Friday, August 19, 2005

My Dinner With Damien.

Let's take a break from the usual stuff - you know, Cindy's insane, Randi's lying, Al's stealing, the Left wants the Iraq War to end up like Viet Nam, blah-yadda-whatever - to do some old-fashioned, personal anecdote blog stuff. Sound good?

My girlfriend, Hermione, and I have been together for mumblemumble years and one bone of contention in our relationship was over children: I wanted them and she didn't. For some reason, I was keen on the idea that I needed to raise some little Belligerents to help bring balance to the Force or something like that. Hermione, OTOH, had no maternal instincts and wasn't gonna play this game.

Her best friend Patti got married about 10 years ago and we were in the wedding party. Their first daughter, Shayla, is about 7 years old now and it was when she was maybe 2 that I realized that I DIDN'T want kids. While visiting them for dinner, I watched Tony, Patti's husband and baby daddy, playing with Shayla, blowing bubbles and playing some nursery rhyme noise making device and then it clicked.

I'd always thought that people shouldn't be allowed to have children until they could manage having a large dog for an extended period to get used to a high-maintenance life form living under the same roof. For some reason, I never applied this concept to my own life and I realized that since I was totally a cat person and hated dogs precisely for their dependency and copious amounts of manure they produce, I had no business thinking that I was suited for breeding if I wasn't going to stomach the actual raising process.

All of our friends who've had kids have disappeared. They're tired, they're broke, they can't find someone to watch the kids, they can't do what they want because of the kids. They're stuck. They don't seem very happy, but societal pressure requires them to stiff upper lip it and say it's the most rewarding thing they've ever done.

I know that there are many people for whom reproducing is the greatest achievement in their lives and their minds get rewired by thier little sour milk-smelling, diaper-filling Hellspawn and that's fine for them, but I realized that we're just too selfish to make the sacrifice necessary, but also we're not such egotistical twits that we need to "leave a legacy" as a walking monument to our existance. Believe me, the world knows we exist and it's far more practical to deprogram those led astray by the liberal fascists than try to outbreed them.

This realization was confirmed when Mix Master Mike played the DEMF a few years ago. It had been raining pretty hard, off and on, thru the whole Memorial Day weekend and it was questionable whether we'd be able to go down to the show. He was spinning around 11:30 pm and we were playing it by ear as to whether the weather would cooperate. About 11:00 pm, we decided to chance it and hopped in the UAV and went Downtown and saw the show. It sprinkled a bit, but it was OK.

While driving back, I mentioned to H, "If we had kids we couldn't have done this. We couldn't have found a sitter to work so late and we would've had to line them up too far in advance to make the snap decision." That's what I mean by selfish - we just want to keep our flexibility to do what WE want to do, when we want to do it and not have to shelve our lives because of some misguided need to breed.

OK, enough about our petty lives, let's talk about Patti and Tony and Shayla and the younger son, Nolan. They moved to North Carolina several years ago for Tony's work and we don't see them much as a result. The other day, Hermione had gone out with Patti and Patti's sister and their combined 4 kids and when she walked in, she looked shell-shocked, grabbed my shoulder and asked, "You still don't want to have kids, right? Good!" She was a wreck after SIX HOURS in the company of crumbcrunchers.

When we got together for dinner the other night, they had to bring their kids along because, that's right, no one was available to watch them. While we hadn't intended to do drive-bys in Mexicantown or hit the strip clubs afterward, it was still a distraction, albeit a minor one since the kids were well-behaved.

As the evening was winding down, I'd made a comment about squealing like a pig and Patti encouraged the kids to make pig noises. (It's a parent thing. I don't understand.) Nolan was really trying to get into it when suddenly HE THROWS UP LIKE SOMETHING OUT OF "THE EXORCIST"!!! This fountain of spew just issued forth like he was a cute statue in Hell!

Needless to say, we erupted into hysterics. Man oh man was that funny. I got up, clapped Tony on the shoulder and said, "Next time, try rubbers." Hermione said that after I left, Nolan giggled and said, "I exploded." Wacky stuff.

I guess some people find goal-tending their spawn to be "the most rewarding thing in my life" but for me, if I can't adopt a 14-year-old Asian girl - you know, to clean the house - I'm just going to have to pass on this aspect of life. I'm not sure what I'm doing this weekend, but it's OK because we'll be able to move on our terms at the time of our choosing.

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