Father of none

Tuesdays are usually spent alone in my room, but Judith asked me to clean up around here, which means she has a houseguest coming.

As a rule, we never clean this house unless Judith is expecting company. That's when we frantically sweep away the hair the dog leaves everywhere, wipe spilled jelly off the kitchen table, mop up the urine splatters around the toilet bowl, etc.

Today I gave six hours to the cause, and Jake says the place now looks like humans live here. If you ask me, it looked more human before we cleaned up, but at five bucks an hour this human is happy.

♦ ♦ ♦ 

Tonight the guests arrived: Judith's sister-in-law by a previous marriage, and her infant child.

Aw, little babies are so delightful, everyone says. Their tiny scrunched-up faces, their strange noises and smells, their incessant cuteness. What could be more adorable? 



Athlete's foot. 

Stained t-shirts. 

A cat's litter box. 

The list goes on and on. Almost anything is more adorable than the spitting, squealing, screaming, googling, whimpering, and drooling of a newborn. It's so repulsive I can't push the earplugs far enough into my ears.

The only thing more annoying than a baby's babbling is the adults babbling back. "Oooh, it's an iddy biddy baby!"

Mother and child are only staying for a few days, though, and then the quiet of Lugosi's ferocious barking will again be the dominant sound around the house.

Nothing against little barely-humans, but they become more tolerable a few years later, when they can feed themselves and wipe their own asses. Of course, a few years after that, they become intolerable again. Why anyone would voluntarily raise children is a mystery to me.

Give me love, give me love
Give me peace on Earth
Give me light, give me life
Keep me free from birth

                —George Harrison

My goal in life is to be the father of none. I am completely free of paternal instinct, which guarantees that I'll live my life alone. In the highly unlikely event that I find some woman who can stand me, she'll want children. Most women do. They're hard-wired for it, by genetics.

My wires are crossed, and if I had the money I'd have my wires snipped.

From Pathetic Life #19
Tuesday, Dec. 12, 1995

Addendum, 2022: How odd to see that I used the word 'googling' in 1995, referring to baby noises. It's a word that's been lost in the decades since.

This is an entry retyped from an on-paper zine I wrote many years ago, called Pathetic Life. The opinions stated were my opinions then, but might not be my opinions now. Also, I said and did some disgusting things, so parental guidance is advised.


  1. Whenever someone would tell my dad that I was a cute baby, he would tell them 'He looks likes Eisenhower. All babies look like Eisenhower.' He made sure I knew this. I kinda agree with him -- Arden

    1. Come to think about it, the photo Duggles provided looks like Ike in '52 when he heard the Convention nominated Nixon to run with him.


    2. All babies look like Eisenhower and sound like bad punk and smell like poop.

      And John, just how old are you to remember the '52 convention? I barely remember the '72.

    3. I was 2 1/2 and I wasn't a member of any organized political party: I was a Democrat. Still am.


    4. I vote for Democrats, because there's no better alternative, but there's no political party where I'd be comfortable. I don't like parties.

    5. Well I don't carry a card or pay dues or anything like that. When I say I'm a Democrat, I mean I usually vote for Democrats. I've rung doorbells and made phone calls for Democrats I genuinely believe in. I've been a County surrogate for a Presidential candidate and just gave speeches for another, both Democrats. I think when you vote for Democrats and rarely vote for other parties' candidates that makes you a Democrat, but of course you can choose your own labels.


    6. If I'm riding a bus across the country, and Greyhound stops at a McDonald's in Paducah, I'll probably have a Big Mac. That doesn't mean I like McDonald's. Just means there's no better option.

      Certainly all the good guys in American politics are Democrats, but there are only a dozen of them. For the rest of the D's, they're mostly not Republicans, but that the kindest comment I could offer.

    7. Democratic state officials across the country stopped the Trump Coup in 2020. Brave Secretaries of State and State and County Auditors. Precinct-elected poll workers. Mayors. There are more than 12 good Democrats out there.


    8. I ask a wee bit more than "Didn't let them steal the election."

      There's a dozen or so Democrats in Congress, possibly more, I ain't conducted an accurate count, who believe corporations aren't people and people should have health care. The rest of the Dems just show up and don't believe in anything but gumming up progress and getting re-elected.

    9. OK, well, believe it or not, there are Democrats who aren't in congress, and I vote for them; in some cases I campaign for them: 3 presidential candidates and several city council people. Most of them lost, but we gave the Rs a fuckin run for their money. When I was working on the Presidential campaign in 2004, there were about eight Dems running. We busted out early, but I worked full time for over two months. The nicest people we met: the campaign team of Al Sharpton. They were decent people and fun to be around.


    10. Doubtless nice people. I'd vote for them too, when they're running against Nazis. I do so with no real enthusiasm, though.


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