Monday, June 24, 2013

Scholarship Money is Available

We will, from time to time, place items on top of the refrigerator and use them as rewards or incentives for good behavior. Of course, as the kids get older, they have to do something more than just not act like jackasses. They actually have to do something, like make a significant contribution to the cleanliness of the house or save their little brother from drowning on one of those magic wands with the mysterious liquid/glitter combination. There has been a box of unearned Legos up there for over a week now, which certainly disappoints my wife and me.

Today I am upping the ante. While I won't divulge the final figures, I will offer to pay a "handsome amount" toward my daughter's college education on one primary condition. (Sources with knowledge of the situation estimate the amount to be in the $500,000 - $750,000 range, or roughly one semester of 2025 tuition at a state school, according to projections.) To qualify, my daughter does not have to clean the gutters, cut the grass, be left-handed, do well in school, participate in a bunch of extra-curricular activities, or kiss the butts of her trigonometry teachers for recommendations.

She simply has to stop talking like a baby.

That's right, I'll contribute upwards of $750,000 to my 6-year-old daughter's college fund, if she'll JUST STOP talking like a baby.

(Understand that our girl has just recently started talking like a baby every so often just to be cute. We as parents, and especially my wife as a kindergarten teacher, realize that kids develop speech patterns at vastly different rates. We're obviously not frustrated at the speech itself, just the attempt at attention. The only impediment here is her understanding that she's not as cute as she thinks she is.)

Of course, there is some fine print. She must not talk like a baby continuously from now until the day she is accepted to an accredited university, if she chooses to go to college. If she decides not to enroll in a university or trade school, I'll still pay her. Whatever. I'll start the clock and prorate $750,000 over each second between now and 2025. Every time she uses a word from the below list of forbidden baby words, the clock "resets" and the maximum amount she can collect diminishes.

This includes when she speaks to her baby brother. He's nearly 18 months old now, so we can stop treating him like the helpless blob in a baby carriage that he might have been last summer. Besides, when he's busy choking himself with a slinky, the phrase, "Did that widdle swinky-dinky get cot awound youw necky-wecky?" doesn't seem to lend appropriate gravity to the situation.

Herewith are words that she is forbidden to use in order to earn the $750,000. In typical job responsibilities fashion, the list includes but is not limited to:

Awwowed, bwoke, bwoken, cwimb, Dewaware, famiwy, ice queem, pissgetti, pway, pwease, pwobbwy, queen (acceptable in terms of a king's wife but not in the absence of dirt), sweep (i.e. sleep) swide, wast, way (as in way down to sweep), weawwy, weg, wittle, wight, wike, wowwipop, wunning, (and all forms of the verb "wun") wuv, yewwow.

In addition, we must have absolutely no more conversations like this recent one - decisions of the judges will be final:

Me (concerned, to my wife): He seemed to be running a little temperature.
Daughter: He ran a temper? Whaaaat? You said he ran a tem...
Me: Temperature.
Daughter: What's a temper chore?
Me: Tem-per-a-ture
Daughter (mocking): Tem-per-a-chore?

Also, on a related note, it is written into the contract that if she ever attempts to amuse or entertain anyone, including friends, relatives, or business associates with an impersonation of Baby Bear from Sesame Street, Dad has the right to void the contract immediately, without warning and without refund.

The fourth and final condition is that no backtalk is allowed. Assuming at some point she decides to forego the baby talk and the reminding me at every instance when I call her by her brother's name, the backtalk line in the deal virtually assures me a minimal payout, since teens just can't keep their mouths shut. As dads who have come before me might have said, "You gotta get the backtalk clause in there. It's your golden parachute."

So no backtalk awwowed (ah, now she has me doing it) from now until college; like that will happen. I think my $750,000 is safe, at least until we need to start pricing minivans again.

No comments:

Post a Comment