If you've seen my boys, or any recent pictures of the boys, you'll know that while the two older sons are somewhat well groomed, Elijah's hair has looked like a cross between a mullet and a bowl cut (a "bowllet"). The reason for this is that taking the boys to get their haircut is my job, and Eli is a such a pain at the barber shop that I just kind of let it go. Eventually his bangs got so long that Aimee held him down and cut them straight across... hence the bowllet.
Well, today, on our way back from the new indoor playland at the North West Street McDonalds (which on this cold rainy day was P-A-C-K-E-D), I decided to stop at one of those kiddy haircut places where the kids can watch a video and sit sports car while they get their hair cut. I thought that maybe if he was distracted, Eli would sit happily in a plastic jeep, not even knowing he was being sheered.
Man am I an idiot.
Have you ever wrestled a two year old, sitting in plastic jeep, being chased with a woman with sharp objects? The woman kept insisting that this wasn't the worst behaved child she'd ever dealt with... but I bet that's not what she tells her husband later tonight. What a fiasco. She asked how I wanted it, and I said "Short, so we don't have to do this again anytime soon." Now poor Eli looks like he's about to go into the Marines. What's more, after the torture of holding him down to trim his sideburns and neck, the woman poured baby powder down his back under the auspice of trying to keep him from itching. Now, covered in hair, dried tears, and baby powder, I'm sure Eli is dreaming about his revenge as we speak. I'll have to sleep with one eye open for the next week.
Ah, but you say I over exaggerate? Well, as I sit here pondering the bath I'll need to give the boy after he wakes up (apparently to wear out Eli you need to thrust into a playland with 3000 over-sugared kids who have all been cooped up during Christmas vacation and then sit on him while he vainly attempts to get away with the lady with the clippers) from his nap, here are the ten other things I'd rather do than take Eli to get another haircut:
10) Eat dark red kimchi with nothing but hot green tea to wash it down: Happened to me once in Seoul earlier this year. Rule of thumb is the darker red the kimchi is, the hotter it is. Good thing to remember if you are ever in Korea.
9) Ride with 13 teenagers in an enclosed, non air-conditioned van for 15 hours after they've had no hot showers in ten days in the dead of July: I thought a moose with bowel issues died in the back seat.
8) Move, anywhere, ever again: Remember, we're the family that this past June moved it's fourth time in four years, once while Aimee was nine-months pregnant, so I know what I'm talking about.
7) Walk a tightrope 300 feet in the air: I once got hives just thinking about climbing a ladder.
6) Go to a McDonald's Playland with 3000 other kids and their parents: It's a great facility, but yippin yimmini was that place nuts... and at 1pm in the afternoon on a Friday, none-the-less. Might well rename that "McGoldmine's" or "McSuretogetacold's".
5) Smoke a RG Dunn cigar: Way back before I was a pastor, a college buddy and I decided one night after class to go see a Reds game. This was back in the days when Riverfront Stadium was still standing, and you could buy tickets in the top six rows for $3. Well, it was in May we did this, and that night it was freezing. It was a less PC age where you could buy RG Dunn cigars from the concession stand for a quarter, and I don't remember whose idea it was that maybe a cigar and a cup of coffee would keep us warm, but like idiots, we bought 'em and lit 'em up. It was like chewing on one of Mr. T's old tennis shoes for the next three days. No amount of toothpaste could undo that horrible flavor. That's what you get when you buy a cigar for a quarter (it was overpriced) that was rolled in Lima, Ohio.
4) Run Down A Hill In My Underwear: Moral of this story is that if you are eight years old, wearing burnt orange corduroys about two sizes too large, when you mother tells you wear a belt that morning before you leave for school... do it.
3) Snort Chinese Hot Mustard Up Your Nose: Note to all 14 year old boys - It's not worth the 5 bucks your so-called friends will pay you to prove your manhood. Real (smart) men don't snort hot mustard.
2) Watch " The Navigator: A Medieval Odyssey": This is a movie about a group of people living in the 14th century who have to tunnel through the earth to 20th century New Zealand, where they need to fashion a gold cross to take back to their village in order to save it from the bubonic plague.... and I did not make this up. Now, if go out and rent this, don't say I didn't warn you.
1) Drive in Chicago, at rush hour, in an ice storm: Yep, I'd rather do this than take Eli to the barbershop... hence the inevitable return of the "bowllet" and the chance one day to taunt him with pictures on his prom night. Can't beat that with a stick.