Sunday, March 18, 2012

Drunks, Fools, and Infants

Recently I have had cause to believe that these may have a lot more in common than just the fact that God is supposed to be looking out for them. In particular, living with an infant - or a toddler/preschooler - is not unlike hanging out with a mean 4 am boozehound, twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week.

I don't spend a lot of time at bars around closing time these days. And when I say "a lot", I mean "never." But at one point in my life I did, and there's always some person - usually a guy - getting belligerent, being held back by a couple of friends, throwing air punches and bellowing. His counterpart on the other side of the chromosomal aisle is either puking in the bathroom, being propped up by friends because her legs have all the functionality of a mermaid's tail, crying, or some combination of the three. She may or may not have just gotten into a slap fight with another girl.

The realization that I see many of these same behaviors on a regular basis with my two-year old convinced me that I was onto something. Here is a partial list of similarities between small children and their inebriated elders:

1.) Both fall down a lot/are prone to jelly legs

2.) Both have lots of unexplained bruises

3.) Both are unreliable witnesses:
     You: Are you drunk?
     Drunk person: No.
     You: Seriously. Are you drunk?
     Drunk person: Yes. (Giggles.)

     You: Did you just pee in the corner?
     Kid: No.
     You: Seriously. Did you just pee in the corner?
     Kid: Yes. (Giggles.)

4.) Both have large, inconvenient memory lapses:
     You: Where are your pants?
     Drunk person: Dunno.

     You: Where are your pants?
     Kid: Dunno.

5.) Both find their own antics and bodily functions to be extremely entertaining (e.g. "I'm not wearing pants and I'm dancing!" "Fart!")

6.) Both think totally random things (e.g. toothbrushes, squirrels, doorknobs) are totally hilarious and/or menacing

7.) Both wind up with bedfellows whose names are not entirely clear.
     Drunk person: Sarah - your name is Sarah, right?
     Girl in bed: Susannah. Sarah is my roommate.
     Drunk person: Oh yeah. Sarah. She was hot.
     Girl in bed: (shoots drunk person dirty, incredulous look)

     Kid: (in bed, surrounded by stuffed animals, hugs a rabbit) Rabby!
     You: Is that Rabbit?
     Kid: No. French fries!
     You: The rabbit is named French fries?
     Kid: No. Rabby! (shoots parent disbelieving, you-are-so-stupid look)

8.) Both end up slurring a lot/using non-traditional pronunciations of words:
     You: What do you want to drink?
     Drunk person: Glashoofwaddah.
     You: You want a glass of water?
     Drunk person: (nods, mumbles) Mmmph, Glashoofwaddah.

     You: What do you want to drink?
     Kid: Mimi Fresick!
     You: You want lemonade and Fresca?
     Kid: (nods, yells like you are an idiot) Mimi Fresiiiiiick!

9.) Both frequently fall asleep in their clothes

10.) Both have a tendency to go from giddy to ornery in the span of about 6 seconds

11.) Both are subject to delusions of control/think they can do things they, in actuality cannot do:
     Drunk person: I can fly. I'm totally going to climb this building. I should run for president.
     Kid: I can fly. I'm totally going to button my sweater. I should transfer this cup of milk into my Crocs.

12.) Both send inconvenient and incomprehensible text messages at odd hours
     Drunk person (3:30am) to ex-girlfriend: I hate you. Wanna comeoverand seemeyurso cute?
     Kid (5:30am) to your boss: soiejsesoijlesijjijjjjjjosikkm

13.) Both have odd paranoias/obsessions
     Drunk person (in car): if you get a pizza, don't get it with olives (dozes off, wakes up suddenly). Did you get pizza? With olives? I'm gonna freak out, man. I said no olives. I don't want olives. Seriously dude, I'm going to freak out if you got olives. Do you think my ears look bigger? They feel bigger. You're not looking. (Tries to grab the wheel.)
     Kid (at restaurant): No eat pizza. Spiders. Stinky poo poo. Pizza, nooooo! (Throws glass of water on the floor.)

14.) Both easily become totally fixated on random things
     Drunk person: Can you believe we ran into that guy from the gym? Should I have given him my number? Do you think he likes me? I should have given him my number. He's hot. Do you think he likes me? Did I sound stupid? Maybe I'll text him. Should I wait to text him? I should have worn my red shirt. This shirt makes me look fat. Do you think I look fat? He's totally hot, isn't he?
     Kid: Mimi Fresick! Mimi Fresick! Mi-mi Fre-sick! MIMI FRESICK!

15.) Both repeat things a lot
     Drunk person: I love you, man. You're the best. I hope we get pizza. (dozes off, wakes up suddenly) Hey man, I love you. You're the best. Are we getting pizza?
     Kid: Bert and Ernie! Bert and Ernie! Bert and Ernie! Bert and Ernie! (runs into other room, comes back) Bert and Ernie! Bert and Ernie! Bert and Ernie!

16.) Both pick fights, usually at random, often out of nowhere
     Drunk girl: Why didn't you tell me this shirt makes me look fat!
     Kid: (grabs other kid's face on the slide)

17.) Like Austin Powers after the un-freezing process, both have difficulty controlling the volume of their voice.

18.) Both are prone to magical thinking and/or non sequiturs:
     You: How exactly are you going to get home?
     Drunk person: Tele-portron. Tele-fusion. Guddammit. (mumbles, points to the sky, enunciates very carefully) Tele-por-tation. Like on Star Wars. Star Trek.

     You: How did mommy's keys end up in the fish tank?
     Kid: Rocket ship.
19.) Both are prone to projectile vomiting

20.) Both ultimately treat you like a total fool for trying to offer them advice or help. Hopefully that scores you some protection, too - from the projectile vomit, if nothing else.
     Drunk person: Wannanother beer.
     You: Here's a glass of water.
     Drunk person: Pffff. Water. Humph.

     Kid: Hungry!
     Parent: Try this mango. It tastes delicious.
     Kid: No mango. Freaky! Stinky poo poo.

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