The Golden Rules of Peeing in the Pool

Nikolai's birthday, August 12, at Century Link watching Alice 'n' Chains and Guns 'n' Roses

Nikolai’s birthday, August 12, at Century Link watching Alice in Chains and Guns ‘n’ Roses

This essay is from 7 years ago, but the website link is dead, so I’m reprinting, surrounded by family photos:

The Gold Rules of Peeing in the Pool

Before the Show, August 12. Century Link

Before the Show, August 12. Century Link

Since having children, my wife and I have fallen in love with the all-inclusive vacation. We sit by a pool, waitstaff bring us drinks, and when we want a break from the piglets, we put them in daycare. However, in Mexico, we had a little poolside confrontation. My wife and I lounged and watched Ava play with new friend 4-year-old Cody. To swim, Ava needs an inflatable ring. Cody saw her struggle, boasted he could swim “all by myself!”, then darted to the deep end to frolic with his mother. Ava had to pee, so my wife accompanied her to a nearby bathroom. When Cody returned, he asked why Ava had disappeared. I told him that Ava had to use the bathroom.

Gia and Kaya with Sana Nasim's gift

Gia and Kaya with Sana Nasim’s gift

Cody said, “Why doesn’t she pee in the pool?”

“Because you can’t pee in the pool,” I said.

“Yes you can.”

“You shouldn’t.”

“My mother told me I can.”

“No she didn’t.”

“Yes she did!”

My birthday, with

My birthday, with parents, kids, niece, and nephews (l to r – back, Nikolai, Ye-ye, Ava, front, Orion, Gia, Damien, Nai-nai, Kaya, Satori)

I asked, “Do you swim in your toilet?”

Cody stood unfazed, shook his head, and repeated, “My mother said I can pee in the pool.”

With this, he hurtled his body into the water and zoomed back to his mother’s side. My wife returned and I told her about the little varmint. We shrugged it off and focused on our daughters until Cody returned and announced, “Hey! I just asked my mom and she said it’s okay. I can pee in the pool if I want!”

Then he jumped in and remained almost motionless for what seemed like 30 seconds. I looked at the water in front of the kid’s shorts and almost saw an inversion of warm urine and cool water forming convection currents. The waitress placed a beer by my side as if on cue and I grabbed the glass, went into the pool, and trudged to where the mother leaned against the pool’s edge.

Dinner in Oak Harbor

Dinner in Oak Harbor with wife, sister Min, bro-in-law Stig, sister Sarah

“Hello. Um. I’m the father of Ava – the girl Cody’s playing with.”

“Oh, hi,” she said. We introduced. She hailed from Minnesota. We exchanged parental pleasantries, but before we went overboard praising offspring I said, “Cody told me he could pee in the pool, and that you gave him permission.”

I finished my beer with a large gulp.

Minnesota Mom said, “Yes. So? The pool’s chlorinated.”

I scrunched my face and closed my eyes for a few seconds, and then splashed and pushed water in her direction.

“Ahhhhh. I just relieved myself, but don’t worry, the water’s chlorinated.” I departed as expletives started to roll.

I returned and told my wife of the chat with Minnesota Mom, as well as my departing act.

2016-08-29 16.22.47

Gia at Layne’s Fixer-Upper

“You didn’t really pee, did you?” My wife asked.

I said, “Of course not.” (And this will be the version I’ll tell my offspring.)

The mother and her son already had started to leave the pool area, hopefully the wiser. Yet for all that, what had I learned? Sophisticated logic confuses the hell out of me, the philosophies of “treat others as you would like to be treated” and “what comes around goes around” could cancel out one another. And “turn the other cheek” is nothing more than a platitude. But I had a story for my daughters. I would tell them every aphorism has a time and place, yet these golden rules become morally ambiguous when applied to peeing-in-the-pool etiquette.

Perpendicular Video of Concert

 

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Gia Buttface

Ferry to Whidbey

Ava, Hazel, Gia, Kaya on the ferry to Whidbey Island

 

Wabbits!

Gia, Kaya, and Wabbits!

Surnames:  Gia asked me why our name was Powell and not Perkins (my wife’s maiden name). I explained. She said, “I guess I would be okay with changing my name to my husband’s. Except if his last name is really dumb. Like Buttface. If my husband’s last name was Buttface, then I’d stay with Powell.” Way to make a stand, Gia!

Uncle Sanjay, Gia, Friend Naomi holding cousin Devi

Uncle Sanjay, Gia, Friend Naomi holding cousin Devi

Instructing Kaya:  Kaya wanted to cook, and promised she could “do it all by myself!” Then she said, “But I’m going to need the destructions so I can know how to do it.”

Ava & Eye Shadow:  Ava emerges from her room with some mad blue eye shadow, Lilly Munster style. So I say, “What’s up with that?” Ava says, “I hate makeup, I’m just doing an experiment.” Whew, what a relief.

