Posts Tagged ‘
Sunday, May 19th, 2013
2 years, 6 months.
Twenty years ago in 1993, as a 12 year-old boy, I got to see Jurassic Park in the movie theater with my dad. It was the most life-like experience I’ve ever had in regards to believing I was actually seeing real dinosaurs.
As for you, your version of that happened last weekend when Mommy and I took you to the Nashville Zoo. You finally got to meet a real “dinosaur,” as promised. (An iguana, to be exact.)
Though you enjoyed finally getting to see one, as promised and hyped up, you told me your favorite animal was actually, of all exotic things, the turtle.
(Maybe it’s because our last name is Shell and turtles have a shell?)
You brought a red lowrider truck with you as your companion.
Somehow, from the beginning of our zoo visit, you assumed that in order for the thing to be legitimate or official, you were obligated for each zoo animal to see your truck.
It was like getting your passport stamped. You had to have each new animal hear your offer to play with them.
Impressively, we ended up seeing every animal in the entire zoo in an hour and 25 minutes. Your concept of going to the zoo is like mine of going shopping: Get in, get it, get out!
But of course, along the way, you did have time to unintentionally (?) heckle the zoo animals:
“Hey Tiger! I ride you?”
“Hey Meerkat! Wanna play with my red truck?”
Fortunately, you never seemed too bummed out when the animals stared in the other direction while you sincerely tried to befriend them.
Oh well, we ended up buying a family season pass to the zoo, so this wasn’t your only chance to befriend the (hopefully) enchanted creatures of the forest.
Most importantly, you still believe that dinosaurs are alive and well.
I care less about you losing faith in Santa Claus or the Easter Bunny.
Or even Mickey Mouse.
But if you still believe that dinosaurs exist, I believe I can assist in keeping your childhood wonder alive even longer.
Randomly enough, the zoo helps with that.
P.S. To see more pictures of your recent visit to the zoo, go to The Dadabase Facebook page and click on the picture folder, Zoo and Baseball 2013.
Add a Comment
Thursday, May 9th, 2013
2 years, 5 months.
If weather permits, Mommy and I are taking you to the zoo this weekend.
However, I think you’ve made some assumptions about what will be on exhibit there.
As I walked you into school this morning, you couldn’t hold in the excitement:
“We see dinosaurs at the zoo!”
It was at that moment this occurred to me: You have no idea that dinosaurs haven’t existed on this Earth in a very long time.
Really though, why would you not think dinosaurs are still around?
After all, I just bought you a plastic T-Rex to wrestle your monster trucks. Therefore, you have assumed that dinosaurs and monster trucks are age-old rivals.
It doesn’t help that over the weekend you watched an episode of Transformers: Rescue Bots, as well as the 1981 animated Spider-Man series, where the plot involved dinosaurs coming to life in modern day, causing chaos and therefore invoking the help of the good guys to save everyone.
When your teacher, Ms. Lauren, asked you what else besides dinosaurs you are excited to see at the zoo this weekend, you quickly responded: “Trucks. Fire trucks.”
Son, this may be a very disappointing visit to the zoo. Hopefully, I can pass off the iguanas as “baby dinosaurs.”
It’s just that I feel compelled to protect your belief in dinosaurs. I kind of don’t want you to find out the truth about them.
So that’s what will happen. I will encourage and build up your version of reality where dinosaurs are still alive in the world. Because honestly, that sounds like a pretty cool version of reality. Who am I to mess that up for you right now?
Add a Comment
Tuesday, June 26th, 2012
Jack has recently acquired a farm/zoo. And boy is he proud to take care of his Made in China plastic toys. I mean, his furry little friends.
This past weekend at his cousin Calla’s house, Jack discovered a “Farm Animal Play Set” my sister and her husband had bought on clearance for 3 bucks at Target. The set consists of a clear backpack filled with many familiar animals.
Why exactly the “farm” set included a mother and baby ostrich as well as a wolf, I don’t know.
