27 February 2009

Book Review: Daddy Goes to Work

When perusing the children's section of the library, my 4-year-old son D- loves to pretend he's picking his books completely at random, while he's actually fulfilling his intricate agenda to provide us with as diverse and challenging an array of reading material as he possibly can.

I welcome the variety of viewpoints, subject matter, and age-appropriateness even if it invites many questions whose answers involve almost nothing related to his carefully established knowledge of the world or its people.

Along with the usual traumatizingly graphic or outdated tomes that make you wonder who's monitoring the children's catalog, this child, who has absolutely zero religious education of any kind, has added classics like the following to one sub-series of his larger work entitled Why Did They Let Me Pick The Books, Again?The Best Eid Ever, Starlight and Candles: The Joys of the Sabbath, and K is for Kwanzaa.

He picked this latest one out one day while I was chasing his little sister M- back towards the kids' play area in the library. He later checked the books out himself at the self-checkout station, so I didn't see everything we'd borrowed till we got home.

I can't help but see his latest noteworthy choice as not only a heavy-handed and judgmental suggestion but an outright personal affront. It's called Daddy Goes to Work, by Jabari Asim.

Daddy Goes to Work by Jabari Asim, cover image courtesy of Amazon.com
This is the kind of unsubtle signal that only a small child or a complete asshole could so calmly provide to an unplanned stay-at-home father.

I'm thinking if he resigns from this tact, after the message seems to have flown right over my head, that I may find him digging through the shelves to find Daddy At Least Gets Off The Couch And Shaves Once In Awhile.


LiteralDan said...

For the record, this book is decent, about a little girl going to work with her dad, set to an abcb rhyme scheme.

The illustrations feature very awkwardly posed people in watercolors.

I'm thinking I should re-create this experience for D- by taking him on a tour of MY current workplace, which should look quite familiar to him (though it unfortunately doesn't feature a pool table like the last one).

I'll just explain that aside from the lack of pay, the only real difference between here and there is that at our house, the HR police aren't on us about wearing pants at all times, and we tell fewer poop jokes.

Meg said...

This is a great post. I used to pick pretty average books from the library when I was a kid, but then my Mum used to leave her magazines in the bathroom, until I started to read a bit better and asked her what "date rape" and "orgasms" are...

unmitigated me said...

Could be worse. He could have picked out Petra Has Two Mommies.

Mama Dawg said...

Do they have one titled, "Mommy Hates Her Job And Wants A New One But The Economy Is So Shitty That She Has No Choice But To Stick With It"?

Anonymous said...

Ah, I'm laughing. Feels good. You have a gift.

Carolyn...Online said...

You need to drop a book on his bed with the title, "Spank." That'll show him.

beth said...

Try finding my old favorite, "Parenting: Damned if you do, Damned if you don't".

TerriRainer said...

OMG that's funny. Maybe you should write your own book entitled "The Toughest Job a Daddy Can Do". Or when your kids are teens think about this for a title, *"The Under-Paid Unappreciated Parent".

:) Terri

* Trust me, if you feel unappreciated now, just wait.