May 11, 2010

Of Genies and Nipples

Parenthood carries with it all sorts of unexpected little dramas you never dreamed would enter into the parenting equation.

For example, I would never have guessed how important it is to keep Diaper Genie liner refills on hand at all times. Whenever I load the Genie with our last remaining liner, I get some idea what it must have been like for the Germans manning the machine guns on D-Day as an endless stream of allied forces stormed the beaches.

The last Diaper Genie liner is like the last bandolier of ammunition. Once it's gone, you have real problems to deal with, because those allied forces--in the form of unspeakably filthy diapers--just keep coming at you, one after the other.

Or, consider bottle nipples. I didn't realize, until this very week, that bottle nipples come with varying hole sizes. My wife just happened to notice our boy was having an unusually difficult time getting at the formula in his bottle and concluded it was time to move him from low flow to medium flow nipples. I had no idea such a progression was even necessary. I mean, do human breasts come equipped with varying spigot widths? If so, breasts are even more amazing and awesome than I had previously believed, which is saying something, because I held breasts in very high regard to begin with.

Now, if you can imagine a scenario in which you are both out of Diaper Genie liners AND your baby is graduating to larger nipple holes, you have an idea of the drama I experienced tonight after work.

It started off innocently enough. While walking back to my car after work, I called my wife and asked her if I should pick up something to eat on the way home. She agreed take out would be nice, and then she reminded me of our dire need for Diaper Genie liners. Perhaps it would be possible to pick up dinner AND make a Diaper Genie liner run. It wasn't "Mission: Impossible" difficult, but there would be some logistical planning involved. Then she remembered the nipples, at which point she uttered something remarkable:

"Oh, and we need bigger nipples. You should go get those nipples."

The last time I had been given a directive like that, I think I was attending a bachelor party. As it was, I knew perfectly well what my wife meant, which is yet another unexpected side-effect of parenthood: your vocabulary understanding changes drastically.

So, the mission was: pick up something to eat (pizza), and buy Diaper Genie liners and bottle nipples, and hopefully don't confuse the three when I get home, because putting a pizza in the Diaper Genie would just be plain embarrassing.

In my mind, it made the most sense to order pizza and then go shopping while the pizza was prepared. Unfortunately, since I ordered pizza from a Pi Wood Fired Pizza joint, it meant my pizza would be torched and ready to eat within a matter of minutes. So, I place my order and sprinted across the street to the nearby Target.

I've been dealing with Diaper Genie liners for over seven months now, so while I may not be an expert, necessarily, I have more Diaper Genie experience than most high school age Target employees. So, when I asked a young man where they moved the Diaper Genie liners, I was met with a particularly blank stare. I could have just as well asked where they kept the bottled unicorn flatulence.

Eventually, I was handed off to an employee well-versed in the dark arts of Diaper Genie maintenance, and by rare luck the liners turned out to be in an aisle across from bottle nipples.

Another unexpected parenthood realization: there are a lot of different types of bottle nipples. Babies apparently have a wide variety of nipple preferences. I had no idea babies had such an eclectic taste when it comes to their nipples. I imagine babies get together in secret to compare and sample each other's bottle nipples, sort of like an infant version of wine tasting.

Thankfully, my nipple selection process was made simple because I was looking for a very specific brand, and there wasn't much variety to that brand, so I said a silent thank you prayer to the nipple gods, grabbed a couple packs of nipples, and headed for the check-out.

Although my shopping sojourn took all of ten minutes, by the time I returned to pick up my pizzas and wrapped up the drive home, the pizzas were fairly cold, so we had to reheat them in the oven, which sort of put a damper on the whole "Wood Fired" appeal that drew me to the pizza place in the first place.

All is well, however, because now we have the bottle nipples with the larger holes, so the boy can feed more easily, and we have the Diaper Genie liners necessary to hold the diapers that will catch the end product.

Posted by Ryan at May 11, 2010 10:26 PM | TrackBack

Whenever someone mentions the Diaper Genie, I immediately think of Opus the penguin buying the Ronco Pocket Diaper Steamer after watching an infomercial.

Posted by: Keith at May 12, 2010 02:57 PM
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