April's Real Blog

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Meredith Outsmarts Dee

Mike believes U R all sitting on the edge of yr seats, w8ing 2 find out what happed next after Meredith's new beds were delivered. Here's his next installment:
April,

Formerly little sis. Shopping in furniture stores can be tricky. You think that when you see the furniture on display in the store, then that is how the furniture is going to look in your home. After all, the common perception is that you are just moving something from one place to another. However, I can tell you, even a simple move like from a downstairs apartment to an upstairs apartment, can be tricky when it comes to beds.

For example, in the store, my daughter's bunk bed had a ladder all the way to the foot of the bed, and the bed was taller than I was. Not only that, but I could swear the bed did not have a desk beneath it. Yet, when the bed was assembled in my daughter's room, the ladder was about 1/3 metre from the end, it was about my wife Deanna's height and there was a desk with a chair and lamp under it. I mentioned those differences to Deanna and she said, "Well, I guess you are not as observant a writer as you thought you were." She seemed to be completely unperturbed by the differences, almost as if she expected the bunk beds to look differently. That's one thing I can say about Deanna and our home decor, when there are unexpected changes in things we ordered together, they never seem to get her upset.

While I was mulling over these alterations in my mind, Deanna began putting a pillowcase on a pillow, in that way she does where she pins the pillow under her chin and forces the pillowcase on it, using her chin for leverage. I would show her the way mom taught us to do that, but experience has taught me saying "Mom does this better" is not a good thing to tell your wife. Besides, if I showed Deanna a better way, then I might find myself putting pillowcases on pillows. Nobody wants that, especially me.

While she was doing this, my daughter walked up to her and said, "Can I call my friend Karina an' tell her I got bump beds?" Deanna's reply was "Sure!" My reply would have been "Don't call it 'bump beds' to your friends or they will think you are an ignorant Quebecoise girl." However, I was too disoriented to respond.

Then I realized my daughter was playing my wife like a violin in a glue factory, with a series of extremely intelligent questions. My daughter said, "Can I tell her she can sleep over sometime?" Deanna replied, "Of course!" She didn't expect the trap which was coming.

As my wife showed her firm, rounded buttocks to the camera as she made up my daughter's bed; my daughter proceeded on her inquiry with "When can she stay over?" My wife remained firmly non-committal with "I don't know. We'll have to figure that out." Having been rebuffed, my daughter decided to try a different tact. She said, "Can I have TWO friends?"

As you probably recollect, my daugher has never had a friend over, and so it was with great surprise that she informed us of this Karina. I would have thought she had two friends, until I examined the question and realized that she was not saying, "May I have two friends?" but "Can I have two friends?" She was questioning her ability to have that many friends and given her normal disposition, this is a reasonable question.

At this point my son piped up and said, "What about ME? I gots friends too!" Well, I am sure you know what direction my son was going to take that statement. If Deanna said, "Yes" to my son, then you could be guaranteed that little Cribbie, my son's crib friend, was going to get invited. My wife wisely responded, "Let's just think about it, OK?"

However, she should have used her words more carefully, because my daughter immediately got on her call phone and called Karina, using the exact words which Deanna told her to. She said, "Hello, Karina?--I'm thinking of inviting you for a sleep-over!!" Deanna was dumbfounded at how easily she was verbally manipulated and I was bursting with fatherly pride.

It didn't last too long, because my daughter's next words were, "It's Meredith, Karina. Meredith Patterson. I sit next to you in kindergarten. I have blonde hair. No, it's not bleached. Yes, the girl with the fat lips." Then there was some crying about something. I don't remember what. More tomorrow.

Love,
Michael Patterson
Aw, poor Meredith. And Mike, pls don't waste NEmore time B4 U teach her and Robin that they are not "bump beds." But leave out yr prejudice against the Quebecois.

