I’m just going to come out and say it — little kids are weird. They say, literally, whatever is on their minds. I’m convinced they’re all speed freaks (who has the much energy otherwise) and they all vaguely smell of milk that’s about to go bad.
Yeah, this is about kids. Or one kid anyway. One 6-year-old boy.
I don’t have kids and my exposure to any kid is somewhat limited. OK, it’s really limited. Limited to the occasional kid brought to the office because of some unforeseen babysitter crisis or limited to social function.
I don’t see or interact with a lot of kids.
Thus, weekends at my house are pretty damned chilled out. Maybe a trip into town, the German sauna one weekend a month and followed by a lot of glorious — and I do consider it glorious — lounging about. We’ve been in Germany a long time. The desire to walk up to Baron Batshit’s (and they were all bat shit) castle is reserved for visiting house guests.
My weekends consist of reading, television, maybe a little nap, some light house work and just relaxing. Besides it’s winter. Who the hell wants to go outside anyway (you skiers, snowboarders and other outdoor freaks scare the hell out of me, its cold out there)?
So, as you’ve already guessed, my plan for another Sunday afternoon of reading, watching political talk shows and napping was disturbed, nay destroyed, by the introduction of Tyler, a 6-year-old pirate fighting, helicopter crashing meth head.
1. Six year olds are insane, or maybe not.
If doing the same thing and expecting a different result is the definition of insanity then I have to ask this question: What is doing the same thing over and over and over again and still laughing at the result the definition of? Yeah, I know, a six year old.
Tyler has a remote control helicopter which I have to admit is the coolest thing I have seen since I was 8 years old and got the bionic man with the telescope eye and power arm thing.
The helicopter is modeled after the Apache helicopter and even has little rockets mounted to it that, sadly, don’t work (count yourself lucky cat!).
As Tyler proudly pointed out it even really, no kidding, “Watch this Todd, watch this Todd” — flew.
Right into the ceiling.
You’d have to have a house made of paper for this toy to actually damage anything, so the first time when it crashed to the ground like a giant wounded dragonfly I kind of laughed too.
I righted the helicopter and, BAM, Tyler flew it right back into the ceiling. This, like the first crash, was met with maniacal laughter by the pilot, Warrant Officer Tyler.
The laughing and crashing went on for every single flight.
Finally, it was my turn. BAM! I flew it right into the ceiling and Tyler erupted into the same maniacal laughter. By the second or third try I was able to make it hover and not crash. I was proud of myself. Easy on the gas, watch the yoke and whatever else it is helicopter pilots do outside of being pompous. I gave the helicopter back to Tyler, this time with some advice on how to not fly straight into the ceiling.
He had none of it. Straight back, he sent it, to a fiery death for pilot and gunner.
“You do the voice Todd,” he said.
“The pilot voice.”
My declarations of “Prepare for takeoff. OK, something’s wrong. OH GOD WE’RE GOING TO DIE, AHHHHHHHHHHH,” only added to Tyler’s near-pants wetting laughter.
This never became less funny to him. Even when the batteries died and after he had to wait an hour for the recharge, on the first run, the helicopter was again crashed into the ceiling. And Tyler cackled maniacally.
Every. Time. Straight. Into. The. Ceiling. Never, not once, less funny. Same evil laugh.
I think I’m actually a little jealous here. If I found the same exact joke funny, over and over I’d save a lot of money on DVDs and crap. Oh wait, I do have that, it’s called the Simpsons.
2. Playing pirates sucks. Don’t bring a knife to a gun fight and playing pirates sucks.
“OK, we’re going to play pirates,” Tyler said dumping a bag of crap on the ground. I see a mixture of plastic swords, a toy gun and what looks like a really badly made dead raccoon. Turns out the dead raccoon is Tyler’s pirate hat. Apart from the about-to-go- bad milk smell, there was no smell from the raccoon, thankfully.
I haven’t seen Pirates of the Caribbean since the first one came out and I’m pretty sure Dagmar and I were drunk when we did see it. To me Johnny Depp is still Edward Scissorhands (the chick I saw it with in high school wouldn’t make out with me).
