I didn't have a bad childhood. It was pretty good when you factor in the usual things like going for doof mparararo (swimming in dirty ponds or rivers especially after the rains), tree climbing and games that left all sorts of scars on various parts of my body. My parents were your run of the mill parents which means they messed me up about the same as anyone else. I was brought up to survive as a Kenyan which means I was given survival skills like the ability to reconnect what Kenya Power had pulled asunder. (Please don't tell them. I am still scared of the sound of motorbikes because of this.)
In addition to my parents, television also served as a very huge influence. And it is for this reason that I am freaked out by the idea of being a father. Why? Well think about it. Think about some of the ways in which parenthood is depicted on the screen.
One of the things that keeps me up at night as a potential father is the choice between a stupid kid and an ugly one. Which one would you go for? I mean a stupid but good looking kid will be nice to look at until they get to the age where they can form words. Then what? Do you just have them stand in the corner and shut up because every word makes you want to throw them out of the window? Do you just nod and smile when they shout out things that cause traffic to stop?
On the flip side is the smart but ugly kid which I assume more people would pick. And they would only go for this option so as not to come off as shallow. I get it. This kid can use its brains to go far. All the best schools. All the best jobs. But then again it boils down to something rather simple. One day this kid will crawl into your bed on a Tuesday night during a thunderstorm. And you will freak the hell out and then end up throwing the kid out of a window. Sure you could strike gold and have a good looking, smart baby but with your luck you might have to make the choice about why you're going to have to resist throwing your kid out of the window.
Another very possible angle is that your kid could be possessed. Quit laughing. It's a very plausible thing going by horror movies. One moment your little cute kid is drooling on the floor and the next he or she (but mostly it's a girl. Little possessed girls are way more scary for some random reason.) is turning their head 360 degrees and can walk on the walls. It seems to happen to the nicest people in these movies which means it could totally happen to you. Then what? Who are you gonna call? Ghost busters? Charmed sisters? Captain planet? Nope. You're gonna have to handle it by yourself. And I don't really have a manual for that stuff. I guess this means I have to be friends with a Catholic priest just in case.
YouTube has also complicated parenthood. In fact just this morning I was watching this video of parents giving their kids lemons and then standing back to record it. Sure it was hilarious but then if you copy and paste that to me then things could go awry. I am competitive and I am sure I might have been dropped on my head as a baby. I am not quite sure if I would understand the proper moments to reach for the first aid kit and the ones to reach for the video camera. I would have to undergo some sort of training for this. The kid is being strangled by the cat. Hmmm. Funny? Yes. Possibly fatal? Yes. Video camera or first aid? Use the video camera as part of the first aid kit.
I get chills when I think of the movie 'Taken'. I am not as cool as Liam Neeson so I wouldn't know what I would do if my kid was kidnapped in Paris. In fact just for that reason my daughter is banned from Paris in advance. Even his lines sounded like someone who knows what to do. " If you let my daughter go now, this will be the end of it. I will not look for you. I will not pursue you. But if you don't, I will look for you, I will find you and I will kill you." At this point I assume i would get that call and ask. "My daughter? Which one? The stupid one or the ugly one? Oh. The ugly one? Ni sawa."
But beyond the jokes and all fatherhood is looming over the horizon. Nope I haven't gotten anyone pregnant...this week...that I know of. I just happened to be thinking about how I want my kids to turn out and figured even if I were perfect then they would still be messed up in one way or another. Think about the perfect tv families. The Camdens on 7th Heaven all had issues of their own despite the fact that their parents were awesome church people. Obviously all the Huxtable kids on the Cosby Show turned out to be drug dealing serial killers because their parents were so level headed.
It's all put in a very simplistic manner but the whole point of this is the idea of fatherhood is kinda scary. But that is even worse when you put it into perspective for me. Lets just begin with the fact that I am curious about naming my kid Luke just so when he pisses me off I can get my voice all deep and raspy and shout "Luke, I am your father." See? I need help.