"Wow, You’re So Good With Kids"

by doodaddy on October 19, 2007

Boobaby invented a game yesterday called "daddy pommel horse," or maybe it was "kiddie-elevator." She runs down a small slope to where I’m waiting at the bottom to catch her and lift her up over my head like she’s an Olympic gymnast. Repeat, repeat, repeat.

Naturally, some of Boo’s friends wanted in on the game, and soon there was a group of four or five waiting at the top of the hillock, taking it in turn to careen down to my waiting, lifting arms. Thursday being the dads’ group day, most of the parents looking on nearby were men. Burly, strong-looking men.

"Wow, you’re so good with kids!" said one.

I hear this a lot, and it makes me feel good, because I’ve worked hard to become so. But then another dad chimed in.

"We should pay you!" he said.

Well, harumph. Do you know that sort of hollow, throaty feeling you get when a compliment has gone terribly, terribly wrong? I’m sure he meant well, but that crack just pissed me off, and I didn’t really know why until I got home and realized this basic truth:

More than one dad can play kiddie-elevator.

I didn’t have to be the only trampoline dad. I would happily have taken turns. And it’s not even that I was getting tired, although my biceps would have appreciated the break. Just imagine the fantastically great example we would set as parents if we all played together! Would it have been so very hard for the daddies to take turns? The kids were certainly doing a great job of it.

But no. They stood around, engaging primarily with their own kids or each other, not playing, village-style, in a group. And with cracks about how they should pay me? Gah, it makes me feel like in this particular village, they see me as the friendly but insane village idiot.

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in community,oddparents,playground,whining ·

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Johnny October 19, 2007 at 8:55 am

It’s amazing what children can teach us if we just let them. It’s sad that all those other guys just looked on. Even if they did not want to do the kiddie-elevator they should at least be engaging the children.

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Dawn October 19, 2007 at 10:08 am

Those other dads will get fat … You will be buff. And if an army of ants shows up at the playground, all your small minions… uh… friends… will gladly go pour honey on the stand around dads.

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aimee/greeblemonkey October 19, 2007 at 8:19 pm

Love Dawn’s comment.

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