SHOWER THE PEOPLE
There are not too many things you need to really fear before the baby is born. Most of that will occur one millisecond after birth. But there is one occurrence that will send your mind reeling for the best excuse you have manufactured since that dent in the family Buick during your junior year of high school: Showers. Not the kind that cleanse, the kind that bequeath.
Bestowing blankets, outfits and bassinets; conferring rattles, diapers and receiving blankets (are there kicking blankets too?). Then there are the other items you are given that bare a slight resemblance to some of the crude instruments they used in Quest For Fire.
With these you are expected to proudly hold them up and profusely thank the gift giver. This becomes very tricky when you do not have a clue what is in your hand and you are not even sure you are holding it up correctly.
The worst part is, everyone else in the room appears to be very aware of its function in the new baby realm. Well, that is except for all the other men at the shower who have gravitated to the family room and are watching the Warriors versus Lakers game. Warriors up by 7 with three minutes left in the third, Draymond has 4 fouls.
And lest we forget the games, ahh the games. Unbelievably tedious contests that are designed to reduce all the participants brains to marshmallow parfait. Word games, name games, something strange that involves sleepwear and another one that incorporates newspaper, a baby rattle, some twine and a colander.
It is at times like this when you learn who your real friends of the alternate gender are. Your true female allies are the ones who do not throw a co-ed baby shower. Forget rattlesnakes, scorpions and the HR department, this is truly one of man’s biggest fears.
When you see these two words you need to come up with some of your more creative, full proof excuses. “I don’t want to go” will not work when the spouses of some of your wife’s best friends are going. It needs to be solid and irrefutable. “I will be on a plane that day to negotiate a peace settlement between Ernst and Young…Bumgarner is having trouble with his hanging slider and Bochy needs me at the ballpark that day…My boss says we have to work all weekend on our presentation… what was the date of that shower again?”
In the end you will probably go to the co-ed baby shower, and toil through all the various festivities. How bad can it be? You posit that other friends have survived, and you will too. That’s the spirit. Be brave!