Parenting snapshots

I feel guilty when I see all those hits from my wonderful readers, and I remember that I haven’t posted anything new in a few days. Then I remember that most of you don’t pay me, while the people who do pay me have been demanding most of my waking hours.

Still, I want to share a couple of things with you today, kind readers. What’s more, in the next couple of days I will fill you in on some Big News for the Sand in the Gears staff. Aren’t you just tingling all over with anticipation? I have that effect on people, you know.

Back to the matters at hand, which aren’t great matters of national security, mind you, but if you want that you can read one of 10,000 daily news issue blogs (and odds are once you’ve read the one, you’ve read the others anyway). My, that was catty, wasn’t it?



The Scene: My family and I are walking through a park near our house. I have the baby jogger, but Caleb has decided he wants to run too, so he’s a little bit ahead of us, head down, little arms pumping diligently, bobos slapping on the sidewalk. Across the park, about a quarter-mile away, a high school track team jogs along the edges of a field.

Me: “I know men and women are supposed to be equal and all, but did you ever notice that when a track team’s boys and girls go running together, most of the girls clump up significantly behind the boys?”

Wife: “That’s because they’re all talking.”

Me: “That’s not very politically correct, you know.”

Wife: “But look at them. You can see them talking.”

Me: “It’s not about what you can see, it’s about what you’re supposed to believe.”

Wife: “I guess I’m a scientist at heart. Observe, baby.”

Me: “You know this is going in the blog, right?”

Wife: “Speaking of which, I have a question. How come you never blog any of the dumb things you say?”

Me: (deleted)


Proof that I am a bad parent: Caleb went to spend the day with some friends who live on a farm. This involved much frolicking and sweating, which was fine, because I like to hose him down in the back yard each day anyway. But check out the following exchange:

Woman: “Hey kids, let’s go feed the chickens.”

Caleb: “Yeah, let’s go feed the chicken nuggets.”

Just to highlight the distance between good and bad parenting, I’ll share with you what the child of this friend then asked:

Child of Good Parent: “What’s a chicken nugget?”

Bad parent. I am a very bad parent.


  1. MarcV

    A chicken nugget? Why it’s pieces parts, and parts is parts.

    I’m surprised that your wife hasn’t taken up the blogging challenge, what with the rich source of posting possibilities she sleeps next to and lives with each day. If she did have a blog, would you give her a special link? My wife could probably come up with a good blog too, but she has a hard enough time figuring out e-mail.

  2. Ric

    Bad parenting? Bah! Imagine the beatings your child will avoid by having the same cultural referents that the other kids do. No Piggy from Lord of the Flies is your Caleb!

  3. jim


    Women BEHIND the men? Are you suggesting that TV does not reflect real life? Every time I see women exercising on TV, they are outdoing the men by an order of magnitude. The women always have arrogant smirks on their faces and a healthy-sexy patina of perspiration, while the sweat-drenched men dragging up the rear look haggard and beaten. Isn’t that the way it really is, Tony?

  4. llanaw

    1. You are not a bad parent and you know it. 2. I would pay you even more money if you would take that silly “Mama” off the donor’s list and put my name there. 3. The females run behind the guys for reasons I will not discuss with you.

  5. Craig Schamp

    …but if you want that you can read one of 10,000 daily news issue blogs (and odds are once you’ve read the one, you’ve read the others anyway). My, that was catty, wasn’t it?

    Yes, catty. But not overly catty–not déclassé. Very nicely done.

  6. Debbie

    As for the running behind thing……I will discuss it with you. No, I will just tell you,
    it is the behind thing.:}
    Now, for Caleb. Chicken nuggets! Tony, you bring me that baby. I don’t believe you are a bad parent
    but I do believe I have more time to take Caleb to the chickens. I feed twice a day and would LOVE
    the company.Love and miss you all, Debbie
    P.S. leave the mama, i like it.

  7. wife

    Thank you MarcV for the vote of confidence. Do tell though, what on earth could I post since my adorable husband steals all of my witty repartee and claims it as his own :). Actually, he just makes me look good.

    So, here’s more fodder for the bad parent slop bucket. On this same outing with the aforementioned good parent the good mom offered bagels for breakfast to which our adorable and occassionally well fed child responds, “No, no bagels. I like doughnuts.”

    Can we get a do over?

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