Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Chile Today, Hot Tamale

There is  much scurrying around the Above The Fold household.  There is a little bundle of joy headed our way. The stork is flying in to drop him off on the weekend after Thanksgiving. The spare bedroom has to be prepared for his arrival. New bedspreads and dresser decorations have to be purchased to reflect his specific gender and replace the frilly, girlie accoutrements that previously adorned the room.

Kate and Spence are about to be parents to a brand new, bouncing baby Chilean foreign exchange student named Emilio.  The proud parents are bubbling with excitement and are endlessly Googling his hometown of Talca in the Maule region of Chile.

Spence:  The first thing I'm going to do is teach him the American father/son tradition of "pull my finger."

Kate: I've found myself preparing for Emilio in a different way than I prepared for the three girls...and it's maddeningly gender-based.  My initial thought was I needed to find different chores for him than I had for the girls..that I couldn't ask HIM to unload the dishwasher.  Then I realized, OH YES I CAN.  Why shouldn't HE unload the dishwasher like all the girls had to do?  As a life-long feminist, I was unsettled by my gender-based reaction to a boy.  There is much to be learned about Emilio--and myself.

How much different will a boy be?  Will he listen to the same radio station that the girls tuned in to?  Will he obligingly follow our rules? What kind of groceries do we have to buy?  Will he eat us out of house and home? Or is a teenager a teenager?  Do gender and nationality have anything to do with it?

Did we mention he still doesn't speak English very well?  Yikes. 

It's starting to sound like a television sitcom in the making..."The Boys and Kate." Spence, Tucker and Emilio...and me.


Ernie Branscomb said...

Kate, You and Spence can be very proud of yourselves! The student exchange program is the most educational, and best thing that we do. It is one of the best hopes that we have to bring about world understanding and peace.

And... even if he doesn't understand American "feminism" he'll have something to tell about for the rest of his life.

Kate said...

I feel like I'M the student who will be on the exchange. Lots to learn about you boys.

skippy said...

Appreciation and congratulations to you and your soon-to-be special family arrival. Adventures, good times and new memories await for you and Emilio. Awesome.

Fred Mangels said...

Yet more unwanted foreigners!

Ernie Branscomb said...

Fred... Did you really say that???

You need to meet and talk to one of these kids for just a little bit.

Kate said...

Surely Fred was being flip (and don't call me Shirley)

Fred Mangels said...

If you can ever find one, the National Lampoon's Unwanted Foreigners issue was their funnies ever, imo. It was published back in the 70s or early 80s so might be tough to find.

Content was certainly not for the politically correct, but I thought the issue was hysterical.