Apes

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10 Comments:

  • At 11:44 AM, Anonymous qnjones said…

    Ugly Brother,

    You might not know this, but kids in the age 2-4 range are inveterate liars and "story tellers," which will explain why Robin made up that story about having friends, also, kids really shouldn't have sleepover parties until they are toilet trained for awhile, if a little kid comes over to sleep he will be too scared to use the potty in the middle of the night and will pee in the bed, trust me, I know all of this because of Frenchy, she invited her fiance Jean Valjean Robespierre over for a sleepover, we had no idea, she just brought the kid home from school with her one day, and next thing you know, the lies start up, Frenchy tells Jean Valjean that "her real mommy is coming back for her someday" and "My daddy is the strongest man in Milborough" and "The lady with the pudding butt is our servant," and that rotten little Jean Valjean made me go out and fetch him Gauloise cigarettes, and then at bedtime, I thought everything was going to be fine, but then in the middle of the night, Frenchy started screaming, Jean Valjean wet the bed, something about how he was afraid to use our bourgeois potty, it wasn't revolutionary enough, and he chose to soil our bourgeois bump bed mattress instead, but later Frenchy told me he was just scared that the monsters under the bump bed would grab his legs and pull him under if he got up, well, that was enough "fun" for Frenchy, we don't allow her to have friends over anymore, she can see them at nursery school, of course, with Robin, everyone knows this business about friends is just a lie, so stick a bar of soap in his mouth and make him hold it there until he counts to a million, that seems to work on the lies, I also have a waterboard setup but haven't had to use it yet.

    Liz

     
  • At 12:13 PM, Anonymous michael patterson said…

    Elizabeth,

    Slightly older little sis. The bar of soap is a good idea, but I couldn’t find any. I called Deanna about it, and she said we only use that soft soap stuff where you squirt the soap out of a bottle. I tried that with my son, but (thanks to his sister) he became convinced the soft soap container was a cream-filled doughnut and lost all thoughts about counting to a million, while trying to chew his way through the container. I remember that even back when he thought dirt was chocolate, he chewed for quite some time before he realized it was dirt. Needless to say, he knows the difference between a soft soap container and a cream-filled doughnut now.

    Do you know where you can get new soft soap containers? I tried looking up “soap store”, but found nothing.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 12:47 PM, Anonymous liz patterson said…

    Ugly Brother,

    Maybe Robin has a taste bud deficiency, you should test him like we test kids hearing at school, make him taste stuff that tastes like the four tastes: sweet, salty,...and whatever the other ones are, anyway, the next time he makes a sticky-outty tongue laugh, grab his tongue and put the stuff on it, and ask him what he tastes, that way you can test him, and if he doesn't taste all the flavors, you know he is a witch or something, I don't really remember, but anyway, maybe he could get a tongue transplant, also, have you thought of having Robin tested for Special Needs?, he sounds a little nuts, also, do you have him toilet trained yet?, Frenchy is trained, she uses the toilet and keeps insisting we buy her a proper bidet, what a nut, I am totally sticking her in special needs when she gets to school so they can straighten her out.

    Liz

     
  • At 2:35 PM, Anonymous michael patterson said…

    Elizabeth,

    Slightly older little sis. I didn’t know what the other 2 of the 4 tastes you mentioned were, so I called up Mom and she said the tastes were: sweet, salty, greasy and pastry. I told her that I was planning to test my son to see if he had a taste bud deficiency. Of course, mom being mom, decided she had to come down and help. Well, all she found were carrots in the house, so we had to go grocery-shopping, and that’s where we are now—stuck in the pastry section of the grocery store, while mom selects the appropriate choices to test my son in the pastry taste. This may take awhile. Mom went to get another grocery cart. I wish I had brought my laptop along. After seeing mom bend over several times to get pastries off the lower shelves, I am beginning to think that Leonard Driscoll needs to go whale-hunting on his boat in my next novel Breaking the Windjammer.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 3:41 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    ugh, so, like, i was home sick from school 2day w/a v. bad cold. after mom finished "helping" mike, she brot me a bowl of soup, which she sed was home made, but i cd tell it was totally campbell's chicken noodle. i reminded mom that i don't eat chicken nemore, and she got all pissy, like "ok, then we'll just starve this cold." and i sed, "that's fever." and mom was like, "whuh?" and i sed, "it's 'starve a fever, feed a cold.'" just then, jeremy arrived w/take-out from "garden of eden," so now i'm having sum totally delicious vegan veggie soup, and mom is off pouting.

    jeremy is such a life-saver!

    apes

     
  • At 4:14 PM, Anonymous liz patterson said…

    Ugly Brother,

    That silly Martian April indicates that your taste testing is over, what did you find out?, I'm pretty sure she's right about the four tastes, I can remember when we were kids, her favorite meal to serve us was tuna casserole (greasy, salty), hot dogs in buns (salty, greasy, pastry), potato chips (salty, greasy), and ice cream with lots of hot fudge (sweet), that about covers it, although who knows what that vegetarian crap April eats tastes like, those crazy veggies have probably discovered a new flavor (and it is probably bad), anyway, let me know what happened with Robin, don't pull too hard on his tongue, you could pull it off, there is some kid who is always licking me in my class and he says it is because he can't control his tongue anymore ever since he accidentally pulled it off in a fight and had to have it reattached.

