What a day!
After returning home from school (where I work as a teacher) I took a nap. Not much exciting there. But after I woke up and went to daily mass, I took my three year-old daughter to her very first piano lesson! As a dad, this made me very proud. As a pianist, this made me very, very proud. We went with a teacher in the neighborhood who uses something called the Suzuki method. Essentially, they start the child very young and teach rhythm techniques and variations before getting into the note-reading stuff. It’s not how I learned; but as a product of home-schooling earlier in my life I am all for trying “different” methods of teaching if they are successful. Having heard a demonstration from the piano teacher’s own teenage son, I am very much interested in trying this out. Although, I have to admit I had my doubts at first. I envisioned Harold Hill teaching my daughter the “think method” (ala: The Music Man). Tonight’s lesson was only about a half-hour long and consisted, among other things, in learning the importance of the student bowing to the teacher before and after each performance. My little girl, ever the showman, made the most profound bow from the waist. Then she held that pose for about thirty seconds. I recorded it. I know. Well, she’s either going to learn the piano or be the next Wayne Newton on the Vegas Strip. We shall see. Either way, Daddy and Baby Girl had an incredible bonding moment. And both of us got stickers from the piano teacher!
Upon our return, we entered our kitchen — now looking ever more like an English pub — to a wonderful smell. My wife had prepared chicken and rice in the crock pot. So what if it was served on paper plates? It was our second real sit-down meal in our new home and it was wonderful. The real fun of tonight, though, came after dinner. My kids love, no love, a cartoon on Nick Jr. called Bubble Guppies. Truth be told, I like this show too. It’s clever, relaxing, and features a plethora of pop songs. Well tonight was the season premier of their favorite show. Faithful readers will remember the insanity with which my kids were once devoted to shows like Wow Wow Wubbzy and Super Why. And who could forget Strawberry Shortcake? I’ve still got that theme song stuck in my head. I’d include a picture of the cast but it is Nick Jr. and I don’t want a copyright violation lawsuit. Instead, you may click here to go to Nick Jr.’s page. Tonight, though, my son, having been indoctrinated by two week’s worth of promotional commercials, “organized” a movie night and invited Aunt Kris, my wife’s sister, to spend the night. First, it’s a 22 minute TV show, not a movie. Second, Aunt Kris lives across town so there’s never really a need for her to sleep over. But she’s being a good sport and a great aunt and capitulated. My wife made up movie tickets with numbers on them for our son to collect as we entered the family room. My son stood before us, much like the head usher at Radio City, and told us all “the rules”. “Um, there’s no smoking, drinking, or… [whispered] Mommy, what else? [louder] And no using your phones! Now sit back and enjoy the show.”
All went swimmingly (pun intended) for the first few minutes. And then Aunt Kris, who is single and a great catch 😉 chimed in with one of the most disturbing comments of all time. Looking at the blue haired Bubble Guppy on the screen, she… Well, first let me point out that the BG’s are all pre-school aged mer-children. The have fins instead of legs and swim around the ocean under the guidance of their “teacher” Mr. Grouper. Have I mentioned that it’s really a cute show? There are six of them exhibiting different personality traits and they each have a different, wild hair color. The one with blue hair is called Gil. So, staring at Gil for a moment, Kris blurted out: “He’s kinda’ hot.” After I cleaned up the vomit I, knowing that I would hate myself for asking, asked her “Whowhat?” She responded “Well, he’s swimming around without his shirt on and all…” My son and daughter, oblivious to their aunt’s preference in men simply ignored her comment. My wife and I, on the other hand, ran searching for mental bleach.