We have many, many baby products in the house now, and even the simplest of them comes with reams of warnings and instructions.  Generally I don’t pay much attention to them (do I really need to read instructions for a pillow?) but the one pictured above caught my eye.  Was this an admonition?  If so, for who?  Certainly not for the baby, because as far as we can tell kids these days just don’t follow instructions.  The parents?  Perhaps, but this is also an ineffective use of labeling: new parents seem to be overcome by sleep anytime they stop moving.  I prefer to think of this as a prediction: Warning, you will never sleep again, at least not the same way.  We have since been assured by experienced parents that this is the case.

On Sunday afternoon I was at the grocery store picking up a few things for dinner, and while waiting for the employees at Dave’s to do whatever it is they do when they are pretending to be cashiers, I tried to read the people in line.  The man immediately in front of me appeared to be extremely tired, always a potential sign of a new parent, and the things he was purchasing confirmed it: diapers, a baby bottle washer and a keg of Heineken.  We were similarly prepared for Everett.  By the time he arrived we had the nursery stocked and decorated, and had three carboys of Belgian ale bubbling away in the kitchen.

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