Captain’s Prerogative Number One

Youngest daughter came home looking like she had just done a heavyweight boxing title defense. She wasn’t in a fight, but she’s clearly had some fabulous allergic reactions to mosquito bites on her face, under her right eye and on her neck. Face is all puffy, airway is all good so not a 911 deal. Phew.
Stupid ass teachers though, how do they not notice this?
Anyway… a quiet evening home watching the Benadryl do it’s thing and tomorrow is 50/50 about needing another round of Benadryl to finish the job. Jennifer has a couple of important meetings tomorrow, one of which she is running, so I am a little too gleefully hoping youngest needs to stay home from school. That would mean I would just have to stay home as well – you can’t load up a middle schooler with Benadryl and wish her the best of luck lol.
So anyway – the official perspective on why the Captain stays home and not the First Officer…
(1) We both actually have real jobs that are fairly important in terms of the organization we work for.
(2) Tomorrow I have routine work that I would be doing, but nothing critical that I can’t miss or do another day.
(3) She has two important tasks at work tomorrow, one of which very much depends on her.
So for tomorrow at least, it is a reasonable request that I be the one to stay home and watch youngest. It’s not a Fitness Test on Jennifer’s part. I’m not being a weak-minded Beta by offering to stay home either. The team has a problem to fix, and I’m the one that is going to be least put out by fixing it. As I said, it’s a reasonable request that I be the one to stay home.
Now if we both had serious stuff we couldn’t miss, we’d probably do some sort of juggling thing where one of us worked early, and one of us worked late and switch off in the middle of the day, and/or use Grandma or Jennifer’s sister for kid watching duties.
If we were totally tapped out on options to cover it, and say we both had to be somewhere important at 1pm and there’s no hope of family coverage… it would fall to Jennifer to do it. I could probably kick-start my Avoidance Weasel to come up with a bunch of reasons why that is… “I have a nursing license, I simply can’t just abandon my patients and put my license at jeopardy… you have more PTO built up than I do, if I take today off, that’s one less day we can spend together as a family this summer…”. But I’m not going to reach for that stuff as an excuse.
The simple truth is Jennifer wants to play the good mommy card and be with the sick kid, and I wouldn’t want to miss an important work thing for a sick kid. Push come to shove, she’d be at work feeling guilty, I’d be home feeling a little pissed off. So as sexist as it sounds, when we actually default to the stereotypical sex roles, we’re both happier for it. We don’t actually want to be perfectly equal.
But it doesn’t really get as far as KIDCON2 for us very often. So hopefully tomorrow I get to stay home on a beautiful sunny day, miss some mundane stuff at the job, relax with a little TV or a good book, and lovingly drug youngest into a long nap.
Fuck yeah!
I mean… “Captain’s Prerogative Number One. I’ll handle this, report to your usual assignment.”


  1. A good captain knows when it's his turn to spend time in the trenches. Penelope and I enjoy a similar arrangement. It works wonderfully. Moreover, I can relate to the desire to spend some time at home, particularly when it's for the younger who can't presently articulate her desires. "What's that? You want to check out Iron Man 2 on Epix HD on demand? Great! Me too!"

    By the way, your review is coming. It's promising to be a stem winder of a review that covers everything from my read to Penelope's engrossment with the book and full-throated (heh heh) swallowing of the red pill to the all-encompassing strength of leadership/masculinity/charisma (ne game) in a marriage or long term relationship. It will involve anecdotes concerning Penelope's disgust with a friend who doesn't defer to her husband's captain role and instead emasculates him in public.

  2. Athol Kay says:

    I can't wait for it Ulysses. The wives like the book more than the husbands lol.

  3. Anonymous says:

    "It will involve anecdotes concerning Penelope's disgust with a friend who doesn't defer to her husband's captain role and instead emasculates him in public."

    I have a friend who does this. I absolutely hate it. Though I work hard to not let it, it makes the friendship more difficult as I find it more difficult to spend time with her when she does this.

  4. You shouldn´t only find the time difficult but positively be on your guard around manhaters like this.
    Because they very much despise your "traditional role" happiness and will do anything to make you as miserable as they are. Either by seducing your husband, or even worse seducing YOU into the same warped feminist mindset.

    Great article AK, lots of actual LOLs were had. :)

  5. Anonymous says:

    I've still always found it humorous that most people use the word "equal" as "completely the same in everything."

    You can have equal rights as humans without being treated the SAME EXACT WAY. Each person in my 3rd grade class as an elementary school student was "equal" but not all of them were treated the same. Seems our society has forgotten this and instead screams "sexism" at every chance. Sometimes, people make decisions because they are the best decisions for them, and that is not unequal-that's a personal choice.

    If you told your wife that she had to stay home with the kids BECAUSE she has a vagina and has XX sex chromosomes, THAT would be sexist. If she simply does her "worried mom" reaction and feels more comfortable staying home with the children, that is HER personality construct not some kind of Stepford Wife brainwashing.

    The beauty of you staying home and her not being worried generally means that:

    A) She thinks that you're actually capable of being a parent to your child (as opposed to a genetically related "babysitter").


    B) She probably sees you more in a more egaltarian way than you imagine.

    These are both good things because what I have noticed is that many women upon becoming moms also become control freaks and cannot give up any of the childrearing stuff to their spouses, (I am of the opinion that this is largely hormonal, because while I have always wanted to protect and care for children, upon having my own it is the most ridiculous and illogical thing to look at your kid and know that YOU WOULD WILLINGLY SUFFER TORTURE AND DIE to protect them. Having children overrides the self-centeredness button in most people, and it can be crazy-making) which leads to clueless dads who are basically robbed of having a meaningful parenting relationship with their kids.

    When I hear guys complain about how their kids are just child support waiting to happen and their wives are evil controlling shrews, the first thing that I take from those statements is that the wife does not trust him and cannot bring herself to relinquish much parenting responsibility to him, which also means she probably doesn't respect him all that much (and if he further proves this to her by playing XBOX while the kids run around the house drawing on the walls when she dares to take a shower or something, it will make her opinion of him even lower).

    Sometimes, my daughter wants mommy mommy mommy. There's no way that my husband can do anything about it. But other times, I'm chopped liver and he's the star of her life, so honestly, I would have to say that letting him be a FATHER and not just "that guy who hangs around the house and farts and grunts and plays video games" has not only made him a better more capable person but it has caused me to develop a more profound trust and love for him that would not otherwise be possible. Coming home and seeing her curled up in his lap after having fallen asleep while they were watching cartoons just melts my heart.

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