Top 5 things to never say to a woman

I was stuck on 4 until my buddy Chris was over and he immediately was like dude, don’t ever talk about a girl working out.  Winner, winner, chicken dinner.  I’ve been either the perpetrator or felt the repercussions on all of the below, and the net of these has resulted in sleeping on the couch, running out to get a big fat chocolate apology cake, or having an unworn article of clothing lying in the donation pile for the Salvation Army.  Friends, tread lightly when it comes to asking anything controversial to a female.  You’ve been warned, stay as far away from these topics as possible.

#1) Are you pregnant?

Just don’t.  Unless she’s going into labor, specifically starts talking about the impending baby, or you’ve been at the baby shower or gender cake cutting party, this is the ultimate faux pas.  To date, I haven’t ever actually asked it of someone but instead have gone with a more circuitous approach when I just needed to know.  Examples include asking whether she wants a beer while you’re up (and even this isn’t foolproof), ask if she has any big plans coming up over the next few months, or whether she’s been training for any marathons.  But, I have been privy to the aftermath of what happens when the question is posed.  My wife’s friend, a woman (and mind you one who has had kids before), decided that it would be a confidence booster to ask whether my wife was pregnant because she looked like she was “glowing”.  Well, she wasn’t, and this just cycled into phases of rage (directed at me), a new dartboard being put up with said friend’s picture on it (kidding!), and ultimately, pregnancy #3 because might as well have the real glow.

#2) You’re (acting) crazy:

I mean seriously, who hasn’t said this to their wife or girlfriend or sister or friend.  What’s fucked up though about this is that even if you’re right, and all rational thought has left a woman, uttering what you both are thinking is grounds for a serious verbal accosting.  Now, instead of trying to reason with her, instead I either text/show/sing the following to her:

 

#3) You need to calm down:

Combine this one and make you’re crazy and need to calm down and pretty much this sums it up:

 

#4) You should work out today

What you could mean What she hears
You never take time for yourself You think I’m fat
Why not go a little longer since you always say you don’t have enough time to work out You think I’m fat and that my workouts suck
It makes you feel better about yourself so that you’re less apt to act crazy or need to calm down. Great, now I should feel bad about myself too for not working out today.
Are you going to Pure Barre tonight? You don’t think Pure Barre is really a workout (which I do, but my wife likes to show me videos of it and then say, ugh, this doesn’t do it justice at all).

 

#5) That’s a good outfit to take a walk in:

This pretty much captures the essence of why you should just never give an opinion when asked how something looks.  Do you like this shirt?  Absolutely, is the right answer.  Which shoes do you like?  The ones that you were planning to wear is the only appropriate response.  Earrings.  Yes or no.  Depends.  Usually, I just stare blankly until she either guides me to the one she wanted me to pick or she answers the question herself (which, let’s face it, she already has her mind made up and if you fuck up the answer, she has to start the process all over).  I learned this lesson the hard way when my wife went back to work after baby #2 and she ordered something from Title IX.  She asked me how it looked and believe me, she looked smoking in it, but apparently, I failed to stay up on ladies fashion and didn’t realize that leggings + dress should immediately yield a response of, wow, that would be perfect for work.  My answer, admittedly was dumb, and that dress has never made its way into the work rotation . . .  but it still is a killer outfit to take Maizy on a walk!

Top 5 Songs to get your kid to f’ing sleep

I have 3 kids and am married to the most amazing woman and mother.  Oh, and side note, the kids are all boys, a fact that my wife is ever so pumped about. Bennett, you were supposed to be a girl dammit!  Like all parents, we’re constantly tired and sleep deprived and my wife has it way worse than I do in this department. These boys are active, super fun, but also exhausting, and then there’s the not so minor issue that they all suck at sleep, or did so at one time.  We tried sleep training, admittedly, not as militant as you should be, but honestly, parents who have kids that sleep through the night from six weeks on and think it has anything to do with sleep training can suck it.  Some kids just aren’t wired to be amazing sleepers.  You can influence it for sure by sleep training, but I’m convinced the sleep gene exists, and I know this because it sure as shit isn’t present in any of my 3 sons.  

