Racing through the years

Today was Matthew’s birthday, although we did most of the celebrating on Sunday. Kim had to go out of town this week, so she asked him if he would mind having his party a few days early, so she could be here to celebrate with him.

As expected, he had no objections to opening his gifts three days ahead of time. The only issue was the theme. Each year, we let each of the boys choose a theme for his party, then decorate the living room and try to find a cake and wrapping paper in the theme. This allows us to keep them in line, as whenever they act up, we threaten to switch to a Barbie theme. Or worse, Justin Bieber.

As of a little more than a month ago, there was no question as to what Matthew’s theme would be this year — he’s been absolutely crazy for Pokemon since discovering it/them last summer, so we weren’t surprised when he requested a Pokemon theme.

But that changed when we took the boys to see Cars 2 at the end of June. Suddenly, everything had to be about Cars. We’d already bought some Pokemon stuff, but that’s okay — Party City is good about giving refunds. But when he changed his mind again, we were worried they might be starting to get sick of us.

Pokemon. No, Cars. No, Pokemon. He couldn’t decide. So we opted for Pokecars — streamers, banner, dangles and wrapping paper in Cars; balloon and cake in Pokemon. It was going to clash, but who cares? It’s all tacky crepe paper, anyway. Besides, no one ever comes to our house. It’s too embarrassing.

So we did the dual decorations, took him out for lunch Sunday, and brought him back for gifts and cake. He enjoyed the rest of the day, playing hard and being certain to hit every new toy before bedtime. Kim left last night, and I woke up this morning wondering how our baby could possibly be six already.

I mean, six — it might not sound that old, and it’s not a milestone ending in 5 or 0, but it’s significant. Kindergarten’s behind him now. His teeth are ready to start falling out. He won’t let me call him “Little Man” anymore. He’s done with early childhood vaccinations (and doing fine, thank you, Jenny McCarthy). Hell, he’s done with early childhood, period.

But that doesn’t mean the best years are gone. At any rate, he’s not too old for playful ideas. He came up with this one on Sunday:

There must be some youth left in him somewhere, right?

Or maybe it’s just his Y chromosome….


About Dan Bain

Dan is an award-winning humorist, features writer, emcee and entertainer from Raleigh, NC. His collection of humor essays, A Nay for Effort, has earned him fans from one end of his couch to the other. Why not join them and buy one? (You won't have to sit on his couch.) Dan will donate 10 percent of the book's proceeds to education. You can check it out at; thanks!
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2 Responses to Racing through the years

  1. hugmamma says:

    Love, love, love this post…my daughter does too. While digging through my bottles of nail polish, planning to take a couple with her to paint her nails at the Denver Airport where she has a 2 hour wait for a friend to fly in from California, so the two can head off to Beaver Creek, I read this aloud to her.

    We had a good laugh at the theme-changing near catastrophe. Your solution to the problem also gave us a good chuckle…as did Calamity Bain’s youtube. To which my daughter said…”if we would all maintain our child mentality…life would be simpler.” I think I’ve got the next “Dear Abby” living with me…only part-time, of course. She’s on her own…well sort of. Ballet dancers don’t make a ton of money. 🙂

  2. Dan Bain says:

    Thanks! The boys came up with the idea to race the cars on the treadmill; I just recorded it. But it was fun to watch them!

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