My Breakdown Of Rainbows And Unicorns

crispydoc Uncategorized 16 Comments

My rationale for pursuing financial independence and reducing my clinical load (almost typed cynical load – what do you make of it, Dr. Freud?) has been largely to have more time for my family.

I now realize this might be mistaken by readers to suggest that my family time is in some way more tolerable than theirs; that my children are better behaved; that every board game we play has a loser who conducts himself with grace and “Jolly good show, old chap!” mumbled in an affable British accent; that we spend every evening singing together around a piano like wealthy Victorian families in Jane Austen novels.

This is not the case. Lest you mistake me for another hyper-curated online presence, I’d like to reveal the unblemished version of that togetherness.

40% of our time together involves flatulence humor.

20% of our time together is spent separating the children from one another so they won’t fight, and encouraging them to alert us instead if the other child is provoking them.

10% of our time is spent regretting that we asked them to do that. We are not referees, we explain to them; the stripes we wear represent the prison of parenthood that confines us, rather than the impartial administration of justice.

Not wanting to lose a teachable moment, we use the opportunity to impart useful idioms such as, “Stop throwing your sister under the bus.”

10% of our time together is spent wishing we were apart. Recently this has come in the form of a sudden unexpected leap onto my abdomen as I lie on the sofa following a night shift. I attribute this hazard to reading my kids every Calvin and Hobbes treasury we could get our hands on, where inevitably Hobbes the stuffed tiger pounces on an unwary Calvin.

I’m making an effort to remind the children that Houdini died young from an unexpected blow to the abdomen. This elicits the desired expression of remorse, followed by “If you die, can I have your computer – to remember you by?”

10% of the time is spent drifting off to troubled sleep while wondering how the kids unerringly knew to knock on our door after bedtime, interrupting our final opportunity to fool around, so that we have only enough energy to add to the list of shows we hope to cram into watching on netflix when we take advantage of the free subscription month someday.

The final 10% of our family time together? That’s reserved for unicorns and rainbows.

Comments 16

  1. Ahh the joys of parenting 🙂

    I was an only child (as is my daughter) so a lot of the sibling stuff is absent in our household (it has its pluses and minuses as an only child).

    I would definitely want to FIRE just in order to increase the % of time dedicated to flatulence humor (I suggest that the entire amount of time gained from leaving work be put into this category).

    The house is a mess, I get a ton of interrupted time if I’m doing anything important or even watching TV, and some of my after work free time I used to have is now vanished because I have to watch middle school volleyball (which is probably the hardest spectator sport to watch on earth, and is it just me or am I the only parent is hoping our team gets bounced out the playoffs the very first game so the season can finally end? (apparently playoffs are like a participation trophy for these precious snowflakes and EVERY frickin team gets a ticket to the dance.)).

    That being said, when my daughter has to go for a month to England as part of the custody arrangement, the house seems empty/lonely and comes back to life only when she steps back in the door.

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      My dad used to come to my t-ball games with a Time magazine, sit in the stands, and read the magazine. Granted, I was more mathlete than athlete, but he tried to support me in his way, and however lame it may have felt at the time, I’ve come to appreciate the effort he made.

      My daughter just started playing basketball last year, and it was surprisingly fun to see her blossom as a player. My wife, son and I became the team boosters, and her games grew to become time we looked forward to (even as we disliked the hassle).

      One of the themes of FinCon has been the luxury of choice that money provides, specifically the ability to spend time with your kids while they’re young and seek your company.

      Can barely stand them one second, miss them terribly the next. I think that’s the natural rhythm of parenthood.

  2. “40% of our time together involves flatulence humor.”

    Now that’s a family dynamic I can appreciate. I know it well, my friend. With a few shifts in my chair, a few grimaces, and a few humble but audible toots, I’m invariably assaulted by Mrs. Groovy’s acerbic tongue: “Are you perking?” What would family life be without the often maligned fart. Does God have a great sense of humor or what? Nice freakin’ post, my friend. You made my day. Cheers.

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      Mr. G,

      Thank you for the kind words and rich visual. Farts are the foundation for some of my closest relationships. I’m immediately suspect of any friendships that cannot accommodate the indignities of aging and transform them into humor and connection.



  3. 40% flatulence humour! I need to up my game, focus, and stop wasting my time getting sidetracked by the micturition jokes. I thought I was being more sopissticated.

    Our kids still don’t knock to wake us up at night. One of us will just roll over, have the hairs on our necks rise with this sensation of being watched, and crack an eyelid open. Standing there silently in the dark is usually a child in a nightgown just looking at you. Like straight out of The Shining. Scares the crap out of me every time.

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  4. Your family sounds like ours, plus or minus 10% on the fart jokes and accusations. I love the overall sentiment, BUT as an unapologetic Jane Austen-o-phile, perhaps the only man alive that will admit to it, I must correct one sentence.

    Jane Austen lived and wrote in the Georgian era, and the instrument played by Lizzie Bennett and the like was known at the time as a pianoforte.

    Another slip up like that, and I will be forced to cancel my email subscription!

    (All in jest, of course 😉)

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      This is my very first literature M&M experience, and it certainly beats surgery M&M (last experienced as an intern on rotation).
      Consider me educated, and thanks for the gentle corrective,


  5. Bahahaha! LD that is CREEPY!! You need to lock the door.

    When my kids were super young, they would drive me around the bend at times! I used to lock myself in the bathroom for a couple of minutes just to get away for a bit. They wised up pretty quick though and started to follow me right in!

    I think we are all on the same page with how we feel about our kids.

    CD, you can tell you simply adore your kids.

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  6. Read this post to wife last night. She laughed repeatedly which made me kind of jealous. Her comments were:

    1) You physician bloggers sound very similar (probably the flatulence part).
    2) Crispy Doc should get his kids in karate. A knock out clears the provocation and tattle-tailing issue right up!

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      1) I can tell you married well.

      2) We tried one session of judo – neither kid took to it. Per my son, “I don’t like people telling me what to do.” I’m thinking in binary terms: entrepreneurship or prison will be the outcome.

  7. Love it and can definitely relate. We seem to have evolved/devolved to solid state as evidenced by my kid singing (at the top of her lungs) about poop last night.

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      Thanks for stopping by. As for your poop pop star, I’m frightened to let you know that technology might enhance your experience.

      My kids were fooling around with grandpa’s Alexa a year ago during a visit and my son asked Alexa, “Sing a song about poop!” Unbeknownst to me, there exists a song called I poop whose lyrics our entire family has since memorized from hearing it so often.

      Scatological humor for the win!

      Thanks for making me feel less alone,


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