I’m constantly trying to talk my wife into downsizing, into getting some of this stuff out of the house instead of hauling it in. It seems all we do is unbox stuff that we may or may not really need. Especially since the baby, we have accumulated so much crap. We don’t need all of this stuff, I tell her after reading about a family of 4 living in a 68 square foot treehouse. But she doesn't listen, and for the life of me I don't know why. Our house hasn’t been clean in nine months, and all this junk doesn't help. I try another angle, We need to simplify our lifestyle!! I yell during a commercial break of a feature on Amish lifestyles on 60 minutes. Again nothing..
In all seriousness, we do need to comb through our belongings, sort out the necessities. But with a wife who collects scarves like a snowman museum curator, then of course the two dogs, stupid cat, and let's not forget the newest member of our household, Mr. Two of Everything, it's easy to see that I'm fighting a losing battle.
Because I'm honest, I'll even admit that I'm not completely without blame. The other day I was given the simple task of buying a replacement diaper genie (yes, I’m aware of how utterly domestic my life has become). Walking through the store I stopped—as do all adults—and made a beeline for a display of basketballs.
I was testing the air in one of the balls, just a few dribbles, when I caught a disapproving glare from the store employee. And that’s when I spotted a little piece of magic in the form of a plastic toy basketball goal. It seems the diaper genie had granted my wish.
After some thought (would I still want this in the morning? Yep), I grabbed the box, snatched the diaper genie and made my way to the register. Waiting in line, I smiled to myself at my wise decision. At $25, this little contraption could theoretically lead to a college scholarship. It was my first executive parenting decision, and I was feeling pretty good about it.
Arriving home, I presented my wife with the boring old pamper bucket. And then, unable to contain my goofy dad grin, I presented the basketball goal.
“Seriously? He just started crawling."
I’d anticipated this antiquated line of thinking and launched into my presentation. Fearing a veto,I handed her a PowerPoint presentation, referred to statistics I’d invented, and talked endlessly about the benefits of hand eye coordination. I tore into the box like Christmas morning, handing the ball to my son—which he promptly ate. Unperturbed, I assembled the goal with hoop dreams dancing in my head. I hung the net and, swish, christened it with a turn around jumper from the dinner table. Yeah, my wife is going to love this.
So what if the box says 1.5 to 5 years old? My son will be 9 months old soon, and once he quits crapping himself he'll be ready for the big time. Besides, we’ve got our work cut out for us if we want to compete with that Titus kid. But no pressure, if he doesn’t care for it, I suppose I’ll find something to do with it.