Thursday, January 24, 2008

50 Something Betters

Everyone who has ever seen Steve Martin's Roxanne, has seen the riff where he gives the bar 50 something betters on how to insult his nose. In my own life, the equivalent of "Hey Big Nose!" is "You have HOW MANY?" and even better, "Why?"

50. We keep hoping for twins but so far that hasn't worked out.

49. We were trying to even up the team. (5 girls, 3 boys).

48. Meet my retirement plan, I'm staying with each of them for six weeks out of the year.

47. Catholic with a capital C.

46. Gilbreths: 12 kids, Nobel Prize winner of Economics, multiple geniuses, published authors, Von Traps: Seven, Broadway show and Musical Movie about story has made bazillions. Osmonds (6). Singing, Fame, Fortune and perfect teeth. Hughes: 6, youngest is a Olympic gold medalist, Kennedy's 9, President, would be President, Senator, etc.,


45. I lost count after six.

44. We wanted to justify our SUV.

43. Creating my own voting block for when I run for President.

42. I now have plenty of excuses if my high school fantasy dream job which it will and it should (Dancer from "Cats") goes unfulfilled.

41. Wanted to win a trophy at my 25th year High School reunion for something!

40. Getting my money's worth out of the baby clothes and paraphernalia.

39. We never have left overs.

38. Q: Don't you know how this works? A: Well yeah!

37. Hoping for my own Reality TV show.

36. With such good looking intelligent offspring, it seemed selfish to limit ourselves.

35. We enjoy causing pure terror on the faces of travelers in the terminals simply by walking up to the gate en masse. Sometimes, it isn't even our gate.

34. We don't have to share a pew...ever.

33. We can dress them up as reindeer for next year's Christmas card.

32. I can drown out anyone in an argument with pure sound.

31. Hospital now has named a parking place in my honor.

30. OBGYN bought a Florida condo because of me.

29. Defense in depth.

28. Can tell babysitter I have no sympathy for him or her if they have to change a diaper.

27. Creates instant conversation starter or stopper depending upon venue.

26. Email using just initials of children eliminates all spam.

25. We have a bike, shoe, glove, coat to fit every age and gender and occasion.

24. I tell people I only have eight.

23. Can mess with people's heads by adding additional baby pictures of brother's and brother in law's children in office without telling anyone.

22. When I call for volunteers, no one else can say..."I'm too busy."

21. No one asks me to co-op babysit. No one tries to take advantage of my being a SAHM for free babysitting either. (It used to happen).

20. Always get the HOV lane.

19. Exiting Car is an event.

18. When we dress the same, (all ND jerseys, all 4th of July) it's an instant parade.

17. Easy to cook for a Church Dinner or Event, used to feeding a crowd.

16. Insta-clod spotter, the person who asks, " gonna have any more?" or any variant thereof.

15. Size of family makes people underestimate our brains.

14. No fights over names of children, we got all our favorites in there.

13. You ONLY Have HOW MANY?

12. Statistically, one of these guys should strike it rich.

11. Gene pool Standard deviation has been skewed in our favor.

10. Fifth one at Catholic School is free. Right?

9. Never have to worry about being corrupted by too much wealth or material things.

8. Can rationalize messy house based on sheer numbers. It was messy before we got to eight, but now I can justify it.

7. Shrunk in the wash, no problem, it will fit.....insert child's name here.

6. Eight months out of the year, we get birthday cake.

5. Easy to teach children how to count to ten.

4. Fun watching people try to test their long term memory listing all our children's names.

3. Can identify recessive genes easily.

2. Guaranteed inspiration at all times for your weekly doses of Chocolate!

1. Said we'd accept children lovingly from God. God took us seriously.

AND the real statement I always fall back on when asked about our family and its obvious large size, "It's no sacrifice to be surrounded by people that love us."

Go to for fifty pretty darn funnies, if not something betters.


Christine said...

Well, I ONLY have 4. But that has garnered me the following:

"Oh, you're the daughter who really loves sex." (from my parents' new neighbor, while he was shaking my hand. Ick.)