So sleep is a battle or more aptly put a war, and these mofos are like Napoleon before he lost his way or what I imagine Khal Drogo would’ve been like had he had the chance to plunder Westeros.  When they were young, my wife was the primary sleep person because, well, you know, the boob, but sometimes she’s had to tap out and that’s where I enter.  I can’t leverage the nip strategy and none of them really fell asleep with a baba so I had to start experimenting.  Long car rides, being held, running, patting on the back, done them all, but the soothing stroke of music in conjunction with one of these has been my go to method.  This blog is just one man’s ranking for the top 5 songs to get your child to f’ing sleep.

Enjoy!

Lime Tree – Trevor Hall – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=88N6wCYab2I

This is the song that started it all for me.  For my birthday one year, shortly after our first child was born, my wife got us tickets to see Matisyahu in the city (she wasn’t a fan of his but because she rules and knew I liked him, she went with me).  Well, at the end of the show, Trevor Hall comes up and does a duet with Matisyahu and it’s the Lime Tree and we are both like dude, this guy is the freaking man.  A little iTunes 99 cent or 1.29 later and the Lime Tree is on my iPhone and one desperate sleep day, I just put it on to shake things up , turned my son on his side, right arm dangling down and just started moving slowly around the room in circles singing along to that voice.  That deep, guttural voice that is just so unique and so powerful.  And as his arm went limp after maybe a few renditions experimenting with when to hum, or to sing along, or improvise, he passed out and my go to move was born.

Hey Hey – Dispatch – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NAl5vx1fL20

Insert any number of songs by this band to my list.  Definitely in my top 5 bands I haven’t seen but would like to, but save that for another post.  Until The National supplanted this with baby boy #3, this was my most played out song on my phone.  This is definitely one my heart wants to belt out and pretend that I’m on an American Idol tryout, but then I realize that if sleep is the goal, then let’s let the experts do their thing.  The crescendos, amazing harmony, and just overall power moves me every time, and luckily for me, it put sweet little Olivey to sleep in a matter of minutes.  Do I dare try and transfer?  How about we just make sure he’s passed by doing one more time through.

I need my girl – The National – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A-Tod1_tZdU

I first remember hearing this song on The Mindy Project in a tense sexual moment between Mindy and Danny and I downloaded it from iTunes instantly as I thought it could be integrated into a future playlist and stir those same emotions since my wife and I watched the show together.  Yeah, about that, that ship sailed the first time I tried to put our youngest son to sleep after he either unsuccessfully transferred from the boob or just flat out laughed at trying to be put down for a nap.  It’s mellow, has a repeatable pattern, and the voice is just so hypnotic.  I shit you not, when my son hears it, his eyes immediately start to roll back in his head, probably because he knows that this song will be on repeat until he goes the fuck to sleep or because he knows that I won’t be singing along, just rhythmically and consistently singing sh along to the song as if I’ve layered in a new instrument on top.  If you’re having the same issues that I do with a child who fights sleep, trust me, this song doesn’t disappoint, but make sure to put it on repeat.

Back to the Earth – Rusted Root – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9ZCIg8jEkA

I’ll caveat this one by saying that once they transition this to more of a fast paced groove, it’s right back to the beginning for me.  My memory is hazy of when I first heard this song but it was probably in college and when I started this music/sleep experimentation thing with my first son I didn’t remember what it was called, just hey, hey, hey, heya and not of Outkast fame.  So I just decided to start chanting it over and over and over until one day with phone in one hand and restless child in the other I had had enough and was like I’m finding this mother fucker.  Boom, downloaded and on my sleep rotation play list, so that someone other than me was singing that hey, hey, hey, heya on a loop.  But remember, you’ve been warned about looping back at 3 minutes in!

She Sells Sea Shells – Music together – (buy the cd, don’t Google any of the various YouTube renditions.  #nightmare). 

For the other 4 songs I’ve written about during my flights today, I’ve had each song on while I’m writing about it hoping to capture some inspiration or shit like that.  But for this one, I just can’t do it, can’t even have it on my phone.  I swear my oldest kids have nightmares about this song and they still cringe when I try and use it with the little one in the car.  But man, this tune just works so well when you’re riding.  Personally, it brings up the “nap trail” that many Three Village parents are familiar with that starts when you enter Old Field and drive down to the lighthouse and just turn around.  I swear, 50 percent of the riders on that road don’t even live in Old Field but make the same journey that I do hoping to hang a right turn on the way back after a successful ride and head to West Meadow beach for a few minutes of zen.  Music together rules, thank you to my sister in law for introducing me, and this song is my official all else has failed and we’ve now decided to leave the room, jump in the car, and just start driving tune.