Seattle Storm

Seattle Storm

The Storm:  The Powell family went to a Seattle Storm game recently with girls I’ve coached, some since 3rd grade (they, not me). The Storm retired Lauren Jackson’s jersey after the game and the girls ran around court during a break. Gia exclaimed, “I got three feet away from Lauren Jackson! I’m so lucky!” I told her, “Or Lauren Jackson got three feet from Gia. She’s pretty lucky, too.”

Girls pictured L to R, Back row:  Maia, McKenna, Ava, Gia, Hazel. In front of Hazel are M’Kenzie and Naomi, and squatting is Jordan.

Basketball Camp

Basketball camp. Back row girls I’ve coached, Elise, Hazel, Ava, and Maia. Gia’s holding the ball, and Kaya’s sitting third from left.

 

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June Pictures

 

Born June 22, 2016 Devi Priya Chopra

Born June 22, 2016
Devi Priya Chopra

Explanation for just picture blogs: Busy life. But I’m still compiling sexist parenting humor, and sooner or later will have a full on post. For now, though, it’s pictures, pictures, pictures.

Kaya Gillin' w/Uncle Kevin

Kaya Grillin’ w/Uncle Kevin

Taking the girls to Whidbey and Tyla & Vince's Orchard Kitchen

Taking the girls to Whidbey and Tyla & Vince’s Orchard Kitchen

Kaya and the Purple Panthers

Kaya and the Purple Panthers

Sonic Boom!

Sonic Boom!

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May Photos

Sonic Boomers

Sonic Boomers

 

ESA 4th Grade Tigers

ESA 4th Grade Tigers

 

Gia and Mara

Gia and Mara

Best of the West

Best of the West

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The Powell Family in D.C.

Grandpa George at Arlington – Served in WWII, Korea, Vietnam

Vietnam War Memorial

Vietnam War Memorial

MLK Monument

MLK Monument

Kaya

Kaya

Gia

Gia

Ford Theater

Ford Theater

Ava

Ava

Mom & Kaya

Mom & Kaya

Wizards Game

Wizards Game

Holocaust Museum

Holocaust Museum

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The Pudding Momster

Top: Ava, Tyler, Markus Bottom: Kaya, Gia, Elliot, Jake

Top: Ava, Tyler, Markus
Bottom: Kaya, Gia, Elliot, Jake

Who’s Picky:  I just found out my wife, Terry, all of a sudden doesn’t like potatoes in soup. She enjoys good french fry, a well prepped tater dish, but doesn’t like taters  in soup. This is new. I’m picky but consistent. If I don’t like something, I don’t like it. But she can like a dish one month and a month later be sick of it. And she can like a food prepared one way but not another. And I’m not talking preference, but “delicious/disgusting” dichotomy. There’s no middle ground. Cooking for her is an existential nightmare (ok, not really, that’s hy”Terry”bole).

Kaya waiting for a rebound

Kaya waiting for a rebound

The Plastic Spoon:  We used to give our girls metal spoons for lunch for applesauce, peach cups, or whatnot, but they’d lose them after one or two days. So we went to plastic spoons.

Environmental Dilemma:  I’ve heard the plastic in the sea outweighs the fish, I have no idea if this is true, but the point is there’s too much plastic. So rather than throw ’em out, or recycle (which is overrated and inefficient), I’ve tried to get my daughters to bring them home. Fail. They thought washing and reusing plastic spoons was “gross.” Well, we solved it, they take metal spoons and have learned to bring them back. We may be destroying the planet, but not as quickly as we otherwise would.

Pudding:  My wife’s pickiness does not apply to chocolate pudding. Sunday evening mom brought home a container, we have a little, but there’s a viking’s portion leftover. Next day girls come home from school and discover an empty plastic pudding container (we recycle them, as much as I’ve tried to talk my wife into using plastic containers as bowls) in the trash. I told ’em the “pudding momster” must have eaten it.

Then and Now

Then and Now

Small World:  In the 50s my mother and John Dankowski went to the same high school in New Jersey. Fifteen years later they bumped on a street in Taipei.  John has known me since birth. We’re still in touch.

Photos:  My dad sent me the collage on the right.
Top Left:  1970, Taiwan, Dad, me, John Dankowski w/his wife.
Top Right:  Dad & John
Middle Left: 1970 Dad holding sister Sarah, John’s wife holding me.
Middle Right:  1970 Mom, Dad, Sarah, me.
Bottom Left:  2004, Taipei Del Christy (I met Del in the UAE) & John (who, except for a couple years, never left)
Bottom Right:  2003 Woodinville. Wedding w/Terry, little sis Min, bro-in-law Somjait, Mom.

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One Photo

One photo:  This month I was busy.

d

Quincy, Gemma, Kaya, Ava, Kate, Gia

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