Science of Parenthood, the Book!


Norine Dworkin-McDaniel and Jessica Ziegler, the creative forces behind the popular parenting blog Science of Parenthood have written and illustrated a book entitled Science of Parenthood: Thoroughly Unscientific Explanations for Utterly Baffling Parenting Situations, which launches November 17th! The ladies sat down to talk about the unique and hilarious concepts that make Science of Parenthood so special!

What’s Science of Parenthood all about?

Science of Parenthood started nearly three years ago as an illustrated humor blog. We use fake math and science to “explain” the stuff that puzzles parents every day. Things like …
Why are broken cookies “ruined?”
Why does it matter what color the sippy cup is?
Why can’t you put the straw in the juice box without your kid having a melt down?
Why will a kid whine-whine-whine for a toy, then lose all interest in that toy once they have it?
Where the eff is my phone?
We’ve come up with some pretty hilarious theories.

Our book, Science of Parenthood: Thoroughly Unscientific Explanations for Utterly Baffling Parenting Situations, is like our blog … but like our blog on STEROIDS! We utilized the blog to road test–perhaps we should say “field test”–material, and now the book contains the kinds of cartoons and writing that fans love to find at Science of Parenthood, along with all new cartoons, infographics, flowcharts pie charts and quizzes that we created just for the book. About 90 percent of the book is brand new material.

Divided into four sections–biology, chemistry, physics and mathematics–the book lives in the chasm that exists between our collective hopes and dreams and expectations of what parenting will be like … and the brutal, slap-you-upside-the-head reality of what parenting actually is. We cover all aspects of pregnancy, birth and the hilarious frustrations that come with early childhood (tantrums, picky eating, diaper blowouts, illness, sleep issues, play dates, toy creep, homework battles and encounters with crazy parents (not you, of course, we mean other parents). And you know what? You don’t even need to be a scientist to “get” it.

Our goal is just to make parents laugh. Because when you’re a parent, you NEED to laugh. Humor is a survival tool. After your tot has gotten the top off a jar of Vaseline and smeared every surface within reach–as happened to our friend Gail–or tried to “help” you paint a room and ended up covered in blue paint–as happened to Norine’s sister Shari–you have to laugh. Or you’ll end up sobbing. Or wearing one of those fancy white jackets that buckles up in the back.

Is any of the book autobiographical?

Pretty much all of the book reflects through our experiences as parents. Take the piece “Experimental Gastronomy: A Study in Potatoes” from the Chemistry section. It’s written like a scientific paper about an experiment in which a researcher tries to determine if a preschooler who likes French fries will eat mashed potatoes. Raise your hand if you can hypothesize the outcome (see what we did there?) The piece is completely based on Norine’s inability to get her five-year-old, who loves fries, to even taste mashed potatoes. Says Norine: “I tried everything! I even offered him extra chocolate for dessert, and he still refused to take even one tiny nibble.”

Why science? Are either of you scientists?

Not at all. We’re moms dealing with the same kind of crazy stuff everyone else is. Science just makes a great metaphor for the frustration, exasperation and humiliation that comes with everyday parenting. Think about Einstein and how he explained his theory of relativity: “Sit on a hot stove for a minute and it seems like an hour; sit with a pretty girl with an hour and it feels like a minute. That’s relativity.” Well, that’s parenthood too. One minute you’ve got a newborn covered in goo and then next, you’re watching teary-eyed as they skip into kindergarten without even a backward glance or a kiss goodbye. And yet, when you’re into your third hour of Candy Land on a rainy day, time seems to stand still. (If you haven’t played Candy Land with your toddler yet, trust us on this. The scars never really heal.)
Where did you get the idea for Science of Parenthood?

Our “eureka” moment came when Norine’s son, Fletcher, came home from school talking about one of Newton’s laws of force and motion: An object at rest stays at rest unless acted on by an external force.

