It’s something that I do every day at least a dozen times. I’m not proud of it, but it happens. I’m probably, at least in a small way, addicted to doing it. Usually, it’s a pretty non-eventful occurrence, but yesterday, it got messy. I removed my Blackberry from its case to check my messages and was confronted by a sight so disgustingly shocking that I almost vomited. Okay, so it probably wasn’t that bad, but it could have been tragic. My Blackberry could have been destroyed by an element that has become as much a part of my life as my first cup of coffee in the morning. I shouldn’t have been surprised in the least, but like everything else that I’m lately confronted with on a daily basis, it caught me slightly off guard. It probably had something to do with the sheer volume of it. It was gag-worthy and it completely covered my Blackberry and the inside of its case. It was the most drool I had ever seen, and I’ve seen a lot of it.
At some point during the day, as I was distracted with composing an email or making fun of my friend Rahul on Twitter, my son got possession of my empty Blackberry case. Doing what he does with everything, he apparently had his way with it. It was clear that at some point he must have had the entire thing in his mouth. Either that, or he merely used it as a spitoon and moved on. Jack is so infatuated with my Blackberry, that I often let him play with the case to distract him. Thus, I didn’t think anything of it when I saw him amusing himself with it on the floor next to the couch. He wasn’t eating a power cord or crying so I just let him go about his business while I typed away. Eventually, he got bored and moved on to trying to swallow the string from my hooded sweatshirt or something, and I picked up my case and slid my Blackberry inside without a second thought. I vaguely remember the outside being a bit wet, but that’s pretty much par for the course with anything around here. I dried it off on my pants and went on with my day.
Soon after, while fighting with Jack over some peas and waiting for my wife to come home, I decided to see if she had called or left me a text message. I grabbed my Blackberry while I let the crab-ass in the high chair decide between hunger and peas, and was completely shocked by my discovery. Someone call the Ghostbusters, I thought, because my Blackberry has been slimed. Then, just like in the movies, I had a flashback to the moments of the day leading up to this point. Me taking my Blackberry out of the case, Jack playing with it on the ground, me picking up the case, me putting my Blackberry in the case, and me wiping the case drool onto my pants. Son of a bitch. Don’t be drool, don’t be drool, I thought. Drool! Tons of it. Everywhere. It had obviously collected inside the bottom of the case and was dispersed over the entire smartphone instantly when I slid it back in. It was even oozing out of the top, and it smelled like formula and baby mouth. Then Jack suddenly laughed as if he did it on purpose, drool oozing down his chin onto the kitchen table.
Drool is ubiquitous in my life. It used to be that the only drool I had to deal with was on my wife’s pillow every morning. Now I find puddles of drool on our wooden floors. I find drool stains on every single article of my clothing, even if I’ve only been wearing it for ten minutes. Drool is on the remote control. Drool is on my laptop. Drool is on my headphones and my Ipod. There is often a pool of drool collected on his walker tray or in the back of Chuck, the talking dump truck. Bibs and onesies soaked with drool are strewn all over all three floors of my house. There is often even drool on the dog. I can’t escape it. Have you ever gotten someone else’s drool in your beard? I have–more times than I can remember. Cleaning it out is a gross task, but not as gross as drool dripping down directly into your open mouth below. Yes, I’ve also gotten Jack’s drool in my mouth; at least three times.
I love when we go places with carpet, like say my parent’s house or my in laws’. Carpet is a drooling baby’s best friend, or at least his parents. I just sit back and let that shit soak in like a floor sized sponge. Other people freak out about drool. I don’t even notice it. We’ll be over at someone’s house and they will practically lose it because drool is dripping down his chin. “Do you have something to wipe this up with?” they’ll ask, urgently or, “Hey! Hey! He’s drooling! Watch out!” I usually just tell them that yes, he is drooling, that’s what he does. It’s still odd to me that I’m so completely unfazed by drool and puke now, unless of course it’s glazing my Blackberry.
Being a new dad, especially one who spends just about every second of every day with my son, I’ve thought of a bunch of things that should be invented to help this whole child raising, baby adventure. Take for instance, what I like to call “Baby Hooks.” These would be hooks that you can place in every room of the house to hang your baby from. Your baby would wear a harness type contraption that would work with the hooks so that you can allow your baby to “hang out” and look around while you go about your business. I thought of this when he still had to be carried around everywhere but didn’t want to be set on the floor, however I think it would come in handy at the mobile stage as well. It never hurts to know where your baby is at all times, even if it means hanging on the wall. My other great brainstorm was for a baby drool catcher that I call “The Drool Strap.”
The Drool Strap would be like a modified football helmet chin strap. It would collect all of the drool into a receptacle that could be removed and emptied. I suppose if you wanted to “go green” you could also then use the collected drool to make the next bottle of formula instead of water. At the risk of making your kid look like a “special” baby, it could also actually be attached to a helmet, which would allow you to leave your baby unattended on couches and beds without fear of a head injury from tumbling off. It’s a win-win.
Coming up with The Drool Strap was not the last time I thought about collecting drool. I’ve often wanted to collect it for curiosity. I mean, how much drool can a baby actually drool? Am I the only one that wants to know this? It’s a discussion that we often have in our house. What if we did collect it? So, I think we are, and it’s all because of THE DROOL BET. I’ve been tossing around the idea of THE DROOL BET since before the holidays. We collect the drool for either a whole day or a whole week. Then, we make a bet. The loser of the bet then has to drink the drool. It’s so gloriously disgusting, and I’ve been trying to get my wife to agree to it. The other night I just so happened to catch her after a couple of Captain and Diet Cokes and got her to agree to THE DROOL BET. It all centers around the Super Bowl. If the NFC team wins, I lose big time and my beard will be covered in the slop. However, if the AFC team wins, I get to watch as my lovely, professor wife has to chug from the soon to be infamous drool cup. Sure, we probably won’t go through with it. But, I did go through with the mohawk and she went through with our marriage, so who knows? All I know is that THE DROOL BET is officially on! Go Jets!