Advice for new parents… and Arlo

The kids at Clementine’s school asked Linette and me to come in a little while ago. They wanted to throw us a baby shower. It was super sweet. The big surprise, which Clementine had managed to keep from us up until that point, was that all the kids had collaborated on a book full of tips on what we should and shouldn’t do with the new baby. Here’s one of my favorite pages. It was created by a kindergartner. It says simply, “keep needlenose pliers, scissors, poison and fire away.”

So, if you were planning to send a pair of neeldenose pliers to Arlo, welcoming him to the world, you might want to hold off for a few years. The same goes for poison.

On the subject of advice, I was wondering if you might have any to share, either with Linette and me, or with Arlo. Are there other things that he should stay away from, in addition to scissors and the other stuff mentioned here? Are other types of pliers OK? Are there, maybe, things that have changed over the seven years since we had Clementine that we might not be aware of? Is teaching them to smoke still frowned on? How about baby books… are there new ones that we should check out? And what advice would you give someone being born into the post-Occupation generation? Should he eschew schoolwork, and focus instead on the art of street fighting? Would he get farther in life if, when the time comes, he chooses to be gay? All I’ve told him so far is that he’s going to have to learn how to grow his own food, and be satisfied with less. I suspect htere’s more that he needs to know, though.

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22 Comments

  1. Paige
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 2:28 am | Permalink

    Alright, I know what you meant, but really…. choose to be gay? Thought I’d point this out while it’s still the middle of the night and the masses are still sleeping.

  2. Paige
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 2:30 am | Permalink

    Arlo- Everything you saw at your home on Wednesday when that strange man showed up at your home to deliver a singing telegram was all you’ll ever need to know in life. Ignore the rest of the stuff, none of it will be as valuable as that.

  3. Levi
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 4:12 am | Permalink

    Well, you already missed your chance to name your son Nevaeh or Lleh or Yrotagrup. Or Natas or Reficul.
    Or Susej.
    It’s up to you to know what to do now.

  4. ChelseaL
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 6:08 am | Permalink

    Three words: “alcohol,” “tobacco” and “firearms.”
    Interpret them any way you’d like.

  5. Posted December 12, 2011 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    For Arlo:

    1. The people who claim to be your parents may be lying. Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof. Demand that proof.

    2. The TV will look prettier if you paint a picture on the screen.

    3. Don’t let your parents ever take you to a rock concert, a church, a slurry lagoon, or an Otherkin convention.

    4. Chocolate is full of roach parts and rodent shit.

    5. Try to scream more loudly than your sister. It’s good for the lungs.

    6. If you’ve seen one movie, you’ve seen them all.

  6. John Galt
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    Become a teacher, and start suckling from the tax-payer teat. It’s easier than working.

  7. John Galt
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Flossing is for Socialists.

  8. Mr. X
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 9:36 am | Permalink

    I think the “choose to be gay” thing was a reference to other conversations on this site where conservatives have attempted to make the case that people choose to be gay.

  9. Edward
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    Be a conformist (at least outwardly). You’ll get your ass kicked less.

  10. Marsellus Wallace
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 10:01 am | Permalink

    Don’t listen to them kindergartners. That school is filled to the brim with unrealistic motherfuckers. It’s better to be the one with the blowtorch and the pliers than to be the one without. Age don’t matter.

  11. karen
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    You’re parents will only have enough money to send one of you to a private school.

  12. Otto
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    clean your tools before putting them away
    learn an old-school trade, even if you don’t intend to use it
    don’t treat people poorly
    be thankful for what you have
    learn to play a musical instrument
    put as little private information on the internet as possible
    don’t let them circumcise you
    stand up for people who are weaker than you are
    don’t be afraid to make mistakes

  13. Sandy D.
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 1:22 pm | Permalink

    Get a library card as soon as you can write your name on it, and use it a lot.

    Learn the difference between you’re/your and they’re/their/there.

  14. anonymous
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 2:11 pm | Permalink

    Public restrooms, for the most part, are vile. Try only to poop at home.

  15. Anonymous Mike
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 3:05 pm | Permalink

    Don’t bathe the baby in gasoline.

  16. Kenny Rogers
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 3:26 pm | Permalink

    You got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em,
    Know when to walk away, know when to run.
    You never count your money when you’re sittin’ at the table,
    There’ll be time enough for countin’ when the dealin’s done.

  17. Chuck D
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 3:53 pm | Permalink

    Fight the power

  18. gary
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 4:13 pm | Permalink

    if you use your left hand, it feels like someone else is doing it.

  19. Petre Larzon
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 7:29 pm | Permalink

    Who is Arlo? I’ve never heard of him.

  20. Grabit
    Posted December 12, 2011 at 10:51 pm | Permalink

    Arlo, learn to walk ASAP! But don’t let onto to anyone that you can until you’re at least three. Just let others see you scoot on your butt until second grade. Sit back and enjoy the anxiety this creates while you perform all manner of mischief. From there, it’s a quick and seamless transition to Wall Street.

  21. balthor
    Posted December 15, 2011 at 12:59 pm | Permalink

    I no can make child. I parent from afar, along the sides of you.

    https://twitter.com/#!/KattyKayBBC/statuses/147085273191288832

  22. x
    Posted December 21, 2011 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    Nothing is “Free”

    Don’t ever let someone tell you that you can’t do something. You can do anything you put you’re mind too.

    Aim for the middle of the water.

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