Says Norine: “That instantly reminded me of Fletcher with his video games. He’d sit on the couch and play games all day if I didn’t confiscate the iPad. I jotted down, Newton’s First Law of Parenting: A child at rest will remain at rest until you want your iPad back. Later, I posted that on Facebook. It got a good response, so I started posting other parenting observations and giving them a math or science twist, like Sleep Geometry Theorem: A child will always sleep perpendicular to any adult laying next to them. Both of these are fan favorites and two of the very few cartoons we pulled from the blog to include in the book.

“As a writer, I’m always looking for new ways to tell stories. And in that eureka moment, it struck me that math and science make fantastic metaphors for telling the universal stories of parenting. Like scientists, we parents are always fumbling in the dark, searching for answers, wondering if we’re on the right track and second-guessing our methods. And because a picture is still worth a thousand words, I knew that these science-y quips would be a lot more popular on social media if they were illustrated. So I called Jessica and asked if she wanted to illustrate a book of these funny observations.

“Jessica was the one who saw that Science of Parenthood could be much bigger than a single book. She saw the potential for a blog and a social media presence and ancillary products. She quickly secured a domain name for us and created a Facebook page and Twitter feed. She began illustrating the observations I had already banked. Two weeks later, we debuted on Facebook; a week after that we rolled out the blog. Now we’re three years in, and along with Science of Parenthood, the book, we have mugs and magnets and posters featuring our images. Earlier this year we published two collections of humorous parenting tweets—The Big Book of Parenting Tweets and The Bigger Book of Parenting Tweets.

Where can readers find Science of Parenthood?

Science of Parenthood is available for pre-order as a soft-cover and e-book on Amazon right now. (http://amzn.to/1DcVllh). When it’s released November 17th, readers will be able to find it on Amazon and in bookstores.

And you can always find Science of Parenthood on Facebook (www.facebook.com/scienceofparenthood), Twitter (www.twitter.com/sciofparenthood), Pinterest (www.pinterest/sciofparenthood) and Instagram (www.Instagram.com/scienceofparenthood).

About The Authors

Norine is the primary writer for Science of Parenthood, the blog, and Science of Parenthood, the book. A longtime freelance magazine writer, Norine’s articles have appeared in just about every women’s magazine you can buy at supermarket checkout as well as on The Huffington Post, Parenting.com, iVillage, Lifescript and Scary Mommy websites. Norine is the co-author of You Know He’s a Keeper…You Know He’s a Loser: Happy Endings and Horror Stories from Real Life Relationships (Perigee), Food Cures (Reader’s Digest) and a contributor to several humor anthologies, including Have Milk, Will Travel: Adventures in Breastfeeding (Demeter Press). She lives with her husband and 9-year-old son in Orlando.
The daughter of famed New Yorker cartoonist Jack Ziegler, Jessica is Science of Parenthood’s co-creator, illustrator, web designer and contributing writer. In her “off hours,” Jessica is the director of social web design for VestorLogic and the writer/illustrator of StoryTots, a series of customizable children’s books. Her writing and illustration have been published on The Huffington Post, Vegas.com, InThePowderRoom.com and in Las Vegas Life and Las Vegas Weekly. Jessica was named a 2014 Humor Voice of the Year by BlogHer/SheKnows Media. She lives with her husband and 11-year-old son in Denver.

Together Jessica and Norine published The Big Book of Parenting Tweets and The Bigger Book of Parenting Tweets earlier in 2015.

For more information, or to interview the creators of Science of Parenthood, please contact Joanne McCall at joanne@joannemccall.net or 503-642-4191.

Find book covers and author photos online at www.scienceofparenthood.com/press/

If you would like Norine and Jessica to visit your book group, contact Norine at norine@scienceofparenthood.

Book Tour Cities/Dates — http://scienceofparenthood.com/category/book-tour/
(Scroll to the bottom of the post. These book tour dates are current as of 11/3 … we’ll update as we add more parties.)

Shortlink to buy the book — http://amzn.to/1DcVllh

Science of Parenthood website — www.scienceofparenthood.com

SOP on FB — www.facebook.com/scienceofparenthood

SOP on Twitter — www.twitter.com/sciofparenthood

SOP on Instagram — www.instagram.com/scienceofparenthood

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Starf*cked: A Grande Flappucino and a Donut, Hold the Tongue

grande donut

By now we’ve all heard the tale of gross injustice. At a donut shop, far, far, away, which will  undoubtedly reap the benefits of this outrageous fortune, a pop star stuck out her tongue and unleashed not only her saliva, but also her disdain for this great country of ours.

