Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Advice on raising children from an idiot

An evening spent trying to convince a one month year-old to go to sleep gives you an interesting perspective on life. I presume a short stretch in a Vietnamese POW camp would achieve the same thing (no disrespect Sen. McCain, I said "short stretch"). As such, I'm a bit delirious today. I think she's upset because she's developed some baby acne. The pressures of this celebrity-obsessed society are just too much for her. Luckily her prom is about 18 years away so I think she'll be good by then. Regardless she'll only be allowed to date if I've passed on so she'll probably be spending prom night at home.

Scanning the room last night I noticed a couple books on baby names. If this isn't the biggest scam in the history of the world I don't know what is. The more "creative" of these books are nothing more than a listing of random words sold for $29.99. One of the books had sections titled "colours", "verbs" and "flowers". To all you struggling authors out there, forget trying to put together some made up pap for the book club set. Just simply grab a dictionary, randomly chose some words, write them down and send them to your publisher. You'll save alot of time and you won't have to hang out with Oprah. Here's an excerpt from my upcoming "Book of Awesome Names that assure your child will be a successful hedge fund manager or personal injury attorney".

P
Prescott
Pressure
Press-on
Presume
Prudholme Bay
Pseudonym
Pvt. Craig R. Wipscott

If I went any further you'd owe me $20.

The whole obssession with baby names is a bit tiresome. I doubt our parents wasted much time stressing over what to call us. Usually they just went to their chosen religious text or their family tree for ideas. My Dad named me after the first thing he saw when I was handed to him. Personally, I love the name "Blanket".

As we all know expectant parents are suckers for overpriced, unneccessary crap with their susceptibility to being "taken" only surpassed by brides to be. I was not prepared, however, for just how bad the rip-offs are. Now that the kid is actually here my suspicions as to the useless-ness of much of what is peddled to first-time parents have been confirmed. The World Wide Net Web lacks the bandwidth to list all of the examples of highway robbery I've encountered so I'll just give you a couple examples. The first is a "hooter hider". This is a $40+ item used to facilitate public breastfeeding. Great idea. Fortunately its already available. It's called an apron. They're pretty easy to find. You may already have one. Pottery Barn Kids sells...you know what, the fact that there is a Pottery Barns Kids pretty much makes my point for me.

Luckily the most egregious profiteering is at the expense of those with more money than sense so it's somewhat of a victimless crime. If hundreds of $35 cupholders are sold to the North of Bloor set who really cares? The problem is that the "status-ization" or child rearing creates demand from everyone. It's consumerism at its worst. Don't feel bad enough that you just gave birth and aren't sleeping? How about we layer on some feelings of inadequacy because you can't afford some organic baby clothes or a Kate Spade diaper bag. You really must be a terrible parent. Hopefully your kid enjoys life as a crack whore.

For some reason society deems what I do as important enough to pay me a decent wage. As such I can afford this crap and despite my reluctance have been tricked into trying to keep up with the Junior Joneses with numerous purchases (I own a Bugaboo stroller and must admit it is a wonderfully engineered product). I'm not sure how you completely avoid it. My only advice is that maybe wait for a few weeks before splashing out for that $75 change pad cover. When something is covered in shit people don't tend to look at the label.

Note 1: After further review, Running Groups may be a bigger rip-off than name books. You pay good money to have some douchebag tell you where to run and for how long? Can't you figure that out on your own? I tell you what, I'll take 25% off what they're charging and I'll tell you to run even further. Now that's value.

Note 2: Expectant parents. If you're really sick of being asked what names your thinking of, tell people Jon-Benet is at the top of your list. That should end that conversation.

2 comments:

Dominic Bugatto said...

You missed your calling , I look forward to your monthly column in Today's Parent ;)

You're like the Andy Rooney ( 60 minutes ) of the blogsphere .

Anonymous said...

How old is a one month year old exactly?