Archive for the 'In-laws’ CD collection' Category

I move to the couch!

October 5, 2010

Andrew Hicks

Week 3 of my ankle-break recovery exile is offering a change of pace. Instead of sitting in bed at my mom’s house all day into the wee hours of the night, I’m sitting on my in-laws’ basement couch all day into the wee hours of the night. It’s 2:23 am right now. Silas is asleep beside me. Ten minutes ago, he was awake. An hour ago, he was asleep. Two hours ago, he was awake. And so on. Awake, asleep, awake, asleep. He’s an indiscriminate, narcoleptic infant.

Really, the only time Silas concretely decides he wants to be awake is when I turn out the light to go to sleep. I can’t decide whether he’s afraid of the dark or is just a jerk. I’m kidding, of course. I’m the jerk, I think. I feel inconvenienced when Silas decides he wants to eat just as I’m getting ready to enjoy my own piping hot food. I mean, can’t the kid wait? He eats all the time. He gets like eight bottles a day. I only get four to five giant meals a day. If I’m lucky.

I’m sending a message by moving my base of operations from the bed to the couch. The message is, I’m not helpless anymore. Okay, I still have food brought to me, and I’m still not doing my own dishes or laundry, and it’ll be a little while before I’m back to work, but I cleaned my room today. And, let me assure you, that’s an accomplishment even when I’m not injured.

After the washcloth bath I gave myself* early afternoon, I brought my dirty clothes back to the bedroom by gripping them in my crutches and tossing them forward a few feet at a time. Takes a little while, isn’t pretty, but achieves results. I liken this process to a dimwit simpleton with a chopstick in each hand, tossing lo mein toward his mouth and occasionally hitting his target. I also managed to make the bed in fifteen minutes flat while hopping on one foot.

I’m even watching both my kids simultaneously again for up to two hours at a time. My best bet with Sarah, almost 2, is to keep her close to me and engaged. We read the same two books four or five times each, and we watch a little Barney** on the DVR. Then I get bored and crack the lid on the laptop, at which point Sarah makes a beeline for the laptop and asks optimistically, “Elmo? Elmo?”

I cruise to Sesamestreet.org and show her an Elmo video, it ends a couple minutes later, and Sarah asks, “More Elmo?” She just learned the word “more” in the last week or so, but she’s 100 percent on top of it. This girl can’t be happy with one of anything. She needs to watch more Elmo while she’s eating more cookies–uh, I mean carrots. More carrots. Lots and lots of carrots. I’m not one of those dads.

If I keep her close by and occupied, there’s no trouble. Couch-bound with a broken ankle, I can still grab my daughter’s legs and lift her upside down above my head, twisting her back and forth and exclaiming, “She’s upside down! Sarah’s upside down!” while she laughs and squeals her head off. Then I deposit her safely on my chest, and she says, “More! More!” And I oblige her. Being a dad has its simple, sweet moments.

It’s the idle hands that truly cause problems. If Sarah gets distracted by the stuff in the room, she’s simultaneously meticulous, thorough and unbelievably sloppy about moving every object to somewhere it doesn’t belong. Tonight, she wandered over to the CD tower, grabbed a CD from the rack, walked back over, handed it to me, said “Here you go,” and repeated the process a couple dozen times.

This was the most exhaustive look I’ve had through the music collection of my wife’s parents. Checked out some Glen Campbell, Tony Bennett, the Benedictine Monks Chant album (triple platinum!), the second of Amy Grant’s fifteen Christmas albums*** and lots of Bach. Towards the bottom of the stack are the CDs you can tell my in-laws bought on a foldout merch table at the back of the church directly from the artist. Nice of them. These are the CDs with no bar codes on the back, released by people you’ve never heard of. I wonder when those CDs last made it off the rack for a courtesy listen before Sarah haphazardly yanked them off earlier today.

Time to sign off. Silas is awake again, and he smells poopy. This could be a five-wipe affair.

* = You don’t want to smell me until I can walk again. Chances are, by that point, you will still not want to smell me. But I normally give off a pleasant aroma. I’m still rotating Perry Ellis For Men and Hugo colognes I bought duty-free on my cruise vacations in 2004 and 2005. I don’t see an expiration date anywhere on the bottles, so I’m gonna spray those things until they run out.^

** = It seems like every “Barney” episode lately has one of the little kid dinosaur puppet characters getting mad, then Barney reacts by singing the same cute song about mad LKDPCs. Which, by the end, makes the LKDPC into a happy LKDPC. Sarah loves it. I scratch my head.

*** = She went overboard with the holiday releases, but I love ’80s Amy Grant. I grew up in the church and spent eleven years in Christian school. I’ll still take some “Where Do You Hide Your Heart,” “Find a Way,” “Stay For Awhile,” “Lead Me On,” “Sing Your Praise to the Lord,” “Angels” and “In a Little While” on the Bose headphones any day of the week.

^ = A black lady I worked with once asked me, “Is that you wearing all that cologne?” I eagerly responded back, “Uh huh, it sure is,” thinking she was going to compliment me. She continued, “And I mean, ALL that cologne,” and tossed off an unpleasant nose wrinkle. My wife loves that story. I’d like to think I’ve learned a thing or two about cologne moderation in the eight years since the incident in question.

BABY PICTURE OF THE DAY

Sarah and Silas, both looking at a non-existent camera to their left.

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