‘murica. And on Fourth of July weekend, no less.

Cries of anti-patriotism, disgust, and disparity over the lack of good sanity judgement were heard from all across this land. Questions were raised. Did the pop star, one Ariana Grande, indeed hate her country? Our country? Was she just a spoiled, immature, entitled bitch donut licker out to spread disease and horror among a nation teaming with donut eaters? Or was she simply being young, foolish and in-the-moment as all of us have been at one time or another, albeit without the presence of surveillance cameras, social media and anybody really giving a shit about what we did because we weren’t in the entertainment industry? Was she looking down her nose at us as she stuck out her tongue? Can any of us do that? I mean, at the same time?

Just how many licks will it take to get to the center of this tootsie pop star’s eye roll?

The world may never know.

I say that because immediately her PR team got busy jumping on the backpedaling bike towards damage control. A day later, young Ariana released a statement apologizing for offending those with open hearts and deep pockets, in an attempt to free herself from contempt. Listen. I’m proud to be an American, were at least I know I’m free.

So there’s that. Which is nice…

Ariana assured us that she loves America and all the God fearing donut eaters in it. She’d just like to see us Super Size things a little less. Just sayin’. And wouldn’t we all?

Please press PLAY and read on, my fellow ‘muricans.

Don’t we all want the same things, after all? A roof over our heads, clothes on our backs, three, no, four square meals a day interspersed with a few snacks here and there? Don’t we all want to be young and unencumbered by conventional practices like keeping our tongues in our mouths around openly displayed foodstuffs? Aren’t we all simply longing for the chance to be heard, for at least 15 minutes, or if you’re Kate Gosselin, a good, solid ten years and some appearances on Dancing With the Stars and Wife Swap? Isn’t forgiveness where it’s at? Can’t we all just overlook this obviously unseemly and totally misunderstood and taken-out-of-context unfortunate incident? And didn’t we all love Ariana’s last big hit, whatever the fuck it was, and look forward to the time when she drops the next one like a hot potato in an Idaho potato field? Gosh, sure do! Don’t we all really just want to be stars in bars, driving fancy cars, living la vida loca in random donut shops across this great land of ours? Amen, my brothers and sisters! Amen!

Now…if you ask me…I’m thinking her apology wasn’t all that sincere. I’m just saying, she played the “misunderstood” card, the “taken-out-of-context” card. I don’t know about you, but to me, a tongue on a donut is a tongue on a donut. But I will say that we’ve probably all made a joke or two, or three hundred about America and the dopes that roam freely among us, sneezing on salad bar…uh…sneeze hoods, open carrying and using in movie theaters over spilled popcorn, spewing hate and such. And yes, eating a shit ton of donuts while Super Sizing the hell out of everything.

We’re a land of excess, we all know that. Let’s own it. Ariana is what, 22? How stupid were we at 22? But she’s in a unique position, so it’s time to cut that shit out.

I guess what I’m saying is that maybe everybody’s glazing over the real issues that need to be addressed. And I know that there are countries that are totally jelly of us. But we can’t continue to overlick the injustices that reek havoc in our own backyards in favor of nailing a post-pubescent pop star to a proverbial cross. To my mind, nothing could be cruller. Aren’t we better than that? Can’t we show each other and the world that our hearts are love-filled and creme-filled? Think about our history. From the Boston Creme Party to Custard’s Last Stand, we owe it to ourselves to rise to our own occasion, at yeast a little. Don’t you think?

As for young Ariana, I think girlfriend needs to own it in order to move on. Because now, the donut shop owner is in deep with the Health Department for leaving the donuts out in the first place. What Ms. Grande unwittingly did was uncover the truth about the uncovered donut…uh…cover-up. And she can’t be blamed for Donut Guy’s bad food practices while she mocks America’s bad food habits.

