Last Friday night the Missus and I decided to experiment with something new.
I’d been lurking in the shadows of the internet, typing things like “The kids are driving us crazy! What can we do besides hire someone to kill us and put us out of our misery? Oh God, they’re at the bedroom door again, knocking and calling for ‘Daddy’ and asking why the sky is blue and why their pants are suddenly heavy and full of brown and whinging about being hungry again. All they ever do is complain about being hungry and acting like we should feed them. Help!”
It was a pretty specific search term, and it resulted in a pretty specific search result:
I did research on this counter-culture concept that lurks in the dark underbelly of the tubes that make up the internet, and it actually sounded like a good idea.
OK, it didn’t sound like anything to me other than getting away from the kiddos, and that’s the only sound I wanted to hear.
So last Friday night was date night for the Missus and I.
There was only one component to date night that we had to plan in advance:
How to ditch the kiddos?
Since Child Protective Services has informed us they will take the kiddos away if they catch us putting them in their Skinner boxes again, we had to come up with an alternative stowing plan:
Except babysitters cost money.
And tend to be teenage girls, and really, how trustworthy can a hormone-flooded teenage girl be? Especially one who is watching your kids not out of maternal instinct, but due to the cold, hard capitalistic urge to make money?
And paying an older male to watch your kids? Feels creepy.
Plus, still costs money.
How to overcome these obstacles? Why, in the most cost-effective way possible! Time for:
Operation: Overnight with the Grandparents
Or, as the kiddos put it:
Overnight with the Grump-parents! YAY!!!!! *run around house in excitement, crashing into walls and generating more bruises to explain away to CPS*
The best part of having the grumps watch the kiddos?
Also, they apparently have actual ‘feels’ for their grandchildren, which makes them far less likely to eat them.
Or sell them on the black market.
And if they did sell them on the black market, being family they’d most likely give the Missus and I a cut.
Note to self, though: if kiddos go missing and my parents offer us leftovers, skip the leftovers.
Once we had the kiddos safely stashed away in a CPS-approved storage facility (well, assuming they never find out about my parents’ felony convictions for child endangerment and capital murder (before you judge – overturned on appeal!)), the Missus and I escaped into a carefree evening of dinner and a movie.
Right after I took down the new tent.
You see, we got a ginormous 8-person tent for the next family camping trip, as the 4-person is too small for four people when they are two adults and two toddlers.
Yeah, I was surprised too.
And once I buy a tent, I friggin’ put it up right away, before any actual trip, to make sure all the parts are there.
That Everest base camp tragedy is never happening again.
Normally, I’d tell the Missus she was my ‘one all, be all’ and deal with the tent the next day, but the forecast called for rain, and the tent instructions were very clear about making sure the tent is dry when you put it away to avoid mildew.
And who wants to go camping in a musty tent reeking of mildew and BO?
Yes, BO. You try camping for a week without access to showers and not have body odor issues. I wish you the best of luck.
So dinner was a bit of a rushed affair, because the tent is big and took longer than expected to pack up and the movie started at 8.
But fast food can still be romantic if you bring a candle with you to the restaurant.
And don’t sit too close to the play area in the back.
Because the sound of screaming, yelling kids?
Kills the date night mood.
The movie was The Grand Budapest Hotel, the latest movie from Wes Anderson.
And let me say, it is much better than his other movie, Scream.
And a lot less scary.
I highly recommend it.
All in all, a delightful evening free of toddlers screaming, poking, and whining. If you are afflicted with children, I highly recommend this date night concept.
I have a feeling it’s a trend that just might take off.
And hey, just a head’s up that on April 1st and 2nd I’m having a book signing!
It’s all part of #DSN50 and #NASASocial.
Come find me while I’m touring JPL and/or the Deep Space Network, and I’ll answer any questions you have and sign books.
Heck, the book I sign doesn’t even have to be one of mine. I’m not that particular.
Now if you do want me to sign one of my books, and you don’t already have a copy, you should know I’m not planning to have any books for sale.
The only copies I’m bringing with me are for friends in the area.
But if you offer me enough money, well, screw my friends.
Only one catch: you have to be a US citizen to get on the sites I’ll be at.
Oh wait, another catch: you have to be on the list of US citizens being allowed on the tours.
Unless you work there. I suppose if you work there, you could find me.
Especially if you work for Security. Security is always finding me, everywhere I go. So if you work for Security at NASA, it’s a good bet you can find me.
Unlike those chumps at the FBI. They’ve yet to find me! Muhahaha!
But other than that, it’s all-Ian, all-access, all-morning.
Oh yeah, if you have trouble finding me, don’t ask the #DSN50 event organizers.
They have no clue about my book signing event. They think this event is all about celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Deep Space Network.
Seriously though, don’t ask. You might get me kicked out.
Also, on an unrelated note: I have two Skinner boxes for sale. Cheap.