Next Thing You Know I’m Going to be Singing Kumbaya or Some Other Bullshit

Certain DC Metro stations are burrowed deep underground – did you know that the Wheaton station has the longest escalator in this hemisphere?  For the deepest stations, it is substantively faster to catch the elevator. One of my locals sits about a hundred yards above one of these stations.  As a gentleman who favors expedience and preparation, I tend to know the exact rail car to board to be among the first to reach the elevator. 

There were four people and a toddler who rode with me: three 40 something women, an early thirtysomething and her barely talking child.  The young mother was struggling to get mittens on her son as he utilized the favorite word in any child’s vocabulary – No.  It went on this way for a few moments as he clinched and moved his tiny fists away from his mom.

Maybe it is the spirit of optimism surrounding Obama’s inauguration, but, for some reason I found this scene endearing.  “Look at me” I smiled “I’m putting on my mittens.”

“We’re all putting on our mittens” said the woman to my left as everyone nodded agreement while donning their gloves.

“Yes we are putting on mittens” I refrained in a toddler specific tone that emerged from a part of my soul I do not acknowledge. 

Mittens were secured and then I learned that he had more vocabulary.

“High fife mittens?” he shouted with an outstretched hand.

“Yes, high five for mittens” I replied with a slap to his celebratory little hand.


20 Responses to Next Thing You Know I’m Going to be Singing Kumbaya or Some Other Bullshit

  1. SingleGirl says:

    Are you losing your edge?! I like it.

    Contrary to even my own protestations, I actually like small humans in extremely small doses.

  2. Fearless says:

    If I didn’t know better, I’d accuse your biological clock of ticking.

    No such thing for me. If there were a male version of nuva-ring, I would already be taking it.

  3. Lemmonex says:

    I am not an overly kid-type person but sometimes I will catch myself smiling at some random baby and I want to stab myself.

    I only start searching for rusty spoons with which I will remove an eye after minute two.

  4. Sara says:

    ‘No’ is the favorite word for the first child, as soon as the second comes along it is replaced with ‘mine’. After that, they are completely ready for adolescence.

    As the younger or two children, this rings somewhat familiar.

  5. Kristin says:

    I love the idea of a high five for mittens. When I’m no longer sick and am back in the office, I’m going to try that.

    I love the idea of having high fives for all of the simple things that bring us joy, though I would prefer to clink glasses filled with an adult beverage as a celebratory gesture.

  6. I-66 says:

    You’ve done a good thing. I believe it was Whitney Houston who said “I believe that children are our future. Teach them well and let them lead the way. Now where’s my crack pipe?”

    Point of clarification, sir, George Benson sang it first and better.

  7. The more I read, the more I’m learning that you can strike up a conversation with just about anyone, and not just the attractive woman sitting alone at the bar. High five for mittens!

    I feel like I just got an e-Card that says “Wow, your only half as shallow as I thought.”

    I would use some sort of winking emoticon here just to underscore the fact that this was meant in humor, but gentlemen don’t use such things.

  8. Shannon says:

    Wouldn’t it really be a high-two, if everyone is wearing mittens?

    Really a High 3.5 because I was wearing gloves.

  9. deutlich says:

    That is just too damn cute.

    The kid was pretty damn cute.

  10. f.B says:

    I don’t usually go high with my fives. But done your way, it sounds genius.

    I generally refuse to high five anyone over the age of six.

  11. [F]oxymoron says:

    You are a better man than I will ever be! I would have been chuckling, or at bare minimum, miserably failing to conceal my patented “birth control gone wildly wrong” smirk.

    Like I said, it must be the lingering optimism or something.

  12. OK- so sugary sweet that I almost got diabetes but I loved this story.

    I almost slipped into a coma while writing it.

  13. laloca says:

    that was very sweet of you, and i’m sure the mother was appreciative.

    one reason i’ve never bred is because i fear my tendency in such a situation would be to let the child get frostbite.

    Everyone else in the elevator helped too. And if I were to list all of the reasons why I have never bred, I am not sure the interwebs have enough memory.

  14. Kevin says:

    I have a vision of the future: Refugee and Mini Refugee sitting at a bar, One of them sipping Scotch the other with a sippy cup of milk hitting on the ladies.

    Among the reasons this could never be true is that it was funny enough for me to snarf the Prosecco I am drinking before noon.

  15. christ.. i get to the party a teeeeeny bit late… and all the prosecco is gone.. great…
    and…yeah im thinking your sweet spot is bigger than you let on…

    ummmm..that sounds kinda dirty but im leaving it anyway

    As sure as the eagle flies on Friday, the Prosecco pours on Friday mornings whenever possible – breakfast of champions and all.

  16. lacochran says:

    I had the exact same reaction as Fearless.

    Me? By the third “NO!”, I would have decided to switch cars at the next stop.

    I assure you that if there is a biological clock ticking, it is some timer set to detonate a bomb exploding my life.

  17. kjohnsonesq says:

    Ha! I knew you had it in you. But I can’t decide if I am disgusted or about go get all mushy.

    I really think that you are just seeing virtue in vice.

  18. You are too cute.

    The kid was cute; I was just doing a solid for the mom.

  19. ella says:

    my daughter mastered “no” quite early and at age 10 the word still captivates her. when my son was small, i taught him five sign language motions: yes, no, milk, more and pain. not only was it kind of trippy to communicate with a 15 month old so easily, it saved me from having to hear “no” all the time. a tiny balled up fist shaking back and forth is easier on the nerves than the shrill cry of NOOOOOOOOOO.

    I think that all toddlers should be required to learn sign language for precisely this reason.

  20. Lisa says:

    This is so completely adorable. I am rarely moved to interact with random kids, but every once in a while one is so super cute that it really pulls you in.

    I maintain that my body was possessed by some alien life force.

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