So here’s my suggestion. Donut Guy: put a lid on your munchkins. Ariana Grande: Keep your tongue in your mouth like a lady. We’re willing to look the other way this time. But grow the fuck up, wouldja? You don’t see the Kardashians sticking their tongues out in public, do you? Well…maybe you do. And finally, to America I say, downsize, prioritize, and realize that there are more important things in need of our attention. For God’s sake, put down the donuts and let’s get busy.

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It’s Not Easy Being Green: The All Day Morning Sickness Blues

You know how celebrities and really, really lucky people go around saying things like “I didn’t have a day of morning sickness. I felt great”? That’s just sick, isn’t it?

I can tell you that’s never been me. With both of my pregnancies, I was sick all day, every day, from day one up until delivery. No, make that during delivery. Each passing day, week, month, was a veritable throw down, and all I could do was throw up.

Oh, don’t get me wrong, I loved being pregnant. Renting out precious bodily real estate to your beloved future progeny, feeling the baby move, encased in your 9 month time share is one of life’s joys. It’s just the constant hurling I take exception to.

The worst was when I was pregnant with my first son. We nicknamed him Shecky, after comedian Shecky Greene, even though at the time, almost nothing about that pregnancy was funny. But the green part, that was pretty accurate. I was green the whole time. Never mind the swelling, bloating, constant trips to the bathroom, fast food cravings and sleepless nights. My husband and I were in the middle of a major house renovation, which meant that all of this played out in front of a construction crew for the duration. Really, they were so sweet. And patient. They didn’t even seem to mind me heading them off at the pass for dibs on the bathroom during those prime morning hours. But boy, did I mind showing up after one of them.

One of the crew members was this really polite, good looking college kid. As if I didn’t feel old and unattractive enough carrying a basketball around front and center all day, this guy insisted on calling me Mrs. Roy. Somewhere around month six, I woke up so thirsty, it felt like a remake of Laurence of Arabia was being filmed behind my bicuspids. I waddled to the refrigerator for something to drink, poured myself a tall glass of grape juice and guzzled it while standing at the open fridge door. Adjacent to the kitchen was the dining room; full of windows and a set of french doors leading to the garden.

It was particularly quiet that morning, so at the first signs of an almost inevitable volcanic eruption, and the realization that using the downstairs bathroom would only make matters worse, I figured the coast was clear to burst open the french doors, run outside and let go with a force so strong, it made Mount Vesuvius look like a weak elementary school water fountain. I remember thinking to myself “Wow, it’s got a nice arc to it” and the memory of how very vividly purple it was has never escaped me. But perhaps what sticks with me the most, is the expression on Mr. College Co-Ed’s face as he stood there in abject horror, witnessing the humanity of it all. Poor kid. I’ll bet he’s been to less graphic Frat parties.

If I couldn’t leave the house without permanently scarring others for life, I don’t know what I was thinking when I agreed to accompany my husband to a Lions Club dinner. The event was being held in the private party room of an upscale restaurant, and all the members of the organization and their spouses were in attendance. My husband was new to the organization and wanted to make a good impression, so he scored spots for us at the big-wig table. I was determined to hold my own, as well as my dinner, which was either steak or fish. This was a huge dilemma for me as I hate fish and the smell of any kind of cooked meat was enough to send me hurling over the edge. Literally. But which would smell worse? I decided it would be the fish. And I’m not sure if I was wrong, but let’s just say I found out that day that I can run in heels, especially while pregnant, and that we won’t be going to any more Lions Club dinners.

Naturally I decided to lay low until D-Day. Every smell or bite of food sent me running toward porcelain salvation. So when my due date arrived, I was anxious to get the show on the road. The day, along with its meals, came and went. Nothing. No contractions. Nada.

I read somewhere that spicy food can induce labor, so I suggested to the husband that maybe Indian food would make a good in-flight meal for little Shecky. For some reason, he agreed. We ended up at the all you can eat Indian buffet and somehow I made it through the aloo gobi without aloo gagging.

It wasn’t until sometime after midnight that the contractions finally kicked in, but miraculously, the sickness had not. And after several hours of failed attempts at a vaginal birth, I ended up in the OR strapped to the table, covered in warm blankets to shield me against the cold, sterile environment I now found myself in, with my husband sitting beside me, holding my hand, lovingly reassuring me.

