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Dan Milledge Headshot

How to Live With Children: How to Exit the House, Option 2

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Jose Luis Pelaez Inc via Getty Images

Cast: Dan=Dad , O=Son (age 5), T=Daughter (age 3)

* * *

Dan: OK, Trixie, let's brush your hair.

T: No pony. I don't want a pony.

Dan: Just a small pony.

T: (makes fists, holds them together like she's asking which one has the nickel) This big. Only this big.

Dan: (sits on bench by door) Right. That big.

T: Small pony.

D: Yes. Oscar, get your shoes on. Come here, Trixie.

T: (stands in front of bench) This big.

Dan: Oscar? Where are you?

O: (emerges from his bedroom) I was (launches into incomprehensible story about where he was and what he was doing)

Dan: OK, come get your shoes on.

O: (runs and slides on floor, bashing into wall near bench, digs shoes from out of basket under bench)

Dan: (starts brushing Trixie's gnarled, yogurt-filled hair) Gee whiz, Trixie, you are a ragamuffin this morning.

O: I can't undo the knots!

T: I am filthy.

Dan: Well, no, you're not filthy. Oscar, just work on the knots while I do Trixie's hair. (to Trixie) Your hair gets so tangled overnight. You have to try to not get yogurt in there. (brushes through a yogurt knot)

T: (grunts like an old man)

O: (squeals angrily) I can't do it!

Dan: Just take it easy, it's only practice (looks down to Oscar)

O: (fingers furiously at the knots. fingers look like they're fighting with each other in a mosh pit as they barely touch the laces; eyes are closed)

D: Oscar, you can't -- just take it slower, and open your eyes. That will help.

O: But that's the way I do it.

D: Yeah, but, just try it my way.

O: (continues to try it the blind-finger-fighting way)

Dan: (continues to work on Trixie's hair, shifts her body around in a circle as he goes)

T: (whispering) Mountain mama... take me home...

Dan: What?

Oscar: (shoves shoe a centimeter from Dan's eye) Can you do it?

Dan: I'm not going to untie it with my eyeball, Oscar! Just -- back away a second. Let me finish with this... (finishes pony) OK.

T: (sprints away)

Dan: Wait, Trixie, I'm not done! Come on back.

T: (jumps on bed in other room)

Dan: (unties shoe knot deliberately) Here, watch me. See, what you do is actually look at the knot. And if you look, you can see, here is one lace. So I grab this one, and then with my other hand, I grab another one and just pull them -- (looks over to Oscar)

O: (has the other shoe in hand, blind-finger-fights at the knot)

Dan: Oscar, I asked you to watch -- I was trying to -- OK, just here, take this one. I'll get the other one ready. One day we're going to spend the whole day. It'll be like shoe school. And we'll get it all worked out.

O: Yeah, we need to work it all out. (walks to far side of the room for some reason to put shoe on)

Dan: Trixie! Come on! (unties Oscar's other shoe, throws it across the room, hits Oscar in ear)

O: Aaa! (laughs)

Dan: Sorry. Don't throw shoes.

T: (runs back; hair bubbles out from multiple places where it loosened from the pony)

Dan: (grabs barrettes, tamps down bubbles with them)

T: (whisper sings) Country road... mountain mama...

Dan: Get your Crocs on, Trixie. (walks over to Oscar, ties shoes) OK, let's get out of here.

T: ...West Virginia...

Dan & O & T: (open door and exit into hall/walk down steps)

Dan: What are you singing, Trixie?

T: That's Mommy's song.

O: Yeah, Mommy sings that song.

Dan: Like this? (sings John Denver classic)

T & O: Yeah.

Dan: You like that song, yeah?

T: Yes.

O: Yeah, we like it.

Dan: Yeah, it's a good one.

Total Time: 3.6 minutes

For Option 1, please click here.