Nor could I tell you why there is a random African-looking tree along with two logs. How certain things made the cut remains a mystery.
Not to mention that the “baby” animals are simply miniatures blended in from some leftover batch from Taiwan; clearly not originally intended to be in relation to the “mother” animals, which for some reason all have red eyes.
Needless to say, I named the dog with red eyes, Cujo.
And I couldn’t help but notice the adult duck is nearly the size of the adult ostrich.
One more thing, the larger sized animals were glued together; you can clearly see where the cow’s head was glued on to the rest of its body. (I have seen these exact ones sold separately at Michael’s for like 2 bucks a piece.)
Well, I shouldn’t have been surprised that Jack is completely unaware of just how “Frankensteined” his mismatched farm set is. All he knows is, he loves his animals.
Don’t all kids?
Jack has to be holding 3 of his animals at all times: in the car, in bed, during meals, even while running from me as I chase him across the house during playtime.
Yesterday when he saw that the dishwasher was empty, he grabbed the utensil caddy and carried it over to the coffee table. Then he carefully placed the mutant duck and Cujo in their own separate compartments.
He waited a few seconds and stared at the wall, as to symbolize the passing of several hours. Finally, he woke up the animals and removed them from the utensil caddy, I mean, their stalls: The plastic rooster had apparently crowed.
Kids love animals. Heck, they’re obsessed with them.
Take a look through your child’s favorite books or check out the covers of their favorite DVD’s. Humans are rare. Instead, talking animals have replaced us.
To a toddler, animals are something to be enthralled by.
Animals look funny, they have their own strange movements, they make weird distinct noises, and they’re lovable; except for the ones that are vicious and deadly; but in a child’s world, they by default are all enchanted.
(Have you noticed how many friendly lions and alligators are featured on your little boy’s shirts? I have. It’s pretty funny.)
I’m not the kind of guy to use the word “sweet” in the emotional sense, but I have to admit, it makes my heart smile to see him so earnestly trying to care for the needs of his animals.
You’ve already heard about Jack hosing down Cujo and Mutant Duck. (They must be his favorites.)
Well, now you know that his animals are a full-time responsibility.
They must not only be cleaned, but also fed and given a good night’s rest in their stalls. As long as the dishwasher isn’t full.
For more pictures of Jack with his animals, visit The Dadabase’s Facebook and click on the photo album, Jack’s Farm/Zoo.
Add a Comment
Saturday, December 3rd, 2011
With good reason, I’ve never been able to legitimately process the double standard of leading a child to believe in Santa Claus while at the same time teaching them not to lie.
It’s interesting how far we have had to stretch the lies, just like with any outrageous falsehood, in order to keep kids believing.
“How does Santa fit down the chimney? How does he fit all the toys in his sleigh? How does he travel the whole world overnight?”
(Insert ridiculous answers here.)
Yes, the legend of Santa Claus was born of Christian folklore, so as a predominately Christian nation, we can rest assured knowing that jolly ole St. Nick has accepted Jesus Christ as his personal Lord and Savior. He has been confirmed, baptized, and even has a tattoo of John 3:16 on his arm.
Yet we can’t deny that in the way John Lennon once infamously claimed that the Beatles were bigger than Jesus, the fame of Santa arguably is greater than the actual reason Christmas came to be celebrated in the first place: the birth of Jesus as the prophesied Messiah of the Old Testament.
But can we really get caught up in this particular double standard? Aren’t there other white lies we tell our kids to either A) comfort them or B) entertain them? Yup.
A very traditional white lie I’ve heard parents tell their kids is that when a loved one dies, in particular a grandparent, that person becomes an angel who watches over them in Heaven.
Sorry, the Bible doesn’t say that. I don’t know of any popular religion that actually does.
Besides, what does that even mean? How does Grandpa Murphy “watch over” your kid? Does he part the clouds, look down and see little Jaxon about to run over a stick while riding his bike, so Grandpa sends a few of his buddy angels to kick the stick out of the way just in time, saving Jaxon from crashing his bike?
