For a year and a half, I have shared the epic saga of raising my son and daughter. Although it is, in fact, my life, I sometimes cannot help feeling as if someday as teenagers, they will ask me to please stop reading tales of them smearing poo on their own faces and blowing baby-food bubbles out loud to their boyfriends and girlfriends. With that in mind, I thought it only fair for them to have a voice in this fine publication, and since I’m very preoccupied this week with smearing warpaint all over my face for finals, I felt it was a perfect opportunity for the Twins to allow their voices to be heard–to finally tell THEIR story, to set the record straight once and for all.
They’re not usually allowed to use Daddy’s laptop because Daddy is familiar with their innovative flair for breaking things in new and unanticipated ways, and is certain they will someday figure out how to flush it down the toilet or fling it across the living room with a catapult fashioned from an Elmo chair, wiffle bat, and blankie. And so you can probably imagine their eyes lighting up when I sat it down in front of them on the ottoman with a blank Word document open.
“Go ahead,” I told them. “It’s okay. Write a guest post for Daddy’s blog. Daddy’s busy studying this week.”
Gleeful giggles and the pecking of keys filled the room as the Twins collaborated on their first ever written composition. You should have seen the passion they exhibited, especially when I picked up the laptop, which triggered a loud protest, as if to say, “You’re stifling our creativity, Daddy! It’s not ready yet! We’re still developing its theme, and the dialogue still doesn’t quite sound true to life yet!” However, it was bathtime, and we couldn’t take Daddy’s computer in the bathtub.
I later realized they had not yet given their work a title, so I asked them if they had any ideas. “What do you want to call your guest post, kids?”
My daughter spoke, “Jingo Bezz.”
“Baby, there’s already a song called ‘Jingle Bells.’ Do you have any other ideas, like maybe a play on words or a pun?”
“Jingo Bezz! Jingo Bezz!”
My son nodded pensively in agreement. “Jingo Bezz.”
“All right, kids. ‘Jingo Bezz’ it is. All the way.”
I do realize they had plans to edit their work further, but upon reviewing it, both Mommy and I were astounded by its complexity, its depth, and have no doubt in our minds that we are raising two future New York Times Best-Selling Authors.
And so, without further ado, Twinfamy is proud to present “Jingo Bezz,” The Pseudonymous Twins’ much-unanticipated writing debut. Enjoy:
“Did you see that link I sent you today?” my wife inquired, placing a bottle of freshly-pumped breast milk in the fridge.
I looked up from the boob-funnels I was washing in the sink as bewildered as the seventh graders I’d stumped similarly all day, searching my exhausted mind for the answer. At four months old, the Twins were still rarely allowing us more than three hours of continuous slumber, making us bumbling idiots more often than not.
“I’m sorry, which link? Remind me.” Having vaguely drawn the line between today and other days in my sluggish mind, I could now narrow the possibilities to 3-4 links, as my wife sends me multitudes of information daily, ranging from infinitely fascinating to a notch above “waste of time,” but much more often the former.
“That stay-at-home dad article. From the newspaper.”
“Oh, right, that one. Yeah, I did.” Since our recent decision for me to quit teaching for stay-at-home fathering and Ph.D.-ing, my wife had taken to sending me SAHD resources during the workday, partly to show me there were lots of dads in my situation and partly (as I learned months later) because she was secretly terrified of me being in charge and was covertly boot-camping me up to snuff. This particular article was one of countless SAHD-penned rants about how when out in public during work hours, people don’t often understand why the kids are with their father, asking such intelligent questions as “Are you on vacation?”, “Where’s their mother?”, and even “Did you lose your job?”
“What’d you think?” my wife prodded.
“I don’t know. It was all right.” I gently adjusted the Baby Bjorn strap so as not to wake the napping son ornament on my chest. “I guess it was kind of funny, but not all that different from stuff already out there.”
“True,” she overemphasized, and fell silent.
Huh. That was weird. Where’s she going with this?
“You know,” she continued. “You could do better.”
My eyes still bleary despite a shower and the coffee I was nursing between snips, I zeroed in on the kitchen shear blades as I sliced strawberries for the Twins’ breakfast. A momentary lapse in concentration could end in a crimson sprinkle even harder to clean off our idiotically-stark-white kitchen counters than the strawberries themselves. (No, we did not choose this color scheme, nor do we own this house, so until this fine publication makes me a kajillionaire, we keep plenty of Magic Erasers on hand.)
We’ve just discovered this scissor method, as opposed to the standard knife approach. When you have to cut up food for two one-year-old mouths as often as we do, you’re willing to try just about anything to avoid the monotony of hacking at a plate-full of adult-sized food for what feels like half an hour. Initially, my wife raved about the new method, claiming, “This is awesome! I don’t hate it that much!”
Sadly, the novelty has worn off, and shearing food is now just about as fun as knifing it, but with the added thrill of increased-finger-loss likelihood. Still, I wasn’t feeling very knifey on this particular morning, so I went with the novel annoyance rather than the mounting one.