Snappy comebacks…

October 15, 2008
On the way home from work tonight I started thinking about what I could post that would actually benefit couples who do not have the years of parenting experience that I have enjoyed.  Having sifted through the numerous possibilities, I decided to provide you (the new parent) with some basic but snappy parent comebacks.  More than likely you will use some variation of the responses that I am about to provide throughout your parenting careers.  So here it goes- how to answer/comeback from some of the questions/concerns you will face as a parent.
1.  Offspring- “Dad/Mom, I have nothing to do. I am bored.”

reply- “I got it! How about you mow the lawn, clean your room, fold laundry, repave the driveway and then rotate the tires on the mini-van? Or you could just play quietly for the next 30 minutes while I finish balancing the checkbook.”

2.  Offspring- “Can I ride my bike around the block?”

Translation: “Can I weave dangerously in and out of traffic on my bike, which I can barely manage to control, to an undisclosed location far from the prying eyes of you and mom and act like a I was raised by a pack of wolves?”

reply- “Absolutely, but first I need you to undo the mass of knots you created in your school shoe laces and then weave a basket large enough to hold the heap of toys that are sprawled across our living room.”

3.  Offspring- “Can I have a soda?”

reply- “I am all out of soda, son, why don’t you siphon the fuel out of the weed whacker instead, it has about the same nutritional value and I don’t have to travel to the store to get it.”

4. Offspring- “Can Billy (names have been changed to protect the innocent) come over to play Dad?”

reply- I don’t think so, son, your teacher called before you got home from school today and said that Billy’s probation officer revoked his play date privileges until he completes his community service obligation.”

5.  Offspring- “I am asking Santa for a real dirt bike.”

reply- “Don’t count on him bringing you one buddy, the elves are being sued for union violations.  Seems the motors they’re making in their engine plant are trademarked by GM and as a result of their irresponsible behavior several hundred of your closest friends are being laid off. Damn elves.”

6. Offspring- “I’m not doing my homework tonight!”

reply- “No kidding? Well I’m fine with your decision, just let me write a note to your teacher explaining that you would rather be unemployed, homeless and hungry than spend another 5 minutes watching her face flap about social studies.  Man, I hope she doesn’t take this the wrong way; it could really hurt her feelings.”

7.  Dad- “Mack did you lift a $20 out of Mom’s wallet?

Offspring- “No, Dad, honest- I never saw it. No way, not me. Mom’s insane, Dad, she loses money all the time, very irresponsible.You should put her in time out for her lack of accountability.”

reply-  “You know what? You’re right. I’ll talk to Mom, but first let me call the crime lab down at Quantico so they can send up a finger print expert to dust Mom’s purse for fingerprints, they owe me a favor anyway and it should only take about 5 minutes.  Those guys are awesome, I’ll know exactly who took the money and then Wham! Off to jail they go! Mack, why are you crying? Do you have something you want to tell me?”

8. Offspring- “Dad, can we going fishing when you get home from work?”

reply- “Sorry guys the bay is closed for maintenance.  All of the fish have been removed and sent to “Big Ed’s Fish Emporium” for a thorough detailing. I guess your teacher was right, they are trying to clean up the bay.”

9. Offspring- “Can we get a puppy?”

reply- “Can you spell the word ambidextrous? 

Offspring- “No”

reply- “That’s the same answer I was going to use next!”

10.  Offspring- “Dad, is the tooth fairy real?”

reply- “Not anymore, buddy, I accidentally left the bug zapper on last night, nothing left but some wing remnants and scorched dollar bills” (I am only joking I would never say this to my boys, I don’t even own a bug zapper. Fly swatter, yes; bug zapper, no)

Just to clear the air, I am a smart ass, I use and believe in the power of sarcasm.  Luckily, my boys have grown accustomed to my smartassedness and can come back quite quickly with witty responses of their own.  Furthermore, my initial response is rarely my final response; in most instances, I fold like a cheap suit.  If my boys want to do something as a family I rarely say no, because I am well aware that these times are fleeting.

I once had a buddy and his kids over for lunch. As I loaded the kids plates up with chicken nuggets and French fries my friend’s son asked if he could have more ketchup. He already had quite a heap so my buddy told him “No, you have enough”. I quickly countered with “Of course you can, Jimmy, ketchup’s almost free. Chug-a-lug buddy, enjoy”.

When I saw my buddy at work about a week later, he told me that he really admired my “Dadness”. When I asked him why, he said “because ketchup’s almost free”. 

Here is what it means- Try to say yes more often. If you’re about to say no, ask yourself “is someone going to lose an eye if I allow this to happen?”  If not, let it go, ketchup’s almost free.

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Mike posted the following on October 22, 2008 at 7:43 pm.

You, a smart ass? No way!

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