First off, welcome to the person from Pennsylvania who found this blog accidentally by doing a Google search for "five across your lip." I love the fact that when that classic phrase is typed into Google, this blog is the first result. I like to think that Fred G. Sanford is looking down upon me and thinking, "What a dummy."
So, I'm talking to Mr. Z tonight as he's getting ready for bed and he asks:
MR. Z: Dad? How come sometimes, when you tell me to stop doing something, you're smiling and kinda laughing?
It's over. He's found my fatal flaw -- my achilles heel -- the Colonel Klink in my armor. It happens all the fucking time. He'll be engaging in some really wrong, spazzmotic behavior and, suddenly remembering I'm a dad, I'll be forced to tell him to stop doing said spazzmotic behavior. Unfortunately, nine-times-out-of-ten, I find whatever he's doing to be pretty fucking funny. It usually involves him dancing around naked, pointing his shvantz where it shouldn't be pointed, making fart noises, pretending two round, orb-like objects are breasts/balls, contorting himself into some pretzel-like shape in a strange place, singing some mildly offensive song at the top of his lungs -- basically being ME at age seven.
I'll know that I'm supposed to tell him to stop, and most of the time I'll get out a "Mr. Z, would you stop doing that, please?! You're going to hurt someone/yourself/your voice/your genitalia!" But sometimes, when the thing that he's doing is just SO me, I smile/laugh as I'm attempting to parent and I usually have to turn away or bolt into another room so as not to dilute my 'serious message.' Well, I guess I don't have to hide it anymore -- he's been on to me the whole time. Sneaky bastard.
It's tough, because he really is a lot like I was as a kid, poor guy. I was very goofy, spazzy, bizarre, annoying, just like he is now. The problem is, I tended to take it too far... a lot. Any time there was a scene that involved me fucking around and laughing hysterically, it usually ended up with me bawling my fucking eyes out. Which is why I get on his case a lot when I see him heading toward that inevitable crash and burn. I want to head him off before it all blows up in his face. Like, if I could just stop him from dancing naked like a moron as he runs down the hallway, I might just be able to prevent that scrotal rug-burn that's lurking around the corner.
But I suppose it's also my job as a parent to let him get scrotal rug-burns. That's an important part of growing up. So I guess that's why I'm smiling when I'm telling him not to do something. It's just my way of saying, "Dude, you remind me of myself... and boy are your balls going to hurt in about 20 seconds."