Now that my 11-year-old son is approaching puberty like a runaway train with no brakes, he’s become obsessed with a lot of new things. Topping the list? Axe body spray. And while yes, it’s better than the alternative — smelling the sweet stench of preteen B.O. — the kid has absolutely no concept of how much to put on. It seems his natural inclination is to empty half the can out onto his body in one spraying. There is absolutely no subtly — he is the Michael Bay of body spray. And the more I ask him to tone it down, the more he uses.
But Axe isn’t the only thing that my son has recently become strangely obsessed with lately. Below is just a small cross section.
1. Magic the Gathering
In case you haven’t yet had the pleasure, Magic the Gathering is a fantasy trading card game that’s apparently all the rage with the kids these days. Other than that, I could not tell you what the hell it is. I wanna say it’s like playing War, but I’m honestly not really sure. Even though my son talks about Magic the Gathering every. waking. moment.
Frankly, I think he knows I don’t understand the game, doesn’t care, and just keeps talking to me about it to prove that I am an idiot. I wouldn’t put it past him.
2. Old Spice body wash
Huh? What? Why Old Spice? Why not just lean into the whole Axe scent and get their body wash? Doesn’t that seem the most logical?
Apparently not, cause he HAS to use Old Spice body wash and nothing else. Insists upon it. So now there are two battling scents working against each other, like two idiots in a nightclub battling over the same girl. In that scenario — as in the one I am currently experiencing with my son — no one wins.
3. Scaring the crap out of me
Seemingly out of nowhere, my son has taken to hiding behind corners and then scaring the hell out of me when I walk by. And you know how that’s cute when a 5-year-old does it? Well, when an 11-year-old does it, I can assure you there is nothing cute about it. It’s next-level terrifying.
I could be rounding a corner in our house or taking a nap, when all of a sudden he jumps out at me — and screams out with his kind of deep, but still basically squeaky preteen voice. I wish I could say that he’s doing it just for laughs. But deep down, I am convinced he’s just trying to establish dominance over me. (It may be working.)
Listen, I like YouTube. I use it a lot myself, because I am human after all, and I like to keep up on what’s going viral. (Okay, that’s a lie. I basically use it to watch old school R&B music videos made between the years 1986 and 1995.) But my son is a YouTube F-A-N-A-T-I-C. He has favorite channels that he watches incessantly, (mostly ones that he thinks are comedy gold, but I can’t even pretend to giggle at). He even prefers watching YouTube to watching TV. TV!
There is no god.
5. Bad jokes
Speaking of comedy, my son suddenly thinks he’s funny. He’s not. His comedy game needs to go back to the woodshop for some serious retooling. He’s trying really hard to be funny, but that effort just makes it worse. At his best his jokes don’t make sense. At his worst, they are just plain bad. Honestly, I wish he would stop …
Because bad jokes are Dad’s domain. And I’ve got those on lock.