Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Ask Kate & Lydia: To Breed? Or Not To Breed?

Dear Lydia and Kate,

I was amazed to read the following advice in the newspaper column of Hints from Heloise...

Dear Heloise,

In our busy world of bringing children to day care, shopping, etc., sometimes a child will fall asleep in a car seat and may be forgotten. In order not to forget a child, a woman should put her purse in the back seat next to the child. So many of us would never forget our purse, and this will be a reminder.

(name withheld)

I would like to thank this dear writer for raising such an important issue. The fear of short term memory loss has been the prime motivation for my decision never to have children. I mean, what if I left it on a bus? Would I be covered by insurance in the same way as other lost or stolen property? Or, while on a romantic date, what would would happen if I put my hypothetical child under the table with my purse and then forgot both of them? This has happened. My friend has a wonderful idea for attractive pegs that would keep a bag elevated by attaching it to the edge of a table, but she has not yet expanded the idea to include children.

I would greatly appreciate your thoughts on this pressing subject and whether or not you think I should continue to remain childless.

Yours in anticipation,




You know, I worry about this all the time. Mostly because Lydia can't keep track of her coffee cup and it winds up falling off the roof of the Big White Ford Tampon and then she runs it over.  I just lost a large amount of cash in my house and I only had it in my posession for about three minutes.  So this is actually a good question because you see, when you have children you become very, very stupid and forgetful.  So the concern that you might forget one of your kids is not misplaced.
Please keep in mind that when we dispense our sage advice, we suggest things like putting bacon on your husband's face while he sleeps and using refurbished flux capacitors for time travel (to avoid living in a crowded single-wide with your adult children).  So, we clearly provide guidance that is logical and realistic.  And also awesome.

That being said, we think it's really important that you came to us first.  Before you ruined your plumbing and lost half your IQ (especially without the handy-dandy useful invention of the Kid Hook). By the way, those little purse ones can hold like 623 pounds of purs-age. I should know. I pack mine like a damned Sherpa, and I don't even include things for my kids in it. Mostly lipstick. And an extra pair of shoes... One never knows where Daniel Craig may show up and I'll be damned if I'm gonna be in flip flops when that happens.

If the fear of forgetting one of your children somewhere is what's keeping you from having any, then we may have a solution.   There's already kid leashes and kid GPS thingy-s and kid backpacks and frontpacks and crazy slingy things that are like a hammock.

So, why not a kid training collar? Why not a set of family training collars?  Like the one that came with our zappy electric fence that my geriatric gimpy beagle used before he got too old to try and chase squirrels anymore.

[Which was awesome by the way, because he'd be so revved up to catch one of those dirty bastards, he'd blast right through the barrier and probably have a seizure or two but WTF he's chasing prey dammit. And then he'd try to come home and he couldn't get back because THEN he didn't want the jolt from getting too close. So he'd sit on the far side of the fenceline and whine until I turned it off. Stupid, stupid dog.]

Anyway, if your potential progeny wander off too far from you - *zap!* Even better, you can use it when they're being obstinate. Not setting the table? Take two steps back and *zappity zap!* If you're feeling particularly Samantha Steven-ish, you can make wavy fingers while you jolt 'em so they think you have magic powers. Point is, they'll follow you around like you're Justin Bieber.  After a while, they'll be so trained to keep you within, oh, say 10 feet or so, you'll never have to worry about forgetting them. Because they won't forget you. Ever.

But, that's not all.  Because Lydia lives in mortal fear of losing one of her children somewhere, she suggests giving them the zapper when they are being supervised by someone who may be a little distracted (teenage babysitter, Daddy with Blackberry, Mommy without requisite 6 cups of coffee).  Imagine you are at the playground and busy reading a really funny blog on your phone and sort of tuning out your kids who were very nicely playing the last time you glanced up...  and then *zap!* and you pee a little are now paying attention to the kids and not to your phone.

"Mommy.  I asked you four times to please push me on the swings and it was like you didn't even hear me.  How many times should I have to say it?"

Sometimes it's important to do whatever it takes to keep your family safe, even if that includes taking a little zap for the team.  And, after all, isn't that what being a mom is all about?

You're welcome.

xo Kate & Lydia

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  1. "So many of us would never forget our purse" because purses are so much more important than a human being.


  2. I. Love. It! Please market one immediately! You can market as 'The Turtle Herder' I bet it would work great for in the mornings when I dont even have my voice yet and constantly find myself croaking 'get. ready. for. SCHOOL!'

  3. I can get behind that. Everyone scoffs at my invisible fencing for kids idea. :/ Why not make it portable? With electronics today, you could make it so discreet that you won't get those looks from people. You know the looks I'm talking about.

  4. Oh. My. Gosh. We recently got a "training" collar for our pup, who can't seem to get it in gear. Peed in the floor? Zap. Chewed the kids' toy? Zap. After seeing the way little pup has gotten in line, I naturally started to wonder how I could get away with using a similar device on the children. Glad I'm not the only one tempted by this! (Since I guess this could *technically* be classified as "child abuse" or some such nonsense, I'll have to settle for just saying "ZAP" under my breath and wishing...)

  5. Yeah, right. Put your purse in reach of a child. That's a suggestion that's fantastic in theory and ridiculous in practice.

  6. I would totally buy a kid zapper. Not so up on the mommy zapper though, I'd be a drooling mess if they could zap when they want attention. It would scramble my braincells for sure.

  7. Purse packed like a Sherpa. Oh girl, me too! Everyone makes fun of me for it but I NEED 6 lipsticks (it's the only thing making me look alive), my little hairspray (because the baby messed my hair up again), Advil (kids are loud & I'm hungover), hand sanitizer (I don't know what my kids been touching & I don't want his germs), et cetera, et cetera...

  8. You make me laugh out loud all the time, and I so need that. I heart you guys big time. Thank you for the new vocab, which I'm trying out on everyone - husband, mom, pentagon colleagues. Today, I wanted to square up and kick someone in the hoagie (loved the MIL adaptation from this weekend). And between you guys and Mika from Morning Joe - you make me want to be a better bitch. Thank you for everything. Big hugs.

  9. You aren't wrong about Daniel Craig just showing up in a random location. I was just at a restaurant in a little town with a population of like 9 people and he totally came in for dinner. He was shooting a movie in the area. I was wearing flip flops and had grilled cheese sandwich in my hair (thanks baby)...oh ya and was with my husband. I gawked from a distance. My husband just kept saying "holy crap James BOND is here" in an awed stage whisper.

  10. I have always wanted to get one of those zapping fly swatters to use on my kids when they aren't paying attention or doing something stupid but my husband won't let me, something about laws and abuse. I think he's just afraid I'd use it on him. He's right though, freakin' wuss!

  11. BRILLIANT. I took my two-year-old daughter on holiday last week (coincidentally, right when this post was published) and we had our first run of the backpack/leash combo. It worked well, but a shock collar would be even yesser.




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