Category: Grammar

The Potentially Perilous Piglet/Pluto Party Paint Predicament

I took a deep breath and let it out slowly. After a particularly long morning, the Twins’ 3rd Birthday Party was finally in full swing. Food was served, Piglet and Pluto cupcake towers were constructed, and while kids of all ages darted across the house hopped up on sugar, our adult friends and family tossed back a mimosa or two, occasionally craning their necks to check on their offspring.

Yep, it looked like we just might pull this thing off after all.

Piglet and Pluto birthday cupcakes - Twinfamy

The Twins’ favorite stuffed animals are Piglet and Pluto, so that became our theme.

It figures that on a day meant to be all about them, my son and daughter decided to make the entire morning all about them with constant, unnecessarily melodramatic whining, thus hindering the actual preparation for their party. The plan had been for me to head to the grocery store for a few last-minute food items while my wife stayed home to get things ready, with help from her sister who had graciously volunteered her mad cupcaking skillz. My wife–an überplanner–had dutifully procured party game supplies to be assembled, festive popcorn boxes to be filled with Orville Redenbacher-y goodness, and goodie bags to be distributed to the under-ten crowd. However, as I witnessed the Twins’ heart-wrenching, Oscar-worthy disapproval of changing from their pajamas to their party clothes just before I left, I had a feeling my wife’s überplans had become an endangered species. Sure enough, the moment I re-entered the house with groceries in tow (30 minutes from Go Time), I was met with a frantic Honey-Do-all-of-this-before-I-Hulk-Smash-somebody’s-face List. Despite my deft popcorn-box filling and spirited backyard dog-poo extraction, our guests began to arrive way before we were able to accomplish Operation: Meet The Wife’s Unrealistic Pinterest-Fueled Expectations.

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Moby Dick or The White Whale

Dictwinary #4 – Nap Overlap

Nap O•ver•lap

[NAP O-ver-lap]

proper noun

The rare, sought-after occurrence (especially among stay-at-home parents) of orchestrating all of one’s children to nap simultaneously, awarding the ecstatic parent the opportunity to do whatever he or she desires…at least for a little while. Often punctuated and commemorated with celebratory acts such as Twinfamy’s “Holy Crap, a Nap Overlap” Shuffle.

Gregory Peck as Captain Ahab

A weathered father remains vigilant for a Nap Overlap opportunity.

Due to an unwelcome household visit from the fabled Teething Fairy, the ever-elusive Nap Overlap had now become the stay-at-home father’s White Whale–his obsession–while his tiny first mates alternated between laughing in his exhausted face and wailing along with the Sirens just off the rocky coast.

Moby Dick or The White Whale

This ingested lifeboat symbolizes the father’s shattered hopes of catching 15 minutes of a television show that does not feature singing puppets, eating a lunch that does not come out of a wrapper, or even just zoning out at the wall zombie-style for a few minutes.

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You may also enjoy:

Naptime Musings - My 6 Most Common Thoughts   Captwin's Log - Stay at Home Father Day 1   Dictwinary #3 - Twintrepid

If not, watch out for those Sirens on your way out. They sing a killer rendition of “Bohemian Rhapsody.”

Almost gets me every time.

I always escape singing “Mama mia, let me go.”

Hard Hat Required

Dictwinary #3 – Twintrepid

twin•trep•id

[twin-TREP-id]

adjective

Term pertaining to or describing twins who are particularly fearless, dauntless, or daring, often to their parents’ dismay.

Hard Hat Required

The stay-at-home father sweated through his third t-shirt of the day while chasing his twintrepid six-month-olds as they rolled repeatedly off the blanket in opposite directions towards head-clunkable objects.

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This… is Blogger Idol

A 500-Disc DVD Special Edition Bonus Feature

Blogger Idol

Blogger Idol is a competition similar to American Idol, but based on the premise that “writers are the new rockstars,” so instead of a singing competition, it’s a blogging competition. I’m not in the competition because I’m already everyone’s idol, but my friend John Willey is.

You may recognize him as one of the authors of Who Searched That?, the funny search terms blog I write for. John is a stay-at-home dad like me, and writes an excellent blog about raising his two boys called Daddy’s in Charge?, often including videos starring Legos.

Anyway, John has been so kind as to feature Twinfamy in his Blogger Idol post this week and I’d love for you to go here, read his post, and vote for him. Voting starts NOW and is only open a few days, so if you feel so compelled, please do it soon.

