April 12, 2010

Time Travel

My evenings have taken on a routine that's both tremendously predictable and completely off script. Everything depends on the temperament of the baby boy at any given moment, and every day he's changed in some subtle way that makes every new day the equivalent of shaking an Etch-a-Sketch.

If you were to break down a typical evening, it would look entirely bland: 5 p.m. - return from work. 6 p.m. eat and feed the little dude. 7 p.m. - Bathe the boy, because he's basically filthy from his 6 p.m. feeding. 8 p.m. - Put him to bed.

Interspersed within that three hour window, however, is a multitude of minor dramas that seem important at the time but are quickly forgotten. There are bumped heads, and forceful poop grunting sessions and flashes of incredible cuteness intermixed with moments of sheer exasperation and exhaustion. And then we go to bed, knowing full well we'll be embarking on the exact same unknown adventure the next day.

And it all makes going to work seem all the more pointless. It's not simply that work takes me away from my boy for eight hours a day, it's also that I'm so freakin' exhausted, I can barely focus on work to begin with.

I try to diminish the cacaphony of the 5 -8 p.m. routine by ordering take-out food from time to time, which removes the food preparation component that can throw our evenings for such a loop, but even that doesn't always go according to plan.

Tonight, I left work fully intending to call ahead and order BBQ take-out, but when I got to my car, I discovered my cell phone was dead. You can't exactly call and order take-out with a dead cell phone, so I decided to go home and charge the phone and THEN go and get take-out. But then my wife got home a half hour later than normal, which meant we'd actually sit down to eat after 6 p.m. at the earliest, so our routine was already in jeopardy. Throw into the mix the fact she wanted to go to HOM furniture to look at a sectional, and I just knew our night was screwed.

I returned from my take-out run before my wife and son returned from HOM, so I had a precious 10 minutes to eat by myself and watch television, and what was on but "The Hunt for Red October," which was a routine viewing staple during my last year of college since my roommates and I couldn't afford cable, so we basically watched a collection of VCR movies over and over again. And since we were usually too lazy to swap out the tapes, Sean Connery and Alec Baldwin were on a perpetual loop come dinner time.

For a brief ten minute window, I was back in 1997, eating dinner while watching "The Hunt for Red October," and it occurred to me just how great I had it back then. I could sleep as much as I wanted. I could skip class if I knew I could get away with it. I could play "X-Wing vs. Tie Fighter" until my eyes fell out of my sockets, if I so wished. I was basically free to do whatever the hell I wanted, but I'm sure I just whined and complained back then, which is just a tragedy, really.

Anyway, it's now time for bed, and I'm totally exhausted, and I'm sure I'll wake up tomorrow wondering why the hell I have to go back to work, when I'd sure as hell prefer staying in bed and dreaming of a TIE Advanced fighter in the cross-hairs of my A-Wing.

1997, man. I had it all that year.

Posted by Ryan at April 12, 2010 08:52 PM | TrackBack

Good Posting Ryan. I have 2 kids myself and remember those days of college watching "Tommy Boy" over and over until I knew every word. Oh the memories.

Posted by: Del at April 13, 2010 02:15 PM
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