Sure, the Bible says that there are guardian angels, but we don’t actually become them ourselves after entering Heaven. So it’s a white lie.
It’s a similar thing when a beloved pet dies. Yeah, all dogs go to Heaven, just like that movie that came out when I was in 2nd grade. Cats? Yeah, them too. The goldfish? That’s debatable. Now, let’s stop asking so many questions and finish eating this delicious Hamburger Helper dinner.
Don’t worry, we “helped” that cow go to Heaven quicker and meet all his cow family that were part of those burgers we grilled out last weekend.
Image: Traditional Santa Clause via Shutterstock.
Want to read more on the subject? Today I am giving away a copy of the new book, Christmas is Not Your Birthday, to one lucky and curious reader. The book’s author, Mike Slaughter, is the lead pastor of Ginghamsburg United Methodist Church in Tipp City, Ohio.
Through his church’s annual Christmas Miracle Offering, over $5 million has been raised for humanitarian relief in Darfur. If you ask me, this guy sounds like a real life Santa Claus. Not one that gives toys to kids, but instead someone who helps keep them from dying.
Just be the first person to A) leave a comment on this post saying you want it and B) send me an email including your mailing address to firstname.lastname@example.org
Add a Comment
American, animals, Christianity, Christmas, church, eating animals, Heaven, pets, Santa Claus | Categories:
Deep Thoughts, Must Read, Nostalgia, Spirituality, The Dadabase
Tuesday, August 30th, 2011
Ever since he was born last November, Jack has never been afraid of anything. In fact, things that should scare him to the point of crying are actually the things that make him laugh. On the other hand, when people try to make him laugh by being silly, he just sort of gives a blank stare, as if to say, “What? That’s all ya got?”.
Just to be clear on what doesn’t scare Jack, I often speak to him in my Freddy Krueger voice while making my Freddy Krueger face, saying things like, “How’s this for fine dining?” while feeding him his bottle. Or during playtime and he’s crawling on the floor I’ll chase him while crawling myself, again in Freddy Krueger mode: “Come here, son. I eat babies for breakfast!”. And he grunts with delight.
One particularly fun and unsafe game I play with Jack is when I throw a thin blanket over him. As he tries to remove it, waving his arms, he looks like a generic ghost from Scooby Doo. It usually only takes a few seconds for him to reappear and as soon as he does, he’s always laughing.
With that being said, we finally found something that scares Jack. Recently we ate at a restaurant meeting some friends for breakfast. Oddly enough, the place we ate was adjoined to a PetCo pet store. So we decided to check out the live animals for some Saturday morning entertainment.
Jack loved the dogs, birds, fish, and even the smelly weasels- or were they ferrets?
But on our way out the door, we realized we had totally missed the cats when we had entered the PetCo. As I held Jack in my arms, walking closer to the caged cats that happened to be at Jack’s eye level, he started crying a different kind of cry than I am used to hearing from him. It wasn’t “I’m hungry” or “I’m tired.” Instead, it was the rare “I’m scared! Get me out of here!”.
In particular, there was a black cat with green eyes that started creeping toward Jack. Though in a cage, it really freaked him out. To be fair, the cat truly was a bit creepy; all panther-like and whatnot.
The fearless and adventurous Indiana Jones was known for being terrified of snakes. Looks like the equally daring Jack has found his weakness in the feline form.
Add a Comment
*These pictures were taken at a random mini-amusement park in Lodi, California; the same city that was featured in the 1969 song “Lodi” by Creedence Clearwater Revival, containing the lyrics, “stuck in ole Lodi again.”
1969, animals, baby blog, California, Creedence Clearwater Revival, daddy blog, fear, Freddy Krueger, funny, Indiana Jones, Lodi, PetCo, pets, Scooby Doo | Categories:
Growing Up, Nostalgia, Storytelling