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You may also enjoy:

Dictwinary #2 - Twincident   Dictwinary #1   Naptime Musings - My 6 Most Common Thoughts

If not, please watch your head as you roll away.

Crying in Stereo

Dictwinary #2 – Twincident

twin•ci•dent1

[TWIN-sih-dent]

singular common noun

An occurrence (or incident) involving twins

The twincident of the forgotten pacifiers echoes as loudly in our memory as the tantrums it produced, broadcasted in hi-fi stereo sound throughout the vehicle.

Crying in Stereo

At least it wasn't Dolby 5.1.

Twin•ci•dent2

[TWIN-sih-dent]

singular proper noun

A blog entry on Twinfamy, everyone’s favorite epic-stay-at-home-father-of-twins-parenting-humor-specific publication.

Despite a standing brunch engagement with her estranged biological son who had apparently been raised by a kindly family of Sasquatch, Agatha simply had to stay up late in order to read the latest Twincident.

Open Twinty-Four Hours

Fear not, for Twinfamy is always open, unlike customer service centers and post offices, which intentionally close at times most people would prefer to use their services.

Dictwinary

Dictwinary #1 – Dictwinary

Dic•twin•ar•y

[DIK-twin-air-ee]

singular proper noun

Dictwinary

A compilation of terms involving twins and/or situations brought about while raising them that have been coined (or unknowingly borrowed) and used on Twinfamy, accompanied by their intended meanings, often including puns ranging in cleverness from life-changingly awesome to slightly terrible.

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At first I was afraid (I was petrified) but then, after consulting the Dictwinary, I better understood Twinfamy’s terminology, and gained an even higher level of appreciation of its genius.

Restroom Sign

Twincoherent: A Note on Gender

Restroom Sign

I don’t know which public restroom your child will be using.

As I’ve been preparing more twincidents for your reading pleasure, the Grammatical Terrors of writing with gender in mind have reared their ugly heads, so I figured I’d tackle that now, in Twinfamy’s first few days, before its umbilical cord falls off.

Ahem.

Most babies are either male or female. This is especially helpful (and fun!) when those babies grow up and attempt to make more babies.

However, this two-party system makes it difficult to use personal pronouns when writing about a generic child (and really, all people). In the olden days, when dinosaurs and handlebar mustaches ruled the earth, a then male-dominated society would opt for pronouns with a penis (he, him, his, etc.). Nowadays, many writers exclusively use vaginal pronouns (she, her and… um…her), some overcompensating from the paranoia of being branded a male chauvinist, and others in an effort to make up for the sins of writers before them.

Still others attempt to write in a completely gender-neutral fashion. This can be done by always using the plural form (e.g. they/them) and occasionally crafting sentences that are either grammatically incorrect or slightly awkward, as well as using other generic terms (child, baby, youngster, progeny, offspring, loinfruit, etc.), but this often is just a pacifier’s throw away from referring to a baby as an “it,” which is just offensive. It makes you sound like a Terminator seeking your target and attempting to destroy “it.” Some writers even employ clumsy, multiple-choice eyesores like s/he, him/her, and my personal least favorite, him/herself.

Simply put, writing about singular, hypothetical babies can be a pain in the diaper.

I care about you, O Loyal Reader, and I don’t want you to stumble over such madness. It would anger me if that got in the way of you consuming my genius, in the same way that Mel Gibson would be a half-blue-faced, kilted savage if some dufus in a ten-gallon hat were blocking your view of Lethal Weapon 5.

However, I don’t know which public restroom your child will be using when HE OR SHE grows up (see how lame that is?). You might even have one of each like me, or dare I say some combination involving three or more (and if you do, God bless you). No matter what, I can’t always write in such a way that is pronounically relevant to your exact situation. I’m sorry. Don’t cry. I can wrap you up in your blankie if it’ll make you feel better.

The best way I’ve seen it executed in other parenting texts is by alternating between masculine and feminine forms every other chapter or post, so I’ll do the same here, with the exception of gender-relevant topics, like how to avoid a golden shower while changing your son’s diaper.

Since I have both a girl and boy, I’m already tuned into that balancing act, as evidenced by the equal number of pink and light blue items that have taken over my house. So if it happens that you have a son and I use “she” in a post, I’ll ask you to not assume I’m calling him a sissy, nor am I calling your stunningly beautiful daughter mannish when I use “he.” I’m just trying to keep it even, as I do with my love for my own son and daughter—tied at 100%.

(Yes, I do realize that allocating 100% to each would actually equal 200% of my love, which is technically impossible. Don’t be that guy…or girl.)