As Tyler dumps out his bag of tricks, I’m trying to read my Kindle (which Tyler is really pissed off doesn’t have a touch screen — as evidenced by his constant finger swiping across the screen). I’m about to discover that Kindle reading is off the table for the time being.
He hands me a d0-rag, the kind office-cleaning crews or prison inmates wear, you know, to denote gang affiliation or who gets top bunk (I haven’t been to prison, yet.)
Do-rag upon my head, dead ferret upon Tyler’s head, I am handed a sword. Tyler has a sword and a pistol. I point out the fact that this is not how I wish to start our “pirate fight.” He hands me a hand-drawn ninja star that, when thrown, lands on my foot.
“OK, come get me,” Tyler says. I had not considered this. I felt reasonably sure we could “pirate fight” with my ass firmly planted on the couch.
“Nope,” I reply, “I’m going to fight you from right here.” In my defense I said this waving the sword back and forth.
“Todd, you have to get up and come fight me.”
“Nope, I’m not going to.” This is my house and I’m not doing anything I don’t want to do. Unless Dagmar tells me I’m going to do it, I mean.
“If you don’t,” and here’s where a 6-year-old makes a critical mistake, “I’m going to put the pirate stuff away.” I’m laughing (on the inside) because this is something you’re mom has obviously told you and you’re not my mom. I’ve won right? If you and I, two grownups, just had this conversation, I’d have just gotten exactly what I wanted. I’d have won the debate. Not so.
“OK, cool,” I say, and remove the do-rag. Dagmar launches into some tirade about “responsibility” and “being nice.” These are not Sunday afternoon words in our house. Normally on a Sunday afternoon there are a lot of please, thank you and can I, heard here. Dagmar talks too sometimes.
A 6-year-old just outsmarted me. Most of you know that’s not hard but, mind you, this is stone-cold sober. As anyone who reads my posts on the Facebook feed knows, (and if WordPress is right, that’s all of you) after eight or so beers I have very little filter. Need I remind anyone of the “name my left testicle contest?”
I thought not.
What can I say, I got up and played “pirate fight.” I can tell you, Tyler has “armor” everywhere and that I have no “armor” anywhere. He has a magical doctor who, regardless of the HMO costs or clauses, fixes sword wounds really fast and paper ninja stars don’t really ever work.
Oh yeah, one final thing, 6-year-olds have no issue with sucker punches, and those plastics swords, with a good wind up they hurt like hell.
3. That bottomless pit we’ve all heard about? It’s a 6-year-olds’ appetite.
One hour and three welts into the babysitting adventure, Tyler announced, wisely to Dagmar, that he was hungry. Tyler’s mom had brought with her two packages of chicken Ramen (his favorite, which you must say as “ramen noodles,” – I was corrected several times about this) and a bag of cookie things called, “Scooby Snacks,” and not the kind the Fun Lovin’ Criminal’s sang about, sadly.
Shortly after making chick … I mean ramen noodles, Dagmar went for a run. I do find it oddly suspicious that she started running only the day before (conspiracy theory, Dagmar giggled during the whole run). After finishing the bowl, Tyler wanted more.
Are you sure, I asked. He was. OK, I made more, he ate them all. Less than three pirate sword fights later his mom arrived to pick him up, but before leaving with him she opted for a glass (bottle) of wine. Tyler ate his third bowl of ramen chicken noodles (my ramen noodles, from my own private stash I might add).
Three packs of salty, vaguely chicken-flavored soup stuff. He’s like 50lbs wet, what the hell.
Then, I was sent to the local pizza parlor for a small cheese and a large grown up pizza. German standards not being up to our American girth, this was not enough and I was sent back for more. The German pizza parlor owner is not shocked when Americans come back 20 minutes later for more pizza (what do I care, they serve beer there). I returned home with ANOTHER round of pizzas. Tyler didn’t finish this second pizza but did put a dent in it that equaled exactly half of the second pizza.
All of this food is in the span of literally five pirate sword fights (five pirate sword fights = three hours adult time, by standard imperial measurement, Google it).