I spent a good part of the afternoon driving. The children became disgruntled with me over something, like not giving them a bag of marshmallows, and began dueting on their favourite song. It is called "You're the Worst Daddy in the World."
If you would like to know the words to this song, they are contained, in entirety, within the song title itself.
I counter attacked with Leonard Cohen, who they both see as some sort of affront to Bob Dylan. I have explained countless times that Leonard and Bob are not really enemies, but they continue to ferociously defend the honor of the latter, while booing the very sound of the former. Sad. And embarrassing. Also, one of the advantages to jailing children in the back seat is that they can't access the volume controls.
So Leonard's powerful voice battled with theirs, rising higher and higher, until it was chelsea blue sky high.
And then: conferred whispering, which I could not hear because I was driving, and I am a very good driver. Then, the children's spokesperson announced:
"Guess what? We LOVE Leonard Cohen. We love Leonard Cohen so much."
- You LOVE Leonard Cohen?
I thought you didn't like him?
"Oh no, we love Leonard Cohen. He's our favourite. Turn it up, Daddy."
I was then forced to quickly decide: I had previously been using Leonard Cohen as disciplinary measure to show how they should never mess with me. But then if they LIKE him, that defeats the purpose of my authoritarian maneuver to establish supremacy. I had a feeling something wasn't quite right, but just to be on the safe side...
...I shut down Leonard Cohen, and with a friendly sneer, looked in the rear view mirror. "Say goodbye to Leonard, children, cause you're NOT listening to him anymore today."
They giggled with anger, and because they were upset, they had to find something else to do. Soon, the strains of "You're the Worst Daddy in the Whole World" filled the automobile, and I smiled, because they wanted Leonard and I took him away. They will not mess with me again soon.
I wonder what Edward Snowden is reading right now. I'd like to think he's a Victor Hugo fan. Since you brought it up, here's a link.
My Name is _______ (That's How You Open a Story, Kids).
I told the children a very abridged version of the classic several weeks ago. Interest piqued.
Example of my daughter's questions: "Why was Captain Ahab so angry?"
Example of my son's questions: "Was the whale bad? Did Captain Ahab have a gun or a sword? Did he have a lot of spears? Did his other leg get chopped off? Did the whale eat his arms? Why didn't the whale eat his head? Was he vegetarian? Did Captain Ahab fight the whale? Can we get a whale?"
Note: there really was an albino sperm whale called "Mocha Dick" in the 1830 off the coast of Chile. Melville was aware of this, but inexplicably changed the whale's name, ever-so-slightly.