This week’s blog post is by The Paternity Test co-host Matt Boresi, who lives in the Edgewater Glen neighborhood of Chicago with his wife (“Professor Foster”) and their 6-year-old baby, Viva, who will never be put in a corner.
Somebody in the Royal Family had a baby. Judging by my social media, this is something some people in this country care about. I could’ve sworn Lin Manuel Miranda won a war so that we wouldn’t have to care about these matters. We’re Americans, damn it, and we don’t allow our government executives to by chosen by divine right, bloodline or farcical aquatic ceremonies. We let the Russians pick our leaders. That’s democracy.
The media’s reaction to all this implies that people everywhere are purchasing Royal baby commemorative spoons and will soon be naming their own children after whatever this protoplasmic blob of monarchic holdover is called. I’m sure Elton John is rewriting a lyric as we speak. I’m aghast by this attention paid, but as long as I don’t have to pay taxes in Britain to support his Royal Highness Prince Meconium of Cambridge, I suppose I needn’t go throw tea into a harbor.
So, what babies DO I care about? I’ve made you a list, from the birth announcements that fail to stir my paternal instincts at all to those that cause me to run out and purchase a wipes warmer.
See how it compares to your own values.
10. The Royal baby
It’s worth noting that this particular regal infant will likely never trade its potty seat for the actual throne; he is fifth in line to the crown. Even by British royal standards, four people you have to lock in a tower, behead or drown in a cask of malmsey to get to the big chair is probably too many.
9. Muppet Babies (2018)
Pop-culturally, we’re living in the rebootiverse. Everything old is new again, but bad this time. Who is this penguin? Why is Angelica Schuyler singing the theme instead of our little felt friends? WHERE THE HELL IS SKEETER?
8. Baby, Secret of the Lost Legend
This largely forgotten 1985 movie about the mythical mokèlé-mbèmbé that turns out to be a surviving modern brontosaurus really lit me up in grade school. Hell, it had The Greatest American Hero fighting John Steed! In retrospect, though, the very notion of a brontosaurus is in doubt, let alone a family of them surviving in Africa, and it’s a real drag that the dad dino buys it. As with most ‘80s family movies, it’s got weird inclusions of sex and violence and now holds only a 14 percent on Rotten Tomatoes.
7. The Ballad of Baby Doe
This 1956 American opera by Douglas Moore has some enduring tunes, including the Willow Song that unfortunately isn’t Verdi’s Willow Song. I’ve always wondered if they shouldn’t just drop the recit and scene music and call it an operetta, though. It’s standard rep, but it’s just okay.
6. Jelly Babies
The favorite snack of Time Lords. Less sour than a Sour Patch Kid, less hard than a jellybean. Decent.
5. My friends’ babies before I had a baby
After we had our own babies late in life, some of my friends and I went around and apologized to our friends who had babies early in life, because we almost totally ignored their blessed events in favor of shotgunning Milwaukee’s Best and chasing girls with back tattoos. Now we get that we should have at least sent a card.
4. Baby Ruth
Peanuts, caramel, chocolate-covered nougat. It’s a solid candy bar and great frozen. A little tough to eat once you’ve seen “Caddyshack,” but still, a respectable mass-market snack.
3. Muppet Babies (1984)
Not only will they make their dreams come true, they’d do the same for you! Also, there were Star Wars references seemingly all the time (even a Tie Fighter in the opening credits). I have to ask again, what have they done with Skeeter?
2. My friends’ babies since I had a baby
See, now I get it. One loves one’s baby and it’s a big deal. Now I will get you a wipes warmer.
1. My baby
To be fair, even this one is a little qualified, as I’m a dad. Dads don’t like to admit it, but it often takes us a while to really attach to our newborns. If the baby grows inside of you and even feeds off of you afterwards, well that lends itself to some intimacy. If you’re the dad, you mostly read a half a book on parenting and installed a carseat and then you’re handed a baby. There’s still a relationship to build there. My baby, now 6, and I get along smashingly now, though. We’re closer every day. I even still refer to her as “the baby,” much to her chagrin and everyone else’s, a tic which will only grow more obnoxious as she gets older and I gradually become Jerry Orbach.
I care about my baby. I kind of care about your baby. The new Muppet Babies are an affront to us all, and the royal baby should really be deposed. I think we can all agree here, and if you find out where Skeeter is, please write in.
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