    Liz

     
  • At 4:53 PM, Blogger April Patterson said…

    nope, the 4 primary tastes r sweetness, bitterness, sourness, and saltiness. whether u r vegetarian or not. u 2 r such goofs!

    apes

     
  • At 7:39 PM, Anonymous michael patterson said…

    Elizabeth,

    Slightly older little sis. The taste testing, eh? After mom bought food for the taste testing from the 4 main groups, then she said that since she produced and created the food from the grocery, she should administer the test because she puts the “pro” in procreation.

    As it turns out my son’s tongue is fine and given enough time he could identify all the foods lathered onto his tongue. The problem was the amount of time. It could be anywhere from 5-10 minutes for him to say, “Greasy hamburger” vs. “Rubber ball” or “Closet Tack”. However, it should be pointed out that mom seemed to have the same difficulty. She had eaten close to 30 butter tarts before she said, “Butter tart.” I think she and my son have bonded over their mutual delayed reaction.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     
  • At 11:46 PM, Anonymous liz patterson said…

    Ugly Brother,

    I talked to the lady who runs the Special Needs program, she says that delayed tasting is not enough of a problem to get labeled Special Needs, so you need to find another problem with Robin to get him the help he needs, one thing I have noticed is he's always crying, maybe he's depressed, does he hug a stuffed bunny and curl up in bed in a fetal position a lot?, if so, he could be depressed, why don't you ask him?

    Liz

     
  • At 12:54 AM, Anonymous michael patterson said…

    April,

    Formerly little sis. If there is one piece of advise our father gave me which I cherish to this day, it is the advise, “When your wife decides to decorate, that’s when you should evacuate.” I truly did not realize the degree to which this was true until we got into our new house. I swear to you, April, that my daughter and son’s previously combined bedroom changed decorations so often, sometimes I couldn’t even tell if my son’s crib was in the room. There would be shelves behind the bed or not. There would be shelves to the side of the bed or the crib. The picture on the wall behind the bed changed regularly.

    Once I decided that my son needed a room all to his own, my wife went into a frenzy of redecorating and did not even let my son go into the room until she was completely done. She even placed his name on the door in big letters, so he would not be confused about which bedroom was his (which was a problem in the past, as you may well remember from the time you woke up with him in your former room, the rec room).

    On the day of the grand entrance, my wife, the lovely Deanna, pushed him forth by his shoulders and said, “Go in, Robin! You have your own room now. …Your own private space!” On this first day in, my wife had opted for the shelves behind the bed and the menagerie of stuff animals lining the top of the shelf, in front of the picture mounted on the wall, which changed every time you looked at it. My wife loves those kinds of pictures. Me personally, constantly changing pictures makes me a little nervous, like you get around an inconsistent artist.

    My wife was fishing for compliments and said to my son, “Isn’t this cozy?” while forgetting he was not a 60-year-old woman, but a 3-year-old boy. Then she said, “Why don’t you try the bed on for size!” which was another odd statement since this was my daughter’s former bed and my son had slept there just a few weeks ago. Sometimes when Deanna gets into a decorating mood, she loses her ability to speak sensibly and coherently. I have to remember this particular aspect of my wife, especially when she says things like, “Mike, why don’t you get a big hammer and remove this wall!”

    Well, my son laid in the middle of my daughter’s old bed, and according my wife, did a fair impression of someone being crucified, even including the awkward positioning of his body and the pained expression on his face. Then my wife said that he sat up and stared at the ceiling fan, as if he hadn’t seen that in the room before. Now that I think about it, I don’t remember a ceiling fan in that room either.

    According to Deanna, after my son sat in peaceful contemplation, he told her, “The bed fits, but there’s too much room in the room.” I tell you, formerly little sis, when Deanna told me that was what he said, it almost brought tears to my eyes. My son is truly embracing what it means to be a Patterson. He just got a big, new room all to himself; and he has found a way to allow himself to suffer while he is in it. It brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it. You know, a man tries and tries to be a good father and to show his children the way of life required for being a Patterson. There is nothing so gratifying as to see all that time pay off, in just the few small words of a child.

    Love,
    Michael Patterson

     

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