That’s when the nurse brought over a small shot glass containing a strange looking green liquid.

“What’s this? Is it necessary?” I asked. Since I’d already been given an epidural, I didn’t understand what it was for.

“Oh, it’s just something we give everyone so they don’t get sick from the effects of the epidural, and your husband mentioned you’ve had quite a time of it with the morning sickness throughout your pregnancy. Better safe than sorry, right?”

Sure, in theory. But unfortunately we were headed full throttle toward sorry. Or rather, my poor husband was. Because as soon as I downed the anti-vomit elixir, it came back with a vengeance, but without the magnificent arc of my previous achiemvent. Still, it was a vivid green, and it spewed forth directly into the face of my unsuspecting, and now, thoroughly drenched husband.

“Aren’t you glad you mentioned the morning sickness?” I weakly teased.

“Pfffttt. Funny. Real funny.” he muttered through a veil of goop.

“I think it’s safe to say ‘It’s not easy being green’,” I quipped, “Sorry.”

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It's Not Easy Being Green: The All Day Morning Sickness Blues | elleroy was here

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Yes! My First World Problems Do Amount to a Hill of Beans

Coffee is a way of life. In fact, it is life as far as I’m concerned.

I started drinking the stuff when I was ten, even though it came from a five-pound can of Folgers decidedly not-French roast, and was nothing more than sludgy water with milk But it was my sludge of choice.

So as the years passed, I gradually edged closer toward my current coffee snob status with full enthusiasm. From the discovery of stovetop brewed Turkish coffee in college to grinding my own beans from New York City’s Zabar’s coffee haven in my twenties, each new caffeinated discovery brought me closer to a deeper understanding of the religion of coffee and a oneness with the Goddess Caffeina.

So I was completely content with my Cuisinart coffee maker, when one day the husband came home extolling the virtues of the new and amazing coffee brewing technological advancement his client had just brewed him a cup of joe from. Claiming it was the hottest, most flavorful, aromatic coffee he’d ever tasted, I knew we had to get a piece of this action in order to realize true hot beverage Nirvana.

This most coveted gift from the gods was called Keurig, a cup-at-a-time brewmeister that turned pre-filled K-cups of just about any flavor imaginable into the kind of beverage dreams are made of. From coffee to tea, hot chocolate to apple cider, I could be the envy of all who would bear witness to this revolutionary appliance holding court in my kitchen.

Something to brag about.

Boasting for the roasting.

We quickly secured one for ourselves and commenced brewing of vast quantities of caffeinated bliss. So much bliss, that I swear I danced on the ceiling even without Lionel Ritchie streaming through my sound system.

Before Keurig, I had only thought my life was full. But I soon realized that wasn’t living. I had been going through the motions in black and white.

But now, now my life was filled to the brim. I was finally really living; in color. Colors were more vivid than I ever could have imagined, food tasted better, indeed the coffee did, and life was sweeter than ever before.

That is, until tragedy struck.

One morning not unlike any other, sliding my mug onto the brew platform and popping a coconut macadamia K-cup into the machine, I hit the “brew” button in sweet anticipation of being brought back to rapturous consciousness, when…


This was not the usual full-on cascade of liquid gold, but a sad, hesitant fail.

I unplugged, replugged, and hit “brew” again. Nothing. No cascade, no drip, just the disturbing droning sound of an appliance in distress.

Madday! I panicked. What NOW? How would I regain consciousness? How would we make it through the day without this life giving force?

I pored over the instruction manual for answers. Poking at it failed to unclog its pours, and three vinegar and water coffee machine douches later, I was inconsolable.

My beloved Keurig was dead. And I killed it.


I took to my bed. But I could not awaken from this hellish nightmare. After all, at that point there was zero chance I was ever going to be alert.

When at last I was finally able to stare fate in its cold, decaffeinated face, I realized that this was a job for customer service.

