Thursday, April 03, 2008

Sad Dad Bad Had

Dad is sad
Very, very sad
He had a bad day
What a day Dad had

Hop on Pop, Dr. Seuss

Actually, I had a great day! It was my kid’s who had the bad day. Due to me. Fortunately, I’m able to divorce myself from the feelings of others to the point where I can independently have a great time while others in my orbit are not as happy. It’s one of the main reasons people don’t like me, in fact.

Here’s the story.

Every now and then, a local running event comes around that offers a Kids Run as part of their race line up. As both of my kids aren’t quite old enough yet to take part in a 5k, they look forward to these Sunday morning ½ mile or 1 mile races preceding the bigger events.

This past Sunday was one of those events. We registered early Friday, got their race t-shirt, and filled their heads with excitement for the event and the bright, shiny race medal they would get for participation. Friday night and all day Saturday we would mention the impeding race to kind of stoke that excitement and watch the smiles blossom on their sweet, innocent, about to be crushed little faces.

‘No, you cannot have such-and-such friend stay over Saturday night because you have to get up early the next day.’

‘Yes, you have to keep polishing my car as its good for your pre-race mental preparation.”

You know, the usual Keepin-It-Fun-For-The-Kids technique.

We had a nice leisurely Saturday. Awoke real late in the morning. I checked out some bikes at a local cycle shop taking my first ginger (ws= +3 pts) step into the world of duathletes and triathletes. I don’t know what I’m looking for quite yet as far as novice quality bikes go. The one with the basket and horn looked cool though.

Saturday, the alarm was dutifully set. Mrs. Nitmos handles this task as I have not mastered the finer points of alarm clock setting. For some reason when I do it, it goes off 2 hours later to the soothing sounds of Barry Manilow.

The alarm triggers on time. Everyone is in the car on time. We are at the park on time. We even had our pick of parking spots. We literally could park anywhere we wanted. You see, the event was on Saturday not Sunday. We missed it. I missed it. No race. No medal. No proud feelings of accomplishment.

Just another gray, cold March raceless, medaless day.

I had to think fast. If this was Monday, I could have turned around with a big convincing smile and shouted “April Fools!”. Instead, I did what anyone would do in my position when faced with the sad, heartbroken faces of your own children: I made them feel as if it was their fault.

“If I hadn’t been so concerned with feeding you on Friday, I would have remembered the race was Saturday morning. Besides, you barely polished the car anyhow. It’s a mess. So, look on the bright side, you have time to finish!”

I suspect they wanted to do a bit more than Hop on Pop. Probably something more in the order of a "The Bitsy Big Boy Boomeroo" (who knew Dr. Seuss could be so serious?).

We had a bad day
What a day we had

The kids ran an exciting ½ mile loop around my neighborhood that Sunday morning. They were timed. They each came in first in their age division. Since we paid the entry fee, we are now in process of trying to acquire 2 left over participation medals from the event organizers. After all, who holds a race on a Saturday? Honestly!

We did attend the event last year as reported here. And, yes, it was on a Saturday then. The difference was that I was running on that day. See, if it’s about me, these “details” seem to matter a little more.

Since I encouraged you to shower nasty comments on the anonymous photo in the previous post, I now open the floor to disparaging remarks about my parenting skills. Have fun but remember I'm as tender and as easily broken as an innocent foal.

Happy trails.

Last night, I had another terrific "Limbo" run. In shorts, even (50 degree heat wave)! Except, I started too fast and actually didn't make it under the bar for mile 2. Again, I cut it off after mile 5 to keep with my training plan.

5.0 miles
34:37 time
6:56 pace

Miles of 7:10, 7:12 (missed limbo!), 7:05, 6:50, 6:20.


Topher said...

Reminds me of my favorite Deep Thought by Jack Handey:

"One thing kids like is to be tricked. For instance, I was going to take my little nephew to DisneyLand, but instead I drove him to an old burned-out warehouse. "Oh, no," I said, "DisneyLand burned down." He cried and cried, but I think that deep down he thought it was a pretty good joke. I started to drive over to the real DisneyLand, but it was getting pretty late."

Danielle in Iowa said...

After your daughters experience from last year, her lack of redemption this year surely means she will hate you forever - especially if you keep stealing her Hello Kitty bandaids. Unless, of course, those belong to your son :-)

Russ said...

wow, sounds like the wallet might be out for a while with that one...i got called bad dad for working late and not playing wii...but wow...all kidding aside, your kids will forget it soon enough and be mad at your for something else...

Vanilla said...

Kids need to learn to deal with disappointment, sometimes I do things like this on purpose. They'll thank you for this later in life.

Great Deep Though quote from Topher above.

Kristina Pinto said...

Ever hear of Winnicott's "good enough mother?" I totally live by that model of parenting--letting down my kid is a daily practice and makes him better equipped to handle disappointment. At least that's how I comfort myself :) Also, I buy him lots of candy.

Non-Runner Nancy said...

Oh dear, that is bad and sad.

Marcy said...

Oh no, I could never post a nasty comment. Afterall, I tend to use the "I made them feel as if it was their fault" practice myself and often . . .very often :P

Don't sweat it, kids are resilient ;-)

Eric Gervase said...

Nice Topher... Yet again, we're in the same mold. My favorite (which has nothing to do with this post, sorry Nitmos), goes like this...

"If you ever catch on fire, try to avoid seeing yourself in the mirror, because I bet that's what really throws you into a panic"

RazZDoodle said...

Hell. At least you let your kids out of their cage. More than I can say.

Amanda said...

Oh my gosh this is hilarious! You are teaching them early to only compete against themselves...yeah that's it.

sRod said...

I'm usually of the school that the best form of birth control is other people's children--but this cruel fun actually has me looking forward to it.

By the way, tag, you're it.

SLB said...

Found you through Nancy; blame her!

I nearly missed today's (Saturday) event thinking it was tommorow (Sunday)! Like you said who races on Saturday!

Lily on the Road said...

OMG, I haven't stopped laughing yet! Blame Nancy, I was stalking her blog and found you just like slb.....

too funny!BTW, nice kitty bandaids!! Poor, Poor kids....