"Are they ALL HIS?" (I got this one TWICE, during my final pregnancy. From total strangers. While standing next to my husband.)

"Are you trying for a girl?"
(No. We have boys. That is What We Do.)

"Gunning for Catholic Mother of the Year, eh?"

Generally, I am too shocked to respond with anything more than a "Huh? What?" Which, as it turns out, does seem to let them know they are out of line.

We used to have a "big family". But now a lot of people we know have 5 kids. And our Catholic neighbor with the Mormon husband has 9...we look like pikers.

Best day for me: a few years ago, I took my boys to the park. So, when it was time to leave, I stood in the center of the park and called them each by name. After the 4th name, several heads turned in my direction. The look on their faces was clear as day: HOW MANY CHILDREN DOES THIS WOMAN HAVE?

So, I added a few. Ethnic names, too. I only stopped because we were already halfway to the car.

Other favorite: When we announced that #4 was on the way, my husband's female coworkers all started covering their mouths and noses as they walked past his office...because they were afraid just being in the room with that powerful manliness was going to get them pregnant.

Dotty said...

Great list Sherry. I love that Christine started adding unusual names at the park. That is very, very funny. I'm one of 5 kids and we were an oddity too and my mom would get "but they behave so well!? " Like the more kids you have, the worse they should all behave. People expect you to be a worse parent if you have more than one or two children.

I used to get "you only have two" (as they would actually LOOK at my stomach to see evidence of a hidden pregnancy--ugh) which was equally painful as we had had 2 miscarriages; so, I would just blantanly tell them of our loses. Silence would ensue.

I am looking forward to moving to PA b/c the realtor has told me of 3families moving in the area from out of state EACH coming with 4 children! Yeah. And she didn't make fun of them. An area that isn't kid phobic? I mean really...If we don't have kids, then how can we compete with our neighbors about whose kids are better at sports/school??!

SherryTex said...

Well, I'll miss you Dottie.

Was a bit nervous about this post, didn't want it to sound angry, just annoyed that the conversation comes up so very very very often, sometimes with the same person over and over and over again.

Allen said...

Brilliant! Very funny stuff, but then again, some of the best comedy is born of necessity.

Anyway, made me laugh. Thanks for stopping by the brain lab.

Larramie said...

And you must certainly be loved in return...what a heartful!

SuburbanCorrespondent said...

I'm actually sick of birthday cake!

But that's okay...the kids are worth it.

Anonymous said...

I'm the ninth of ten kids, but in my mom's generation, large families were not so rare. But that doesn't mean the snarky comments aren't made to the next generation. So, when people learn I'm number nine, I get the standard "Oh you're Catholic" statement, or the usual "Oh, your poor mother". I just say "Well, I for one am glad she didn't stop at eight!"

Mark Jabo said...

Excellent post, Sherry.

From the opposite end of the spectrum, we have one son. My good friend from college and his wife have three.

We were watching the kids play in the park one day and he turned to me and said, "No, offense, but we don't really consider you guys parents." :)

I think you get the Crocodile Dundee Parenting Award. When people like me pull out a photo of one kid, you get to pull out eight and say, "Now, that's a parent!"


SherryTex said...


That's terrible. I'd be so irritated. One kid is all that is required to be a parent, you're the 24/7 pater familus.

Okay Mark, I suggest you do the Sauce for the goose on this one, what to say when you have those who feel the need to comment on family size.

JimmyV said...

First time reader, from IronicCatholic's blog. Great stuff, we are only at two but praying for more so you post has prepared me well for the onslaught which will follow.

KaleJ said...

love the list. I posted a few of mine from a male perspective.

Ma Beck said...

This warms my heart!

-The 9th of 9

leigh said...

i loved this. i had a girl and then a boy, considered myself two for two and called it quits. it still takes a village to get them out of the house for school each morning. you are a saint.

Leaving a comment is a form of free tipping. But this lets me purchase diet coke and chocolate.

If you sneak my work, No Chocolate for You!