Man, I have freedom of speech. I can do what I want.” (Oh great, another high school dropout comic/Constitutional scholar) You’re right, I’m not saying you can’t, I’m just telling you that you will eat shit onstage and most of the people here hate your guts. You can do whatever you want, I’m just offering advice. “How long have you been doing comedy?” Longer than you. “I’m going to keep doing that joke.” OK, enjoy it. When you figure out it’s not working, let me know.
I never saw him again.
So if you hear a comic talking about his family, then cheating on his wife – it’s not real, but it’s also not remotely funny, but don’t worry – you’re watching a true freedom fighter up there. Get his name, because I forgot it right after the show.
Well, after a 5 week run of having two kids, I’m officially able to say having two kids is somewhat more challenging than having one. I know, I forgot to add a trigger warning or disclaimer, I’m just throwing it all out there. Here’s some things I’ve learned.
I want all hostage negotiators and bomb technicians to be family people. Sure, they may be sleep deprived, but anyone that can handle two crying children can handle something easy, like an explosive. Try changing a diaper with one hand while you keep a toddler from jumping off the bed onto the dog with the other.
Sleep when you can! My wife is nursing, so she has worse than anyone, since newborns wake up every couple hours to eat, but she doesn’t nap often during the day because she wants to “pay bills” and “clean the house” and “eat.” SLEEP. Last night everyone fell asleep and I was reading one of those unsolved murder pop-ups on my phone (I’m addicted, please send help) when I came to an epiphany. SLEEP STUPID. So I went to sleep. My daughter woke up at 3 am and wanted milk and stories, so I’m glad I went to bed early. Probably shouldn’t have read her the unsolved murder stories, but I didn’t screw up the milk.
YOU WILL ALWAYS FORGET SOMETHING AT THE GROCERY NOW. JUST LIVE WITH IT.
Use the skills you have with kid #1 on kid #2. I now am able to survive because of skills perfected with my daughter. Example – I had never changed a diaper before her, but I am proficient now. The other morning I was changing my son’s and observed he had not pooped. I quickly changed him in under 20 seconds and the second I applied the tape, I had a guttural rumbling and wet explosive blast. Had I been three seconds slower, I would have been covered in semi-solid waste. Side note: It’s amazing how loud a newborn can fart/crap.
Not sure there is much worse than a wet blanket. “What’s that, Chris?” I’ll give you an example. On my Facebook comedy page (@chriscoencomedy, like away), I posted a simple line – “How do you drink at work? Asking for myself.” You see, most people say “Asking for a friend!” and they mean themselves. So I flipped it, right? Hahahahahaha. Sigh. Well, it got a lot of responses, more than any other goofy post I’ve ever put up. Then I saw the update, “This conversation is incredibly stupid.” Well, it is a comedy page, so yes, it’s not discussing liberty vs. security, astrophysics or even a nice healthy recipe for squash soup. It’s a joke about me trying to find out how to drink at work (seriously, click the contact link and let me know – don’t read this, work people).
I have never seen this, though, like I saw recently on a comedy show promo my pal put up (I won’t name names to avoid any unnecessary drama for all parties). The show is a cool idea, it’s the “Founders” of Columbus Comedy. Basically all the comics who helped start and/or run open mics and booked shows before the scene grew up into its current form. I started in 2007 and everyone on the show was seasoned vet then, so I thought it was a cool idea. Oh by the way, everyone on the show is a white guy. BUM BUM BUM!!!!! (Dramatic music in background).
Why does that matter? Well, apparently it started a multiple person wet blanket fest in the comments section because people started posting about how white and male the show was and how horrific and terrible this was and oh God, the humanity. Never mind that 1) one of the hosts is a female, 2) two of the female comics that could have been on the show can’t make it due to distance or circumstances beyond their control, 3) no one on the peanut gallery thread was around then to see who was left off the show or had any suggestions as to who should have been on the show, 4) probably supports no actual shows now or did then – there’s diversity on nearly every single show in Columbus and boy oh day there’s a shitpot ton of different shows in town now and 5) who gives a red shit, either go or don’t. I heard another performer say once to me, “The show was great, it was very diverse!” I said, “Oh, so it went well? Funny show?” “Oh no, but very diverse!” Maybe I’m wired differently, but I can watch a show with all gay or all straight performers, all minority or all white, female only or all males or hell, one of each sub group you can name…and I only care if it makes me laugh.
