Published: Tuesday, March 5, 2013

FIGURING FATHERHOOD

Money down the drain

Quote of the week: If you have to calculate painful loss of money, don’t.
There are times when being a father can be painful. It starts at childbirth. You stand there for hours wondering when the wife will start screaming at you for all the pain and suffering of childbirth. Because obviously it’s all the guys fault. And you wait for the bombshell. Waiting is the true killer.
But the real killer is watching money go quite literally down the drain. It starts with diapers. These things can be used as weapons. Leave a kid in a diaper for long enough, usually five minutes, and it can be used to kill off an entire population of skunks that used to make a living out of being smelly.
Yet, diapers are the greatest wonder of parenthood. They can contain hazardous biological weapons in a safe environment until safely disposed off. So how do you do the disposing bit? Because there comes a time a father will have to change a baby in a diaper. Usually, it’s the very first time because mothers these days can hide your game console unless you do your share of bomb disposal. And bomb disposal it is. This is going to be a helpful article for young new fathers on diffusing that bomb.
First rule: you cannot use a hose, not until the kid is at least two years old. So unstrap the, er, straps, lift the baby’s legs and once you have recovered from your fainting fit, do it again but this time hold your breath. Tissues, lots of tissues are needed and variety. Get dry soft tissue, stiff kitchen tissue, soft baby wipes and scented tissue sprayed with your favourite cologne if you’re squeamish about the smell. The soft tissue takes care of the initial damage. The baby wipes clean the baby butt with care because it is important to keep the proverb ‘soft as a baby’s butt’ true. The kitchen tissue is to wrap up all the other tissues with.
Some parents, i.e. all parents, have babies that scream and throw hissy fits when their diaper is dirty. There’s no such thing as a baby that is quiet while being cleaned. Not in this world. Amidst all the screaming, fighting, cursing and general mishmash of noise, you might drop something. More tissue to the rescue. I’d say it is man’s second greatest invention right after fried chicken.
But then, there was mention of pain and money, something that follows from the lack of the former. Diapers are money down the drain. On winter days, a new-born will go through four to five diapers easy. In warmer weathers it’s a helpful night time tool that prevents the baby from getting wet. It will still be two or three changes a night. Good diapers that breathe and stay dry so the baby bottom remains cool are pricey. You add up the cost of all the diapers you throw away for a year, the figure will be the exact amount that will help you buy that nicer car you want. But you can’t now because you bought diapers. So the real helpful tip in surviving diaper change: don’t calculate the cost, ever.