This blog is officially "retired," but my other blog,
"The Lair of the Silver Fox," is still open for business!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Go Forth and Multiply

Gallagher, comedian and former California gubernatorial candidate, used to do (or, for all I know, still does) a routine where he talks about sports which he calls "dumb." His remark about skiing was (and I'm paraphrasing here, because it's been at least fifteen years since I heard the routine) "Put a couple of flat boards on your feet and try sliding down a mountain covered with snow? Big deal. Try not to."

"Try not to."

That phrase comes to mind whenever a talk show audience applauds someone who says he (or she) 1) has a child or children, or says 2) (and this is more important to the thrust of this particular rant) that he/she has just had a child. I always wonder, what exactly is it that they're applauding? Coincidentally, it reminds me of yet another Gallagher routine. Referring to the way politicians regularly trot their wives and children out for public scrutiny whenever they're running for office, Gallagher asks aloud what our reaction is supposed to be. Are we to say, "Oh, good. His d**k works," and then vote for the candidate, for that reason alone?

Folks, let me tell you something: With the exception of those relatively few unfortunates who want to have children but -- for clinical reasons -- can't, conceiving a child is so remarkably easy that it happens quite often, many times purely by accident! (And please don't act surprised by that last little tid-bit!)

And before anybody gets in my face about the trials and tribulations of the birthing process itself, or the headaches involved in supporting & guiding a child to adulthood (and often, beyond) ...I'm only talking about conception here, folks. And once Mr. Sperm meets Mrs. (or Miss) Egg, the actual squeezing-out process for the little puppy is pretty much a foregone conclusion.

To repeat: I'm only talking about conception here, folks. That part is relatively easy (unless the two of you are into sexual gymnastics... but I digress). Preventing conception is, generally speaking, much more difficult. "Try not to," indeed.

So, be forewarned. (I always liked the term "forewarned," by the way. What other kind of warning is there, other than one that comes before something occurs?) If you ever tell me that you or your significant whatever just gave birth, I'll probably congratulate you (although, depending on your individual circumstances, such a response may not always be appropriate), but don't expect any freakin' applause from me. I'm pretty darned sure you didn't get any kind of appreciable ovation while you were making the little diaper-dumper, so don't expect one now.

Thanks for your time.

P.S. ~~ A lot of pressing appointments today, boys'n'girls, so I'm afraid the preceding post was recycled from November 6th, 2003! Gotcha!


  1. Supporting and guiding a child through to adulthood is hard work.

    (boom boom)

    *Jayne wanders off to wind up someone else*

  2. Or, you can always dismember and devour the child instead... or tie a towel around its neck and throw it off the roof. There are so many choices available to the modern parent.

  3. Along these same lines...why the "congratulations" on Birthdays? Was it hard work to accomplish the amazing feat of doing absolutely nothing but surviving another year? ( I know...survival is hard for some people) I think, if we're going to celebrate birthdays, the Mom should get the gifts and congratulations. They actually DID something!

  4. Cousin Saul:

    Gifts for Mom on the child's birthday, fine. I just won't give her any applause. (Although my own Mom may merit some for putting up with me through my formative years... and beyond.)

    And I won't applaud if you just got married. Big deal. Lots of people do that. And some people do it lots of times! On the other hand, tell me you just passed your twentieth (or thirtieth, fortieth... whatever) wedding anniversary, and that will impress me because making a marriage work takes real effort, and because of that, too many people give up far too quickly, for stupid reasons.

    (Lord knows I'd have to give your wife kudos for having been Mrs. Cousin Saul since, what, like 1920... ?)

  5. I've raised two troublemaking cats and a pup to adulthood.

    ::waits for applause::

  6. p.s.
    ::naively:: 1920!? Wow. Cousin Saul is oooooold.

  7. 1) There is SHOCKING content here, and I must earnestly protest. I am offended. I am chagrined. Indeed, I am saddened--probably saddened most of all. Sometimes, you just go over the line, David'z. Specifically: How could you quote something that the melon smushing guy said? What's next? Carrot Top? Of course, the other possibility is that I have underestimated the melon smushing guy. And possibly Carrot Top.
    2) In future, please use tidbit instead of tid-bit. Actually, I prefer the term "titbit," a la the Brits. But then, that's because I'm all titty like that.
    3) His DUCK works?! Good. I have known far too many idle ducks. I WOULD vote for a candidate who could get his duck to work. Oh, yes. Yes, I would.
    4) Isn't everybody just applauding the sex act 'cause it's so awesome? That's why I always applaud when folks have a baby. They have clear evidence of the sex act, and they are not just bragging. I clap, I leer, and sometimes I wink lasciviously; if I'm close enough to the baby-maker I dole out some high-fives. Are other people clapping for something else?
    5) I clap for the Wolfman, too!
    6) Best of luck with your pressing appointments! I hope you get everything ironed out and don't get too steamed in the process.

  8. Cake:

    You... you... Canadian, you! I waited at IANO's store for TWO HOURS and you didn't show! IANO had a table set up so I could sign comic books, a big banner outside, the works! Lemme guess: Your airplane ran out of gas?

    Oh, and Cousin Saul is really old. He's so old, he's even a tad older than I am, and I'm so old that I'm almost dead. (Hey, should I be drafting a long-ass tribute column about myself, just in case?)

