b Papa Dog's Blog: Going to the Sippy Cups, Part II (Getting there Against All Odds)

Papa Dog's Blog

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Monday, November 07, 2005

Going to the Sippy Cups, Part II (Getting there Against All Odds)

So, 2 p.m. came around and Baby Dog still wasn’t up. I opened the door to her room so that the sound of her parents talking and bustling about might seep through the veil of sleep. Sure enough, she was awake and calling out to us within ten minutes. We had made 2 p.m. the cut-off time, but we figured we had a little wiggle room. Mama Dog whipped up some victuals and I got them into the girl as speedily as possible. Then off we went to the Town.*

Mama Dog’s cell rang as we were performing the minor miracle of turning left onto Market. It was Papa Pirate. Guess what? That’s right, they couldn’t make it. Their car had pooped out as they neared the bridge and it turned out that Baby Pirate, who’d not had a nap all day, was sound asleep in her car seat anyway. They were headed home. This was genuinely ironic, unlike most of the examples mentioned in that Atlantis Morrissette song.**

The combination of the venue and the act would probably cause Mr. Brownstein’s gorge to rise; the Sippy Cups were playing for a packed house of kids and toddlers in the Rickshaw Stop, a fully-stocked bar. I’ll pause here to contemplate a moment. I keep thinking that parenthood has led me to go places and do things that would have been outside my imagining only a few short years ago. I made, for example, the startling discovery that those previously unnoticed establishments on either side of that bar on College were baby stores. I have engaged in baby talk while a dermatologist was whacking a cyst off my face. I have wiped someone else’s ass on a public thoroughfare. And yesterday I found myself in a bar packed with five-year-olds pogoing along to Blitzkrieg Bop. O brave new world that has such people in it.

We found ourselves a spot in the balcony where Baby Dog could get a view of the stage. After a few minutes of peering out between the bars, she turned to me and said “Out? Out?” I think she was a bit claustrophobic, with all the noise and the crowd. She’s used to more sedate pastimes and this was probably overstimulating. She said “Out? Out?” periodically throughout the experience, leaving me unsure how much she was enjoying it. But she does like music, and seemed to like bouncing up and down and dancing with Mummy and Daddy. She’ll probably like these scene more when she’s more independently ambulatory. The thing about The Rickshaw Stop is, it’s filled with rickshaws. We plonked ourselves down in one and Baby Dog had herself a sippy cup (not a Sippy Cup) full of apple juice. She seemed happier after that.

The band is good and fun and a lot easier on a forty-year-old’s cerebral cortex than, say, Barney. They did a suite of superhero songs, which was kind of funny. They did the theme from Spider-Man, only with the the guitar part from Secret Agent Man, clearly a sop to old geek dads like myself. Damn them for knowing my weakness! They also did REM’s Superman, followed by a very natural segue into David Bowie’s Heroes.

After that, we spent some time in the bar's entryway. The door to the storeroom was flanked on either side by carved wooden doodads. One had the face of a frog, the other a pig. Both were fascinating to Baby Dog, particularly the pig.

We also played with a pole that stands in the middle of the entryway. I stood her up holding onto the pole and positioned myself on the opposite side. She started to work her way counter-clockwise around to me, and I scooted counter-clockwise too, keeping myself directly opposite. She stopped, confused. When she moved again, I made another countermove. Then she smiled, getting it, and we chased this way and that around the pole until I was too winded to move. She was laughing gleefully by then. It occurred to me later that I may made a crucial early failure in my chief job as “father”; I have allowed her to associate “the pole” with “FUN!”

We spent about an hour at the show before figuring Baby Dog had had enough. On the way back to the East Bay, we called the Pirates. Baby Pirate was still asleep, but we met up for dinner shortly after at Picante. And that is the day that was.
*People round here call San Francisco “the City.” Since San Jose surpassed it in population a few years ago, though, I’ve decided it merited a downgrade. I tried “a city” at first, but that was too subtle. Hence, “the Town.”
**Rain on your wedding day? What the hell’s ironic about that? Was there a drought forecast?


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