The Panda Trap

"Would you like to hear our specials? Or perhaps I can show you how to eat with a fork."

“Would you like to hear our specials? Or perhaps I can show you how to eat with a fork.”

Are we human? Or are we parents? According to Brandon Flowers of the Killers fame, we might even be dancer. But before I can even begin to entertain the notion that we may in fact be dancer, there’s the human question. See, Wife and I are out on the town for my birthday, and, for the first time in over 13 months, we have absolutely no responsibilities. That’s because my parents, NailsMom & NailsDad, generously agreed to come for an overnight to watch Kid while we are reintroduced into the wild by a professional endangered parent handler named Joseph. Joseph is a card-carrying member of two noble organizations, PITA (People for the Independence of Tired Adults), and UBER (Uber). Since liberating us from our enclosure, Joseph has gently coaxed us into his endangered parent transport, or, as he calls it, “The Shev-RO-lay Kroos.” He has assured us that there are others just like us at the endangered parent reservation, or, as he says, “Beer-GARD-en.” And he has patiently explained to us that we don’t need to pay him with cash once we have reached our destination, or, as he carefully annunciates, “Your CRED-it CARD will BE CHARG-ed.”  Of course, now we are sitting on the outdoor patio of the endangered parent reservation, sans-Joseph and utterly defenseless, struggling to interpret a menu that was clearly designed for a more highly evolved species. They don’t even offer microwaved chicken fingers – everything is freshly prepared! Can we go back to the enclosure now?

Et Tu, Koko?

"I'm getting real tired of this crap."

“I’m getting real tired of this crap.”

You wouldn’t happen to have an extra pair of pants, would you? Mine are currently…inadequate. See, Wife and I just visited the gorilla exhibit at the zoo, and, well – how do I put this? – I soiled myself. Allow me to explain. In anticipation of having our weekends booked until the end of time, Wife and I decided to treat ourselves to a two-day vacation that included a jaunt to the Franklin Park Zoo. While not quite the crown jewel of Boston, FPZ is easily the crown polyester liner: it’s cheap, crumbling, and smells like a sweaty, overweight king who sleeps on a straw mattress and likes to roll around in the mud. To be fair, FPZ is family friendly and a pleasant place to walk around, so for expecting parents like us, it was perfect. My only beef with FPZ is that its layout is designed in such a way that you are lulled into a false sense of security by the time you get to the final exhibit: the gorilla dome. Normally, I wouldn’t admit to being scared by gorillas, especially in the context of a bullet-proof glass enclosure, but when you have just spent the last two hours lazily strolling past one solitary, obese camel, a lion that looked like he only does the Nautilus machines, and a giraffe-less giraffe field, you get a little complacent. “None of Our Animals Could Possibly Kill You!” should be FPZ’s motto. That is, until you get to the gorilla dome. There I was, directing my extremely pregnant Wife to smile so I could snap a photo of her standing mere feet from a large silverback gorilla when…THWACK! The gorilla slammed his fifty-pound fist into the reinforced partition, prompting Wife, myself, and the rest of the onlookers to scream. I’m serious – we all screamed. Afterwards, I could have sworn I saw the gorilla laughing. Now, about those pants.