Baby Showers and Parole

A very brief article of no importance.  Maybe it’s unusual, but as a man advanced in years with daughters and granddaughters, I had never been to a baby shower until yesterday.  Ken and I went because our wives went.  It was held right after church in the preschool rooms of Holy Innocents for their vicar, who is due to deliver momentarily.  We, Ken and I, were outnumbered, our presence tolerated with good humor, and initiated into a ritual with norms enforced by those looks only mothers can give.  The first, we discovered, is that you can’t leave until its over, not that we didn’t try.  The second, you are required to coo oooh after each gift is opened.  I cannot remember the last time I coo’d oooh.  It was not something taught in seminary.  The third, you are expected to comment on and remember the particular designs and uses of each item, especially the blankets, of which there are many.  A nodding head and Mona Lisa smile are the acceptable poses to be maintained while sitting on chairs of dubious heritage.  It goes on for a long time in order to accommodate all the requisite comments shared in a rather haphazard way with the expectant mom, the persons sitting near you, and somebody on the other side of the room near whom you should have been sitting.  We were grateful for our eventual release, and learned on the walk to lunch with our parole officers that it could have included songs and games, so quit complaining.        

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