I book a show monthly and in honesty, I try to book different people on the show. Why? I never know what the crowd will be. I’ve had comics in college and middle aged comics. Parents and people that couldn’t take care of a cactus. I’ve had every race, sex, sexual orientation and gender booked, because it’s smart business. If I’m booking a show called “Laughing Ladies” for example, though, I’m not putting guys on it. It just so happens that the open mics and shows that were running were run by these guys; the ones that weren’t were run by people who are not available, have moved or quit comedy altogether. The irony is that the same venue, Backstage Bistro at Shadowbox Live supports shows not only diverse in character, but diverse in nature, from stand-up to improv to sketch.
Thanks to the comments pissing me off and my refusal to engage them on someone else’s page out of respect, I will do something I don’t do often or maybe ever, I’m promoting a show on my website I have absolutely nothing to do with and by proxy, all the shows that day of the week. http://www.shadowboxlive.org/shows/tuesdays Find one you like! I wonder if these wet blankets enjoy anything. “Here’s a steak?” “Um, is this organic grass fed beef?” “Happy Birthday!” “Ugh, is that what you bought me? I don’t like yellow.” I wonder if these idiots ask the demographic composition of their favorite restaurant when they sit down to eat. OF COURSE THEY DON’T I’M BEING FACETIOUS. It’s Friday, party poopers. Take some Ex-Lax for that constipation and quit dropping comments on people’s comedy show promos.
Well, it finally happened, my wife left the house this weekend for the first time with only dad to watch the little ones. For those without children, I’ll explain the layout. I have a two and a half year old that is currently into 1) jumping on every piece of furniture, including the ottoman with casters 2) slime that can we wiped, rubbed or stuffed anywhere – thanks Target $1 section and 3) climbing things, like the cat condo, bed frames and even her brother’s crib.
Sounds dangerous, well much like Odysseus had to choose the perils of Scylla and Charybdis, my other option was my newborn son. We are breastfeeding, so he eats every two hours. That’s starting from the start time, also, so basically every 90 minutes, he needs to eat or the crap is in the ol’ fan and last check, dad didn’t have any milk (although another few bad weeks of eating and the breasts might show up).
She left to run some errands, probably with her head out the window like a dog riding for the first time alone and free. About seven seconds after she accelerated from the driveway, my son began to cry. I paced, I bounced and I switched hands. I tried to sing, but not surprisingly made it worse – my kid doesn’t like my version of Wasted Years, apparently. I went upstairs and downstairs and finally had a workable level of anger from him.
On cue, my daughter finally tired of smearing slime into the carpet and came crashing down the hall like an adorable rhino. She scaled the crib and yelled “Watch animals!” This means watch the program on Netflix with animals. Of course, on the kids channel, that’s literally all 400 options. Plus, to save a buck, we put a really slow processing TV we bought off a guy online in the kids’ room, so it takes about 35 seconds to load a Netfilx choice. “This animal show, peanut?” Silence. Thank God, I guessed right. Click button to select. “Different one! Different one! No this one! NO THIS ONE!” “OK, OK, OK, I’ll pick another one!” Repeat for 12 selections, while brother, now roused from his semi-sleep from the yelling begins to fuss.
I was sure it had been four days at that point, but it turns out it was 50 minutes when she pulled back in. I was sweating, my son was sweating, my daughter was jumping on the crib, and I am sure the dog was planning something also. Now I know why moms gets maternity leave and dads get their asses back to work. If I read a story about a science lab making it where men can give milk, I’m blowing it up.