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Beer & Junk - Adventures In Parenting

November 26, 2013
by Kelly Bay , Emmetsburg News

If you happen to be in your late twenties, sitting around a campfire and discussing the good old days of college, it is inevitable that the conversation will turn to the subject of whose roommate/friend/boyfriend confused the oddest location with a bathroom after having a few too many beverages. I used to live for these conversations. I have a handful of the best stories ever told on this subject, and would find myself almost squirming in my seat waiting for my turn to share. I knew that one or even two of these stories, well told, would automatically make me the funniest person in the room. Unfortunately, I learned the hard way that sharing all of them at once, the words spilling from my mouth without so much as taking a breath- "in the top drawer of the dresser, shorted out the computer wiring, behind the tv, in the closet, sitting in the refrigerator, on the neighbors couch"- simply turned me into the weirdo who was only friends with alcoholics.

The same has become true of sharing the funny things my son says about his two favorite subjects: beer and "his junk". Telling how he stood studying the pop machine in the crowded faculty lounge at the high school, before confusedly asking, "Hey, where is the beer?", or about the time at a friend's baby shower when he stopped playing catch with another little girl to yell (just as the rest of the room fell quiet of course), "Hey, don't throw it at my junk!" is always met with laughter. Adding on the story about the day he proudly announced, "Tomorrow I have to tell my teacher that I like beer and can wipe my own butt!" or when he assured all of the grandparents at dinner that he was prepared for a monster invasion, "I will punch them in the face and the penis!", and the situation gets a little uncomfortable. And if I don't shut my mouth immediately after that, I've pretty much ruined our chances of ever getting invited to another birthday party or block gathering.

Fortunately, I've learned my lesson. If I carefully ration these stories over the next several years we should be able to maintain the exceptionally limited social life we've become accustomed to; and hopefully avoid some anonymous phone calls to social services along the way. Or maybe not. After all, the youngest two have yet to master the English language.



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