Dude is going through his sassy teenage stage… about 10 years late

Most people write long, heart-warming, and reflective blog posts around Christmas and New Year’s. I didn’t particularly feel like it this year, so here is my holiday message:

Christmas Eve 2012. If you look closely at Dude's right hand, you can see that Alien is clutched in it!

Christmas Eve 2012. If you look closely at Dude’s right hand, you can see that Alien is clutched in it!

According to Dude wishes you and yours all the best this holiday season. May you appreciate the people in your life as well as the little things that make the day to day worth it. May you face tough times with fortitude and realize that “this too shall pass.” But most of all, I wish you laughter. Our family had a bunch of trying months in 2012, but by the end of the summer, we were simply laughing at the ridiculousness that was our life. I think that ability is what keeps people sane at the end of the day. So, for 2013, I wish you laughter.

Dude-ism #126

I stayed at our parents’ house in the suburbs for Christmas this year. One evening, I headed upstairs around midnight to go to bed. I went into the bathroom that shares a door with Dude’s room to brush my teeth, wash my face, etc.

I immediately noticed that Dude’s light was on, even though Mom had put him to bed about 45 minutes earlier.

I nudged open the door to Dude’s room. He was laying across the middle of his bed, propped up on his right arm, paging through his collection of torn up circulars. His Maryland and Penn State keychains that play music were on his bed, his DVD player was on his bed, and his radio was playing music a lot louder than it should have been.

“Dude, you’re supposed to be asleep,” I remonstrated.

Dude looked at me with a look that seemed to say, “And your point would be…?”

I began adjusting his covers and tried to coax him into laying down. As I moved the blankets, a few of the paper clippings fell behind his bed. Dude immediately jolted up and POINTED at the corner where the papers fell. A legit index-finger-extended-all-other-fingers-curled-down point. “No circulars. No circulars,” Dude said as he pointed at the spot where they fell and looked at me disapprovingly. (To understand Dude’s use of the word “no,” kindly refer to the Dude Language Guide.)

The kid JUST started pointing in the last few years. I was not about to ignore this beautiful, functional communication moment. So I climbed onto the bed, squeezed my arm down between the mattress and the wall, and began pulling out papers by the handful. It turns out there had been a pile accumulating next to the bed for quite some time. After dumping each handful on his bed, I’d ask Dude, “Is this what fell?” “No,” he would respond as he kept pointing. I practically cleared out everything that was behind there and he kept prodding me to keep going. I think he was taking advantage of my momentary willingness to help. Smart, conniving kid that he can be.


Finally, I announced that I had recovered everything that was there to be recovered. I figured Dude would now agree to laying down since all his circulars were now accounted for.

“Ok Dude. Now will you lay down and go to sleep?” I asked.

“NO WAY,” Dude responded emphatically.

I tried desperately not to burst out laughing.

“Dude. Bed. Now.”

“No,” he responded, shaking his head.

“Dude, while I appreciate that you seem to be using “no” and “no way” appropriately nowadays, I do not appreciate you sassing me,” I said smirking as Dude finally relented and laid down.


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