Last Wednesday, at approximately 11:37 in the a.m., the daughter of the Recent Paterfamilias, clever little animal that she is, discovered how to open her own diaper. The expression which spread across her face, as her fingers decidedly pulled that Velcro strap off to the side, has not been seen on a human visage since that Greek guy sat in his bathtub, saw the water rise, and then ran through the streets screaming Eureka, Eureka. As many of my readers might suppose, this discovery of my daughter is, decidedly, not good.
This is not a good development. And it must be admitted, even by this observer (the closest of close observers of that tiny human): This child is smarter than I am. This is an established fact. And, thusly, she can thereby outwit me, distract me, bamboozle me, and then there we are: a diaper-less baby accompanied by a man who’s a mess in a room that’s a disaster. This, it must be acknowledged, is hardly an enviable position in which to find oneself.
So what does one do? Does one potty train early? Does one yell, scream, chastise, and then repeat as necessary? Does one duct tape the diaper to her tiny derrière?
The Recent Paterfamilias finds himself conflicted. Duct tape is easily accessible and reassuringly economical, but is it worth it? And how does one train an infant out of learning that which she has already taught herself? Frankly, to this R.P., that seems like an exercise in futility, if not downright impossible.
Per my personal experience, it should be noted that babies, as a species, don’t seem to want to learn all that much, but that which they do learn, they don’t seem to forget all that easily. The Recent Paterfamilias supposes that they are much like the common, ill-bred housecat in this way.
So what am I to do? The R. P. appreciates expressionistic art as much as the next idiot, but Jackson Pollack-esque splatters of baby bowel movements on my living room walls are, artistically, pressing the boundaries of good taste.
But the Recent Paterfamilias is open-minded. Maybe the graffiti art movement, established and influential as it is, is decidedly over, out of vogue, dated, kaput. Maybe it’s the nouveau-infant-stool-flinging-school that has recently, and officially, and decidedly, established its foothold in the art world.
But then again, should this be the case, what will we be left with? And who is going to want to go see an exhibit of it at The Guggenheim? If we ain’t careful, should we allow this unfortunate art movement to proceed, they (the art-loving public) will have no choice but to label that particular Fifth Avenue corkscrew-shaped building as the The Poopenheim. (Although, frankly, given its downward-spiral physical movement, like that of water down a toilet bowl, I’m beginning to wonder if this wasn’t the intention by Mr. F.L. Wright in the first place.)