Frantically, I tapped the digits into my phone, answering the audible prompts with the utmost urgency: “ONE!” “YES!” “TROUBLE SHOOTING!” And after ten excruciating minutes that felt like a lifetime of pain and suffering in some third world country without fresh brewed coffee, the voice of salvation appeared. The voice of my café guardian angel was calm, gentle and reassuring. Sensing that I was thoroughly distraught, she talked me down off my ledge of despair in broken english like a tenured 911 operator.

“Aldright. Tell me yourd seedial numbuh.”

“My what?”

“Yourd seedial numbuh.”

My seedial numbuh? Oh! You mean serial number?”


“Oh my God! I don’t know. Where is it?”

“You will find dee seedial numbuh in dee bock of dee matcheeeen.”

This woman was so there for me in my time of need. She spoke words of barely indecipherable encouragement and salvation, breathing new life into my then, limp, un-caffeinated body; indeed, into my soul.

You must find a papah cleep.”


“A papah cleep. Pay-pah-cleep.”

“Oh! A Paper clip?”

“Yes! Papah cleep.”

“But I tried the paper clip. It didn’t work!”

“Leesten to me. You must find a papah cleep. It weeel worduck.”

“But…but…I used my last paper clip and it’s bent and useless, and I don’t know…I…I might have another one, but I don’t know where…”

My voice trailed off as all hope was fading like Monica Lewinsky’s blue dress after several dry cleanings. Apologizing profusely for wasting her time, I offered to call her back once I found one.  But no. She was in this for the long haul.

“I am hered to make surud you geet yourd Keudig worducking and I weell wait on de line weed you unteel you find a papah cleep.”

“Oh my God, thank you. You don’t understand, I could not live without my Keurig.”

“Oh, but I do underuhstand. I could not leeeve widout my Keudig.”

Wow. And she really was from a third world country. This was a first-world, third-world convergence; full-on solidarity. I had found my coffee soul sister.

And so it was that she waited for me. Patiently. She waited while I rummaged through kitchen drawers, tore apart my office and ransacked the kids’ school supplies, speaking to me all the while in the same broken, yet reassuring timbre.

“Dōn wordee. I weeel stay on dee line.”

“It’s just that, I drink coffee all the time. And now I’m used to this coffee. I…I can’t…”

“I underuhstand. Me too.”

I appreciated the sentiment, but somehow I didn’t believe her. She was too calm.

“I FOUND IT! I found a paper clip!!” I exclaimed with a rush of jubilation.

There is was, wedged under a baseboard in the hall, next to the bathroom, one lone paper clip. My salvation. I yanked it out with all my might, blew the dust and dog hair off of it and held it in the air triumphantly.

What transpired next, was a delicate balance of negotiation as she talked me through painstaking maneuvers involving a series of holes in the machine, holes I didn’t know existed, in an attempt to unclog and free them of unrepentant residue.

It was only after repeated poking, purging and feverish tutelage, that the impacted grounds could be freed.

And all the while, she got me, you know? The way only true compadres do.
We bonded that day, across the miles, through a shared appreciation of technology and hot beverages. Together, what we experienced was a true International Coffee Moment.

I was all up in Keurig’s business, covered in coffee sludge, blathering away, seemingly to no one, when Kevin walked in.

“What are you doing? Who are you talking to? Really? You called customer service?” he mocked.

“You want Keurig to work again, don’t you?” I hissed.

“We could just buy another one” he offered.

“NO! Ihsan and I have already put too much into this one! It deserves a second chance. We deserve a second chance.”

“Sird, I am comeeted to serduveeng you. I have helped others. They have brewed again. I promeese you weel brew again.” my faithful trouble shooting companion assured him.

He just rolled his eyes and went upstairs.

But who had the last laugh and the first freshly brewed cup of coffee when the crisis was finally averted?

This gal, that’s who.

Before we parted ways, most likely never to speak again, Ihsan (which is Persian f0r “compassion”, by the way) told me to be sure to douche the machine every month so this would never happen again.

And I figure what’s a gallon of vinegar every thirty days if one wants to go on living? And I mean really living.

