There are times that I feel that just because I'm a parent, I'm not supposed to have perverse thoughts. It's hard because I've been a perverse adult for far longer than I have been a parent. Somehow I thought that birthing two kids would grant me some kind of immunity to my past ways and deeds.
The absurdity of this notion was driven home while I was trying to read "Good Night, Gorilla" to the kids tonight. As per their usual they were doing everything but actually listening to the story. We call this the "getting their ya-yas out" portion of the evening. The kidlets run, screaming "Aaaaaahhhhhhh" at the top of their lungs, from one side of the room to the other, throwing themselves full-speed into the baby-gate that divides the usable part of their room from what we affectionately call the "forbidden zone." They alternately try to jump up and down on their beds -- ah, the joys of not having cribs, smack the forbidden window pane and throw all of their bed clothes on the floor. They also throw themselves headfirst at startling speeds into their beanbag chairs.
Now we bought these beanbag chairs sometime ago, just about the time when we realized that the kidlets had passed the weight limit on their jumperoos. They loved getting their evening bottle in them but, dreading it as we were, we knew it was time to move on. Mark thought that getting some beanbag chairs would be the answer and as usual Google and UPS saved the day. I did a search and found BeanBags.com -- yes a site devoted entirely to selling beanbags, checked out their merchant ratings, and after browsing for all of maybe ten minutes, ordered two toddler-sized chairs. Specifically this one:
Why red? Because that was the only color available at the time that I could stand. My other choices were lime and what seemed to be an electric orange and personally, those weren't cutting it for me.
So about a week later, the package arrived and opening it I said to Mark, "Oh my God, someone decapitated Elmo." We had these two HUGE furry red balls that looked like they would be at home on Sesame Street. Seriously, stick some eyes and a nose on them and you had, well, Elmo. And they were ROUND, just like his head. I hadn't thought that I'd be buying muppet-skinned beanbags based on the picture I'd seen, but there it was. I wasn't returning them, because we needed them so badly, but I was wondering if I'd made a dubious purchase.
We joked on and off for days about the kids thinking that we'd killed Elmo, but the novelty of it wore off as the beanbags got used. And used. And used.
Let me tell you, everyone, and I mean, everyone loved to sit on the beanbags. Every time folks came over, they would sit, lounge and lie on them. And the kids, well the kids loved the stuffing out of them. So much so that over time, the bean bags lost their firm round shape. In fact, the poor bean bags are now pretty sadly deflated.
Which brings us to tonight.
The kids were doing their usual "ya-ya" routine and Hunter grabbed one of the beanbags and started dragging it across the room. The bag's stuffing lay in the lower third and the piece she was holding was long and wrinkly and stretched... and suddenly my perverse mind no longer saw an innocent beanbag. Instead, I saw a giant scrotum. And not only was it a giant scrotum, it was one that belonged to our favorite muppet. I nudged Mark and, between lines, whispered "Why does that look like a giant ball to me?" And Mark, being as perverse as I am, grinned and said "Elmo LOVES you."
Now Aden and Hunter had putlled their sad deflated beanbags precisely side by side and started doing alternate face plants into what Mark had just identified via whisper as "giant Elmo balls." I could barely continue reading with a straight face. I was all of 16 again, all Beavis and Butthead "He said balls. Heh heh." Tears were streaming down my face as I was guiding Mr. Gorilla and his sneaky crew to Mrs. Hyena and Mrs. Giraffe's cages.
One day, when the kidlets are quite a bit older, perhaps after they're married, we'll tell them this story. I'm sure that if they remember anything, it will be the fun they had throwing themselves into those soft, welcoming beanbags and getting the last of their "ya-yas" out.
P. S. Before you think we have an inordinate fascination with Elmo, we both find him oddly disturbing which is why I guess we post so much about him.
P.P.S. Here are some recent pics of the kids to help get the thought of Elmo's balls out of your head: