Learning How to Lie Properly, Epilogue

*After catching you in a lie about who poured water all over the bathroom:

Me:  Cookie, you have to tell the truth, ok?  You can’t say something that didn’t happen.

Cookie: Ok.

Me:  If you did it, you must tell Mommy and Daddy you did it.

Cookie: Ok.

*Later that day:

Me:  What is that smell?

Cookie:  I did it!  I farted!

Me:  *gag*  Ok, Cookie.  Good job telling the truth.

Cookie:  The truth is funny!  I farted!

Mommy:  Why is she proud of her farts?  What did you teach her?

The consequences of teaching you to tell the truth is that now, two years later, you really are proud of your farts.  At your aunt’s wedding, you wowed everyone by flawlessly switching between your four languages, answering different people in the language of the questions asked.  While they were congratulating you, you raised both hands to stop everyone.  In a dead serious tone, you proudly announced that you spoke another language, whereupon you, in your little flower girl dress, turned around, raised your butt, and let one fly.

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Learning How to Lie Properly, Part 2

The next evolution of the fart saga occurred when your behind bellowed in a crowded elevator.  Your stroller stood in the corner, and the source of the noise not only came from your direction, it also came from direction lower than what would have been possible for the other adults present.

Cookie: Not me!

All of the adults grinned at the obviously false proclamation of an one-year-old… until the noxious fumes caused people with weaker stomachs to gag.  I had to wait for fresh air before explaining:

Me:  Cookie, you can’t deny it’s you, when everyone knows it’s you.

Cookie:  Ok, Daddy.

The wheels of your brain churning were clearly evident on your face.  The next fart came a few minutes later.

Cookie waving your arms like a Madagascar penguin:  You didn’t hear anything.

Learning How to Lie Properly

Also known as, should I really be teaching my one-year-old this stuff?

This story starts, as many of these stories start, with a fart.  It was a loud fart, like a balloon popping, a sound that startled both you and me.  We were in the middle of changing you into your pjs, just after brushing your teeth and before reading your bedtime books.  Mommy was still in the kitchen cleaning up the dinner plates.

Me:  That was a big one!

Cookie: Mommy did it.

Me: No, Mommy didn’t do it; she’s not even here.

Cookie: Oh.

Your face shows some serious thought occurring in that brain of yours.

Cookie:  Then, you did it!

Me: No, I would know if I did it.  You can’t blame someone else for your fart if everyone knows it’s not true.

Ten minutes later, after Mommy had joined us, and while we’re reading books, you let another loud fart rip.

Cookie:  I didn’t do it.  You don’t know if Mommy did it, and you don’t know if Daddy did it!

Mommy:  !   What did you teach her?

Genius: Pure, Absolute Genius

Very few people exhibit the driven deviousness that you, Cookie, do on a daily basis.  Whenever I see it, I just have to watch with envious fascination.

At the children’s museum, a one-year old you and a two-year old boy both reached for the same train at the same time.  The boy took the train.  I was about to turn into papa bear on the little rascal, when your mother pulled me back.  She knew better.  You looked around and spotted the boy’s father walk into the room.  You randomly grabbed another toy, a squeaky thing that was absolutely not interesting for you (you didn’t even look at it twice).  You then watched the boy’s father walk over before you handed the squeaky toy to the boy.

Suckered Dad: Aww, Shawn.  Look, she’s sharing with you.  Give her the train.

Shawn shook his head.

Suckered Dad: Shawn, share, or I’m giving you a time out.

You took the train with a triumphant grin.

Some people just have it.  As you know, I occasionally have a guys night out with a few friends of mine.  I don’t go that often (spending time with you is precious), and each of the guys have their own varying levels of participation given work, wives, kids, and other commitments.  We were just having a conversation about freedom and attendance when a friend blurted the strangest thing.

Genius: I’ve given up my season Giants tickets and ordered two season tickets to the opera at the Met.  Two shows a week, every week.  I’m set.

Every other guy in the bar umm… library: Wha?!?

Genius: How do you think I’m here tonight?  They’re watching Aida.

Infantile Flatulence Foolery

Cookie: Daddy, my butt itches.  I have a rash and need ointment.

Daddy: Cookie, your butt looks fine.

Cookie: No, it itches.  Look closer.

*looks closer*

pfffffffffffffffffffffttttt!

Cookie: Haha! Got you, Daddy!

Three reactions instantly popped into my head.

First, argggbublglglglglgglgl!  I never got over how ungodly, eye-watering stenches could emanate from such a cute baby.  (Yes, my nose was blessedly fortunate as you were toilet trained at about the time your pea soup diaper deposits were changing, so no, I never got used to the smell.)

Second, immense pride.  As one practical joker to another, that was truly impressive for toddler that hadn’t even turned two.  I can’t believe that you concocted the entire sequence and then set me up with a completely straight face.  After many years of witnessing guys making uninspired attempts of “smell this,” being caught like this by my beautiful little daughter was AWESOME.

Third, I didn’t know this side existed for girls.  Sugar and spice aside, you’ll soon be in a world where women hide the existence of necessary bodily functions for months in a relationship.  Advice for the future you: don’t.  A guy who can’t appreciate the humor isn’t worth the trouble.

As you may have noticed, Cookie, many of these first posts are of a scatological nature.  Eating and pooping are very important to new parents (Many websites and doctors recommend digital scales.  For the baby!  Ew.), and since Mommy was primarily in charge of inputs in your early life (I lack the functional equipment to assist in that department  –Mommy insisted on feeding from the tap), I was primarily in charge of outputs.  At least that’s my excuse.  It has nothing to do with my immature sense of humor whatsoever.  Those high fives that I may or may not have given you when you let one near Mommy after this particular episode?  Didn’t happen.  Not that you can prove, anyway.

Potty Lies, Part 3

A few months later, you figured it out –Mommy knew you didn’t have to pee because peeing is part of your bedtime ritual.

So, after picking you up from your toys in the living room, after your bedtime ritual, we put you to bed.  All is quiet for a little while, until the monitor chirps, and you’re dancing on your crib.

Cookie:  Mommy!  Daddy!  Take me to the bathroom to poo!  Take me to the bathroom to poo!

Mom: Scissors.

Me: Paper.  *sigh*

Me: Coming, Cookie!

As soon as your butt touches the toilet, however, you grin.

Cookie: I’m all done!  Let’s go play!

Nothing had come out.

Me: Cookie, you can’t lie to us.  You can’t tell us you need to poo if you don’t have to go!

Cookie:  I didn’t lie, Daddy.  I never said the poo was coming.

Potty Lies, Part 2

One night when you were 14 or 15 months old (sleep deprivation has really destroyed my memory), we picked you up from your toys, started your bedtime ritual, and put you to bed.

Over the monitor, we could hear you complaining.  “Mommy!  Mommy!  Mommy!  I don’t want to sleep.  I want to play.  I want to play with my toys in the living room.  It’s too early to go to bed.  I want to play!”

After a few minutes, Mommy got annoyed and answered over the monitor, “Cookie, it’s time for bed.  You’re done playing for tonight.”

On the monitor, we saw your grumpy frown as you settled down on your crib.  However, your head barely touched the pillow before you jumped up again.

“I have to pee.  I have to pee.  I have to pee!”  We could see you potty dancing over the monitor.

Mommy was fed up a this point.  “Cookie, you do not have to pee.  Lie down.  Close your eyes.  Go to sleep.”

With a cute frown on your face, we saw you slowly lie down.  The monitor was silent for a while until a whisper.

“How did she know?”