Sorry to go all Andy Rooney but, did you ever notice…

For the fathers out there with a bunch of kids, I have a question. Is it just me? Whenever I am out with my five kids someplace, a park, the store, or even church I get the question. You all know the question, but I am not interested in the question right now. I am interested in what comes after the question.

I am out somewhere with the kids and someone, typically another mother, will mosey on up and ask me with a disbelieving look “are they all yours?” The snark rolodex then whirs into frenetic motion trying to find just the right response. I could use Matt’s line about them actually being hitchhikers I picked up because I thought they looked so darn much like the others. I could make a remark about how I just have the young ones and the other ones are still at home school. I could give them the unblinking stare and ask them if I can share some literature with them. But instead I opt for brevity and respond “Uh huh.”

But then, then comes the part that gets me. More often than not I will get some variation on the following remark. “Your wife must be a saint.” Now the truth is that my wife is a saint. She has more patience than Job and the wisdom of Solomon, but how do they know that? Why don’t they ever say “You must be a saint?” For all they know my wife could have run off with K-fed six months ago, after all I am the one out with the kids. But no, she is the presumed saint and I am presumed to be on supervised visitation.

So I have decided to update my snark rolodex with some retorts to this derisive presumption. I thought that one clever response would be to suddenly break out in tears and ask the offender if they know my wife and if they have seen her lately as the kids miss her. But, being a guy, displays of such emotion are difficult for me. Then I thought that I could mumble something about how I truly believe she could be a saint one day, after she gets out of rehab … again. That was better, but still requires me to really sell it and frankly that takes too much energy, I am with the kids I remind you. Anyway, I have my new response at the ready the next time some unsuspecting soul tries to confer blind sainthood on my wife. Ready?

Hey, are all those yours?

Ummm, yes.

Wow. Your wife must be a …

YES! Yes she is. But the kids and I love her anyway.