    Lois: So nice meeting you. (At least YOU showed up for the party!) And I'm so sorry I forgot to throw money. Maybe next time.

    Sparkle: Gallagher is, to a much lesser extent, somewhat like Jeff Foxworthy, in that people underestimate him only because they're often only familiar with his best known bit. (In Gallagher's case, it's the infamous Sledge-o-Matic, and in Foxworthy's case, it's all those "you might be a redneck" jokes.) Gallagher actually has some halfway decent material if you can get past all the props.

    However, if it'll make you feel any better... Carrot Top really does suck big time.

    2) Why can't I use the hyphen in "tid-bit" any more? Are you saving them all in case you run out of en dashes & em dashes? And I prefer not to use the term "titbit" (or "tit-bit"), but if it's any consolation, an upcoming post will deal with two of my favorite subjects: breasts.

    3) Ummm... no, not "duck"... ummmmm... Never mind.

    4) Alarming insight, that. I never thought people were applauding the sex act. However, it still isn't right. If some actor or singer or whatever goes on a talk show and announces that his wife or girlfriend just had a baby, why should they applaud him? They might be giving credit to the wrong man.

    5) You should clap for the Wolfman, because he gonna rate your record high.

    6) I am steamed, because Canadian Cake was a no-show.

  9. Oh, sorry, David...I did a whole Cake blog explaining my absence but you must've missed it.

    See, I'm a high-priced call...what? I already tried that excuse and decided it wouldn't fly?


    Errrr...want some cookies?

  10. Yeah, I just read -- and commented on -- your blog. I would've read it earlier but I tied up four hours today driving to and from IANO's shop, and hanging around there for two hours.

    (Gimme cookies.)

  11. Gallagher sucks! Pass it on!

  12. 2) Because I say so, and, in response to your impending follow-up question, "Yes, I AM the big boss of you."

    3) Whaddya MEAN "No, not 'duck'?

    4) There is always the risk that one gives credit to the incorrect man. Yet, what IS credit if it is not something to be given indiscriminately (regardless of what those grumpy old credit card companies might say)?

    5) Don't be steamed about Cakie's no-show--shhhhhh, I heard she had a little trouble at the border concerning her Jolly Santa Sack of meds. She's pretty sensitive about it, and...ix-nay, ix-nay!

    HELLO, CAKIE! Yes, yes. It is wonderful weather today!

  13. 2. My, you are a take-charge kinda gal, aren't you? Ummmmm... Do you have any plans for Friday night?

    3. Not "duck." His "dirk" works. You know, a term variously used to describe a long dagger or a short sword? (Like there's a real difference.) People like to vote for candidates who are somewhat macho. It's the whole national defense thing, ya know?

  14. I'd paraphrase the George Carlin bit 'bout the whole child rearing thing but it might upset a few of you. David I'm durprised you didn't bring THAT one up.

    Cake: I applaud you( vigorous clapping ). Can I have a cookie too?

    Cousin Saul: Ouch!

    David and Cousin Saul aren't that old. Then again, neither is Noah.

    Hey waitaminit! I voted for Gallegher in the last election!

    Sparkle Plenty; if you think this is shocking content...

    David: tsk, tsk, tsk, picking on Mrs. Saul like that.

  15. Are you sure it was Gallagher or his almost-twin-but-not-as-successful-brother Gallagher II?

  16. SubTorp: Hey, this wasn't an anti-children post! It was a very-specifically-anti-let's-all-applaud-someone-who-either-got-pregnant-or-got-someone-else-pregnant post. And I would never insult Mrs. Cousin Saul. I was giving her credit for putting up w-- I mean, being married to Cousin Saul for so long.

    Redbeard: It is a scary thought, innit? A world with two Gallaghers?!?

    Wonder if Carrot Top has an almost-twin brother somewhere?

    [sound of thud as Sparkle Plenty faints and falls to the ground (without rolling or yelling)]

  17. So, what's the weather like there?

    ::whistles innocently::

  18. ("So, what's the weather like there?" she says! Why, I oughtta... !)

    You know, Cake, "go forth and multiply" can also be a classy, almost-biblical substitution for a certain crude & oft-used two-word phrase...

  19. Now I've just spent five minutes following you around and giggling to myself.

    This is why I watch saves me from this kind of lunacy.

  20. Cake: I am far too old and out-of-shape to be running around like this, trying to stay ahead of you as you chase me from comments section to comments section. If only I could find a way to distract y--

    [pointing] Look, Cake! A truck! [runs and hides while Cake is distracted]

  21. Ooh! Truck! ::runs off::

    Don't worry, I'm going to watch tv at 9pm...then I'll stop causing trouble.

    Hey, has anyone warned you that I amuse really easily? Just wondering.

  22. So do I, when I'm as tired as I am today.

    I'm just waiting for some of the other bloggers to stumble across this nonsense, and think, "Wow! These two must have no lives whatsoever!"

  23. For the record, I never claimed to have a life. My evenings are usually tv, movies, a little internet, and some reading.

    Not that there's anything wrong with that, of course.

    (The computer was sitting next to me on the couch, just waaaaiting for a commercial...though now there's a cat where it was. Reilly...MOVE! Dang cats.)

  24. SubTorp: You've been mentioned on Sparkle Plenty's Dinosaur Casserole blog!

    Cake: Am not!

  25. I agree with this one completely. If raising kids was as easy as making one, more "parents" might actually try


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