Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Shhhhhhhh it's a P ... E ... A

When I was a kid, my second choice dream job was in espionage or covert operations. If juggling the NFL and the NBA proved impossible, I would have been happy to end up with the CIA or the FBI. Actually, it was the French Secret Service that I dreamed about the most. Somewhere between undergrad and my first law job I gave up my dreams of covert operations and Bond Beauties.

Fatherhood has given me a second chance at fulfilling my dreams. Starting a few weeks ago, I have embarked on a dangerous and messy mission. I have been charged with the duty of secreting vegetables into my daughter's diet.

Recently Dipity has steadfastly refused any vegetable that isn't yellow and found on a cob. Even peas, formerly the darling of dinner, has become an incredibly tough sell. Every other vegetable is simply tossed on to the floor. I'm a stubborn mo-fo, and a vegetable-free diet for Dipity didn't seem like a great idea, so I had to fall back on less than ideal methods.

First I tried being mister tough guy. This, of course, was silly. I am but putty in her hands, and even when I try to be mean and demanding and it works I feel guilty and she screams and sobs. Besides, should I really be telling my toddler that if she doesn't eat her peas she'll have to watch her daddy eat the chicken and cottage cheese?

So, that left either surrender or subterfuge. In the words of the Boss, there can be "no retreat, no surrender." Thus, I find myself running the vegetable equivalent of the Underground Railroad, guiding perfectly good vegetables to a better and more useful existence in Dipity's stomach. I have purchased vegetable pasta. Peas, and everything else under the sun, has been shipped to their final destination under the cover of cottage cheese. Corn, chicken, and avocado have all been used as vegetable escorts. Now that Dipity has begun to see through these ruses, and demand that all food be placed on her tray for inspection, I must break out more devious plans. Tomorrow night Dipity will have macaroni and cheese and spinach. Next week, a special pea/tomato sauce will adorn her pasta. I have even considered placing vegetables into the pancake batter.

You might say that I'm living a dream. I won't argue.

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