So Mrs. FTR's swell friends threw her a baby shower the other week. A heap of fun. I found myself touched, moved, thrilled, kerflunkeered, and plain besmotted by all the darling baby things--worlds more than I would have ever imagined (what with my practiced ironic distance and all).
The gifts were all generous and brilliant--not surprising given our brilliant and generous friends, and Baby FTR will start things out with lots of great and charming books and toys and clothes and rattles, but I was surprised to receive a Dad gift just for me, and a pretty damn great one. It was given by soon-to-be-Dad himself, Eric W., of happyrobot's "Teen News" fame, and it's called Be Prepared: A Practical Handbook for New Dads. It's smart, witty and well-designed, and looks like an old Scout manual. Reading it has settled my nerves some, and I've learned me a thing or two. I highly recommend it. Thanks Eric and everyone--lovely gratitude cards will be mailed hopefully soon (after the universe tells us the name and date to emboss on them, and to use either pink or blue envelopes).
But the funny thing is the cover illustration of Be Prepared reminds me of my old friend Jason (of happyrobot's "Dog Years," fame), a long-time Dad now, and handy with a checkered shirt and tool belt, so when I open the book to read some bit of amusing and handy advice, in my mind I hear Jason's voice saying "Prepare to be like me" or I look at the cover and think "Be Prepared, like Jason here."