Well, I don't imagine this blog will ever turn into one of those "Daddy Blogs" where I recount the minutae of the parental life. Not that I have any issues with blogs of that nature—and not that my role as a father hasn't already crept into my fictional output—but I guess I'm not always as attuned to the day-to-day oddities of fatherhood as others.
But we've been trying to toilet train our son recently. It's an interesting experience. Apparently it's instuctive for Nicholas to watch people ... well, peeing. Guys especially, because the plumbing's the same. He won't be standing up to pee for quite some time—that's high-level-of-difficulty stuff for a toddler. And it's not like I'm taking him to public urinals and saying:
"Now watch this guy's technique—it's stellar! That's some great, great pissing on display there! Good shaking off, too, after the deed: not too showy, just enough to get the job done and get the tool back into the toolshed with no wetting."
No, no, there's none of that. I'm not saying it would scar him, I'm not saying it would not. Just doesn't seem the thing to be done.
But that means it falls to me. So now any time I feel the urge I announce with great fanfare:
"Time for Daddy to go pee-pee!"
Nicholas is greatly enthused by this. He puts down whatever he was doing and toddles on into the bathroom to watch. Now it's a weird sensation to pee in front of someone else—I recognize certain fetishists pay a pricey penny for the thrill, but for me, aside from standing beside dudes at the public urinals, it's not my thing. But now I've got this pint-sized gawker watching me pee. He's very intent, too, his eyes burning practically a hole in the toilet. He looks at my ... uh, thingie as I suppose I might refer to it for him, then into the toilet with the splashing and whatnot, then back up, then down, then up again and down like he's watching a ping-pong match. It's all very strange but hey, the boy's gotta learn somehow.
But then yesterday I announce it's pee-pee time and Nick follows me in and I'm halfway done and he kind of sighs and wanders back into the main room to play with his train set. I don't know if it was simply a weak showing on my part or, more likely, that he's like: I got it, Dad. Pee goes in the big white bowl. Check. Not to be a jerk about it, but it's kind of passe now. Booooooring.
I felt just a little hurt. Stung. I finished with a sad trickle and zipped up and looked in the mirror and said: "You still got it, baby" just to buck myself up after this ego-sapping blow.
So I guess my job is done on that front. I can check it off on the list. I'm sure I'll be doing something weird in the service of fatherhood again soon, however.