The boys have been asking to hear stories about themselves lately, for which I blame my neighbor; she just had a baby, and of course a new baby inspires lots of conversation about when OTHER babies were born. Charlie’s arrival was fairly mundane, but Henry’s was pretty dramatic and makes for a better retelling, especially the part about how the umbilical cord was WRAPPED AROUND HIS NECK and how I didn’t know that for days after he was born.
But that’s a story for another day.
Charlie, frustrated with the fact that his birth story consists of absolutely NO drama and only an assertion that he cried and cried and it was a lovely sound (Henry never cried in the delivery room), has asked repeatedly for OTHER BETTER stories about himself. “Funny stories, Mama — tell a FUNNY STORY about me.”
This is my favorite: when Charlie was 20 months old, we went to Florida to visit my brother and his wife. Charlie slept in a play pen in my brother’s office, which was across the hall from the dining room and didn’t have any proper doors. One night, long after the boys were in bed, the adults sat at the table drinking wine and talking. John was doing laundry, because he had a meeting in the morning; when we heard the buzzer on the dryer, he jumped up to pull his shirts out before they wrinkled.
And as he walked past the office to go to the laundry room, Charlie popped his head up over the side of the Pack-n-Play and announced, “CLOTHES ARE DRY!” and scared the living hell out of my brother.
Which of course is why it’s funny!
(He also used to say, “Dinner’s ready!” every time the microwave dinged, which I swear made my mother-in-law cry at least twice because MICROWAVED FOOD IS NOT DINNER. In my defense, he would say that no matter what was in the microwave — chicken nuggets, popcorn, my coffee, it didn’t matter. He always announced that dinner was ready.)