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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

The 4-Year Old Goes from Student to Master


That day started out like any other.  Nothing really special.  But somewhere between Mickey Mouse Clubhouse (Oh, Toodles) in the morning and the reading of Bad Kitty for the 423rd time (even though I like that book)... something happened.

To the casual observer, that day was as normal as the rising and setting of the sun.  But, I'm not a casual observer (I mean, I am... but not for the sake of this story) and this was NO normal day (grammatical error intended).  For those who missed it, I experienced a game-changer in the Father/Daughter relationship.

First off, my 4-year targeted me.  I was minding my own business.  I was just being a good father.  I was thinking of my beautiful wife and kids and what I can do to enrich their lives (Do you believe that?).  Then there was this sweet little voice... "Daddy, I wanna play the ballgame." (for those not living in our house, that is Wii Bowling)  "I wanna pick 2." (again... for y'all (oh, yeah... I threw some Southern in there) that meant she wanted ME to play so there would be 2 people playing).

So we start bowling...  Everything is like it should be.  She bowled a 9-Spare.  I bowled a Strike (now that's what I'm talking about.  I'm technically winning)!  She then bowled a strike.  And I bowled an 8-Spare.  So we are tied now (technically she has the advantage at this point).  Then she makes the normal mistake of opening a frame (didn't knock down all 10 pens).  This is usually where I take control and ride this horsey to victory!  So I bowled an 8-Spare and felt pretty confident that the turning point in the game had just happened in the 3rd frame.  Well, it had.  Just not like I expected.  Here is where little Ms. Sneaky-pants pulled off the greatest "upset" since the Giants beat the Patriots in the Super Bowl.  Or since I found out they were cancelling Jericho.  Or EVEN since finding out the Flava Flav had any kind of TV show (especially one with women fighting for his love... WHAT???).

She started bowling strike, after strike, after strike...  It wasn't even funny anymore.  I would tell you the score but I passed out around the 7th frame when I knew I could no longer beat her.  I had already blocked it out of my memory by the end of the game until the little snot (and I say that with all of the love and affection than can be taken from that word) pulled her next move... "Daddy, take a picture." WHAT THE... Wait!  Take a picture???  For what?  Are you planning on framing the picture and putting it on one of those little motivational "FAIL" posters with sayings under it like: "When it comes to Wii Bowling... 35 is the new 3!" or "Daddy, bowling is not like baseball.  You are SUPPOSED to get strikes!"

I will NOT have that!  I am the MOTH!

She finally beat me for the first time. She also baited me.  She also hustled me. I didn't play her again for about a week.  She had gotten good but didn't let me know it.  And to add insult to injury, when I DID start playing her again, she would do the same thing.  She would play bad against her mom and sister but when it was time to play me she would get out some bowling shoes, a wrist brace, a monogrammed bowling shirt and a headband with the logo of her sponsor, Nike, stitched on it.

Since that day she has really stomped me a few times (including this one that she made me take a picture of while we were in Florida - I'll let you guess who is who).  If y'all (South again) were to watch her you would think she is just being an adorable, innocent little 4-year old that just has a knack for play Wii Bowling.  I'm not even going to try to convince you otherwise.  She's too good at what she does (not that you would believe me anyway).  But I will tell you this...I know better.  I know what her role is in the family dynamics as well as mine.  And right now, my goal is to show her that I will NOT be someone's motivational "FAIL" poster.