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"My Knee Hurts"
posted October 18, 2013 @8:09p
There’s an episode of Seinfeld in which Jerry finally decides to buy a new couch. The delivery guys do all the heavy lifting – they get the couch upstairs and into the apartment, and move the old couch out. After the guys are finished – worn out and exhausted - they leave. As the door closes behind them, Kramer asks Jerry, “Did you offer those guys a drink?”

Jerry says, “Uh… no. Should I have?”

Kramer’s a bit astonished, “What kind of a person are you?”

Jerry hesitates.

“I don’t know.”

That’s a bit what it feels like for me, being a dad. Am I doing the right things? Am I making wise decisions? Will I ever again feel rested?

I don’t know.

But I do know this: if I had any coolness before, it’s definitely long gone.

I’ve got two examples, and the first is in regards to how I enter and leave a room. Before Parker was born, when I greeted people, I may give a slick little head-nod , saying, “How’s it going.” Or point and say, “Hey there.” Now?

I stick my hand in the air, wide open, with palm facing forward, waving my hand vigorously, “Hi! Hi, everybody!”

It’s the same with leaving.

“Bye, everybody!”

I may as well say, “I’m goofy! I’m goofy, everybody! Look at me, I am an idiot!”

The other is just an example of attempting to be a grown-up.

A couple days ago, I took my daughter to the park at lunchtime, just her and I. As we were walking around the pond at the park, pointing and talking to the ducks, something stung my knee. A yellow jacket? A hornet?

I have no idea, but it hurt like I was stung by a jack hammer. A jack hammer covered with poison.

After performing a wild interpretive dance for onlookers, slapping, smacking, and punching my knee with as much force as possible (yes, it’s bruised), we ran for it, and made our way across the road to a playground. But then I thought, “Am I allergic to bee stings? What if something happens, and my head swells up like a beach ball? And what if I faint? And my toddler wanders off to be raised by pond ducks?”

I figured I had to do something. A grown-up would be prepared, right?

So I did what any idiot would do. I approached a set of nearby parents. I stood there for a moment, silent… then said, “Something just stung me in the knee. It really lit me up… maybe a yellow jacket.”

No response.

“I’m not sure if I’m allergic or not.”

No response.

“So… if you see me fall down or convulse or something – and I need emergency care – that’s what happened to me: I was stung by something.”

No response.

I may not know what kind of a dad I am, but I AM aware of my place in the world.

So please, a little respect. For I am Dad, lord of the idiots!


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