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Yes! My First World Problems Do Amount to a Hill Of Beans

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Good Humor Me! What To Get the Husband Who Wants Nothing

No, I did not marry an axe murderer.  This is Christmas 1990, the year I got Kevin a shirt he considered “fruity” and a meat cleaver.  Why a cleaver?  Because a week earlier he gazed longingly into a locked case full of knives at Bed Bath & Beyond and professed his desire to own a meat cleaver. Who am I to argue when I had no creative ideas of my own?

What he neglected to mention was that he wanted a Chinese cleaver, which is why he looks less than enthused. Chinese cleavers are thinner and lighter, while this one just evokes images of murder. Nothing says Merry Christmas like a Sweeney Todd reenactment.

We still have the cleaver, though the shirt ended up in the Goodwill pile a long time ago.  Somewhere in the greater Cleveland area there’s a homeless guy dumpster diving in a decidedly fruity shirt.

The thing is, it doesn’t matter what I get him, he doesn’t want it, need it or use it.  I’ve gotten him CDs and DVDs that are still shrink wrapped.  Books?  Already read them or knows what’s in them.  Gift cards sit in the sock drawer go to the kids. Which, by the way, is entirely selfless and sweet of him, but every year I’m left in a complete stress spiral about what to give him.

This year Father’s Day and his birthday fall on the same damn day. Sunday. This Sunday. I got nothin’. Seriously, I’ve asked him what he wants, I’ve searched for a clue. I tried to throw a party. We’re actually going to have two of his best friends and his family over, and that will be fun. But everything from getting him to tell me what kind of food wants, to his cake flavor of choice has been like pulling the proverbial abominable snowman’s teeth.

In our more than 20 years of marriage, I can think of a small handful of gifts I’ve given him that he’s actually been surprised and/or excited by. For his 50th birthday, his best friend flew out to surprise him. Last Christmas I got him Bob Odenkirk’s book. He read the whole thing that morning howling with laughter with tears streaming down his cheeks.

And there was the Good Humor truck.

Kevin’s got sort of a creepy fixation on the Good Humor ice cream truck. I’m still not sure exactly what it is. Is it the vintage truck? The fact that it’s filled with ice cream? Or is it the ice cream man in the starched whites with the goofy hat? Let’s hope it’s not that. On a recent vacation, he spotted a Good Humor man fully decked out standing in front of the truck and he actually dragged the kids over for a picture. The kids could’ve cared less, but Kevin was giddy. Frankly, I think it’s a little nutty-buddy, but I’m sitting on a collection of little plastic Walking Dead Funko Pop figurines, so who am I to judge?

DSC_1503 DSC_1506

Who do you turn to when you need a slightly whacked out fringe gift? Thank you, eBay! My search for a model of the truck only confirmed my suspicions about the world being full of fanatics of every possible kind when I realized that scoring a tiny Good Humor truck was going to cost me dearly. We’re talking in the same league as baseball card collecting. Words like “mint condition” and “still in box” were being thrown around. Seriously? The Good Humor truck? Suddenly I realized that like so many other things, (think G.I. Joe and Dr. Who memorabilia) this was a “thing”.

Good Humor

Yes, it’s a “thing”. Complete with hand holding and picture taking. Do the women do this too??

I got him one. And he LOVED it. I mean, I think he shed a tear. I’m pretty sure it was the whole childhood thing. What do I know from youthful ice cream truck experience? I lived in a rural area where we had to travel by horse and buggy for a fudgesicle. And besides, aren’t ice cream trucks just the creepiest things? Okay, there’s ice cream and that’s obviously great, but the warpy canned carnival music followed by shouts of “Hello!” just scream serial killer in a clown suit and I don’t want to forever associate rocket pops with John Wayne Gacy, you know what I mean?

So now I’ve got two days to come up with the perfect gift. Or just something he’ll take out of the shrink wrap. Someone suggested I get him a Good Humor cooler and fill it with ice cream. Great idea! But then the truck we’d be talking about would be Brinks.

What should I get him? What do you get for the husband who has everything and/or wants nothing?

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Photo by Adam Kuban / CC BY
Photo by a.p.bymichel / CC BY

Good Humor Me!


By |family, humor|14 Comments
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