The Jasper Chronicles

The Journal of a Cynical Dad

Friday, August 29, 2008

Balance of Power for August 29th

I've been sick for most of the week, so the balance of power this week goes to P, who picked up the slack. The Boy made a late charge this afternoon by washing his hands in his milk, but too little too late. The points were in and the judges made their decision.

Next week I fully expect to regain my rightful place at the top. It's a short week though, so sabotage might be in order. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Pretty Good Morning

Can I give you a kiss?

The Boy: Okay

Can I give you a hug?

TB: Okay

- Kiss me again Dad
- Kiss me again
- Kiss me again
- Give me a really big kiss

Even though I suspect The Boy was so affectionate only because P had gone to yoga class, I'll take it.

Tuesday, August 26, 2008


Couple weeks ago The Boy celebrated his third birthday. And it just dawned on me - he's starting to build lifetime memories.


Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Toy Heaven

Boing Boing is particularly good this week.

Little girl figures out how to beat those rip-off Claw Machines. You know, the ones with the claws so weak you never snag a prize? Houdini would be proud.

Lessons Learned

If you're a regular reader of Boing Boing (and if you're not, you should be) you've already come across this. Originally posted on I'm Learning to Share.

So many great parenting tips rolled up in this 1941 ad I had to repost it here.

Tip #1 - Beat your kid and act surprised when they have a tantrum
Tip #2 - All kids are constipated
Tip #3 - Best way to get kids to eat something they don't like is to force them. Mealtime in this household must be a hoot.
Tip #4 - Your child will judge you as a parent based on whether you can make them poo

Click on the image to view it full size.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Go Canada?

Today Canada surpassed their previous medal count at the Summer Olympics. A part of me is happy, a part of me is embarrassed, a part of me died inside.

I'm happy because winning a medal at the Olympics is a huge accomplishment, and when it's a Canadian even better.

I'm embarrassed because for a country as developed as Canada is, we do very poorly at the Olympics. Maybe it's that prevailing Canadian politeness, but our athletes don't seem hungry, or greedy enough to win.

And a part of me died because, for the third Olympics in a row, we've won medals in Trampoline. Trampoline! I'd settle for a lower medal count than endure, "Canada. Tops in Trampoline." Yeah yeah, I recognize the athleticism and the fact I couldn't do it myself, but that doesn't make it any less ridiculous.

Care to guess what my perspective is on Rhythm Gymnastics?

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Flip The Switch

Before The Boy (BTB) I wasn't much into kids. Nieces and nephews always gravitated to Uncle E, my big brother, because I pretty much treated them like adults. Even tragic family stories I'd hear on the news barely tugged a heartstring, kids just didn't register on my radar.

Then P announced she was pregnant. Me? Father? Oil and water seemed like a better mix. I had no idea what to expect, let alone what to do, but a co-worker reassured me, "You might not know what to do now, but once you hold your child for the first time, you'll just know." And he was right. Rookie-parenting mistakes aside I slid right into being Dad and have never looked back.

Here's to three incredible years. Happy Birthday son! I can't imagine life without you.

Friday, August 08, 2008

The Nick of Time

This September The Boy goes into full-time daycare. That's right, against all odds P managed to land a daycare spot just six blocks from our house. And not a moment too soon.

Right now The Boy goes part-time to an unlicensed daycare/babysitter. A lovely, sweet Ukrainian Croatian woman who has turned her home into a (slightly?) more saliva-covered version of Toys 'R Us. The Boy looks forward to going each week, and why wouldn't he? It's endless free play. No structure, no routine, and no rules as far as I can tell.

Lately though, Lovely, Sweet Ukrainian Croatian daycare has been losing its shine for me. The Boy and his contemporaries are getting older, and pushing their limits. No problem, that's what kids do. I just wish their limits would stay the hell off one another, because every time The Boy comes home he's got a brand new set of bruises to show me. Last night he came home with a scraped knee, a skinned elbow, a puncture wound on his shoulder and what looked like a bite-mark on his back.

I think three 3 year-old boys and one 5 year-old boy beating the snot out of each other is probably beyond what Lovely, Sweet Ukrainian Croatian daycare lady can manage. It's time to pull The Boy out.

Three more visits and we can close this chapter and open the "More Rules, Less Bruises" one. At least that's the theory.


Tomorrow we've invited the same group of boys to The Boy's birthday party (they're actually great friends). I hope it doesn't become a free-for-all.

Friday, August 01, 2008

He's 3' Tall. He's 3' Tall. He's 3' Tall.

Bought a brand new DVD player today. Put it up where I thought The Boy couldn't reach it. He pulled it down.

[Shit] "Oh don't touch that. It's Dad's new DVD player."

Startled and unsure what to do next, he dropped it on the floor again. Now the door won't open.

The Boy is 38" and not about to get any shorter. Got to remember that.

I've Become A Monkey

At least my hands have, and he's called Bruno.

Bruno is a puppet. A monkey puppet purchased for $4.95 at Ikea. Bruno speaks in a high-pitched voice and, because he has limp, lifeless arms, does everything with his mouth. He's orange with oversized eyes and a ridiculous springy tail. Bruno is quite possibly the ugliest monkey puppet on the face of the earth.

Bruno is part of The Boy's inner circle. Whenever something significant happens the puppet is the first to know. Confidant, co-conspirator, and best friend, Bruno can make him laugh and sooth him when he cries.

The fact he prefers a puppet over me is something I'm still coming to terms with, but it makes The Boy happy so who am I to complain? Not to mention Bruno can impart pearls of wisdom that would otherwise be ignore if they came from P or me. Things like "Don't stick chopsticks in your ear", or "Jumping off the fifth step will probably hurt", or "Gaaaah, give the box-cutter to Daddy".

Being Bruno is not all that bad, except The Boy wants him all the time. And only I get to be Bruno, a testament to my ugly-monkey-puppeteering skills I suppose, but there are times I wish the monkey would just stay down. Because I have to wear Bruno all the time, he has "helped" me do all sorts of things like vacuum, chop vegetables, apply sunscreen (it's as messy as it sounds), and followed me to the bathroom.

"Can you put Bruno on Dad?"

"Uh, well can Bruno help me wipe my ass?"

"Of course he can Dad. Bruno can do that."

And so...

The astute among you will quickly realize that, yes in fact, I have two hands. But once The Boy gave me the green light there was no turning back (Note to self: Cross "Monkey wiping my ass" off my list of things to do before I die).

And if you're wondering, Bruno got tossed in the washing maching right away.