|Master of the self-portraits
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It seems like all the blogs I read have had at least one political post in them. I decided early on in my blogging career that I would not be doing one myself. Well, as you can see from the title of this post, it appears that I am a liar. But that actually better qualifies me to do a political post than you. See, since I’m a liar, I’m already *thinking* like a politician.
I think the Gearhart Household would be best suited to be a dictatorship. I would, of course, be dictator. My first order of business would be to require all those in MY household and, therefore, under my direct control, to adress me as Supreme Chancellor.
You: “Why a dictatorship, Joe?”
Me: silence, raised eyebrow
You: *sigh* unamused “Why a dictatorship, Supreme Chancellor?”
A couple reasons come to mind without much forethought. Firstly, because it would be friggin awesome. Excuse me for a moment, while I make a “rock-and-roll” face, stick my tongue out, raise my hand in the air, and extend my pinky and index fingers in the “devil horns” gesture. Secondly and, possibly, more importantly, I don’t think I could win an election against my wife, Sarah.
If it were just the dogs, it would end in a tie vote of 1-1. Logan is a loyal supporter of a Sarah-run house, and Delilah would rabidly endorse yours truly, Chancellor Gearhart. But, it’s not just the dogs any longer. TYLER IS THE SWING VOTE!!!
On December 31, 2007, Sarah had an OB appointment. Our midwife (Michelle) was out with the flu, so the other midwife in the office (Stephanie) filled in. At the end of the appointment she asked us a question that caused my brain to short-circuit.
Stephanie: “Do you want to see if we can find out the sex?”
Sarah: no hesitation “YES!”
Sarah was only 15 weeks pregnant at this point, so we hadn’t expected that question for another 5 weeks. But, the OB office doesn’t charge for ultrasounds, so what did we have to lose? From what I understand, free ultrasounds are both rare and awesome. We wanted to get one at EVERY visit, just to be SURE that our baby was still safe and good. We didn’t though. Since we’re not completely sold on the safety of ultrasounds on a fetus, we only got them when they were recommended (to check for brain measurements, heart functionality, etc). But, we both agreed before Sarah got pregnant that we wanted to know the sex of our baby.
In an instant, my brain started back up and I found my tongue. I echoed Sarah’s excitement and nervousness when I repeated her answer, “Yes!”
During the U/S, my heart jumped multiple times and I thought to myself, “Did I just see a… ?”, but Stephanie didn’t say anything about it. She would only say things like, “and here’s the heart. It looks good.”, “you can see the ribs here.”, “oh, here are the toes.”
The anticipation was KILLING me! I could feel individual strands of hair turning gray on my head. I just wanted to grab her by the shoulders and shake her, screaming, “I DON’T CARE ABOUT THE &@#%ING TOES TODAY!!!”
Finally, and not a moment too soon for her own safety, she said, “well I won’t keep you waiting any longer. I saw what I was looking for a few times already.”
My brain discarded all unnecessary sensory information at this point. My vision focused and narrowed. It was eerily similar to tunnel vision. My hearing sharpened, amplifying only the sounds within thirty-six inches of my ears. A bomb could have gone off in the next room and I wouldn’t have heard it. The only other time my attention was this attuned to a single person was when I was saying my vows to Sarah.
|It’s a boy
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She rotated and slid the ultrasound wand on Sarah’s belly. Somewhere in the back of my head my brain registered the slurping sound of the gel as she did this. An abstract grayscale “W” formed on the screen.
“And this is a penis.” she said as she referenced the middle of the “W”. Our then unnamed baby was showing us, loud and proud, what he was working with. She explained that we were looking at him as if he were sitting on a piece of glass, hence the “W” appearance. His legs formed the upward-pointing ends and his *cough cough* formed the point in the middle. She said she was 97% sure.
Trumpets started blaring in my mind. I thought to myself, “The power has shifted!” Somewhere in the distance – to this day, I couldn’t tell you if it was real or imagined – The Imperial March started playing.
Odds of me becoming Supreme Chancellor just shot through the roof like a rocket. I started mentally preparing my acceptance speech, and thinking about the changes I would make while in office. Sundays would officially be pajama-day. Every Saturday would be husband appreciation day. I could taste the power in my mouth, and it tasted sweet. It tasted strong.
Fast forward to present day. I’m not so sure that I would have Tyler’s vote if the election was today. Sarah’s got everything stacked in her favor. She nurses him, changes him, cleans him, and loves on him all day. What do I do? I come home from work and unapologetically rip him from the warm, loving, gentle embrace of his mother’s arms. Yeah, I’ve clearly got the upper hand here. Sarah Palin has a better chance of forming a full, competent sentence than I do of getting Tyler’s vote. I do have one thing going for me though, my little ace-in-the-hole.
Years and years ago – we’re talking 15 years or so – I was reading the comics from the daily newspaper. One of the comic strips was For Better or For Worse by Lynn Johnston. In this particular strip on this particular day, Elizabeth said something snarky to Michael. In the next box, he looks at her, dumbfounded. And in the final box, Elizabeth has her tongue sticking out of her mouth. There are little lines and dots drawn around her tongue to represent spittle and movement. The caption read “pthbbbtttb”. I remember thinking how bold it was that the author tackled the subject of trying to spell out the sound produced from sticking your tongue out and blowing.
I have no idea whether Lynn Johnston was the pioneer of this, or not. What I do know is that it was the first time I had ever seen it done, and that memory stuck with me.
The “pthbbbtttb” is my saving grace with Tyler. There is nothing funnier nor more endearing to him than to see me pthbbbtttb. He gets the biggest grins on that silly little face of his when I do it.
My campaign will be simple, “Vote for pthbbbtttb.”
I don’t know if it’s enough to get Tyler’s vote, but it can’t be any worse than trying to work the word “maverick” into every one of my statements.