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Day 11. in which Alex and Dana attempt to watch a movie.

The past several years I have only participated peripherally in the outside universe. There are a lot of things that have occurred of which I have a vague sense, and of which I have not fully consumed. I also have a sense that I probably didn't miss much...

What I mean by this is that when you become a parent, you tend to become very aware time, or specifically, how very little time you have. So, you don't waste time in the same way you did Before Children.

Of course, time has not changed. But as a parent, you find yourself on a regimented schedule, much out of the sake of necessity and maintaining mental health. I remember a time in which I did not wear a watch. I wouldn't ask what time it was, but about what hour it was? Now I am scheduled down to the minute from the moment I roll off the air mattress to the moment I collapse into the air mattress.

Dana and I decided we would watch a movie after getting the kids into bed. At first, it seemed like everyone would cooperate. Grandpa can't ever make it past 8 p.m. His very ability to speak becomes a challenge by this hour of the night. Seth was away for the weekend, although at his age, he wouldn't interrupt a movie, anyway. Liam crashed. It appeared as if Lily had crashed. She's generally amiable about retiring to her bed at's keeping her there that can be problematic.

Dana and I thought she was sleeping, and we spent a good half hour deciding just which movie we wanted to order from Pay-Per-View. Surprisingly, Dana and I agreed that the preview for The Namesake looked good - this surprised me that Dana wanted to watch this, too, so I quickly ordered it before he changed his mind.

We share a bedroom with Lily and Liam. Once upon a time, our bedroom was actually two rooms, but some genius predating us decided it would be great to rip down the wall and make one large master bedroom...obviously, someone who didn't have a family as big as ours...However, because the room was once two, it is quite large and is divided in such a way that we are still able to maintain some semblance of privacy.

My job is volume-control. Dana is no good at volume control. It's actually kind of irritating, and I imagine I'm a bit frustrating to watch a movie with because I am so particular about volume-control. I hate when it's either too loud, or too soft, so through the entire movie, I'm constantly turning it up or down every few minutes, which also brings up this visual volume prompt on the television screen. It irritates me, so I'm really surprised Dana has never jabbed me for it, or even complained about it. However, volume control is a serious job when you share your room with two tiny children, because you don't want to disturb their sleep. So, there I am, every few minutes through a course of a movie, turning it up and turning it down. Inevitably, we miss a lot of the movie this way - mostly because it's too quiet.

Now we thought Lily was asleep. But then I noticed across the dark room Lily pop up in her bed. I could tell she was watching us. I elbowed Dana, semi-motioning with my head. I didn't want him to actually look at her, nor did I want her to know we noticed her, or else it would be all over.

Because of the volume control, we missed a great bit of the beginning, which I think may have been vital to the overall plot. There was a lot of emphasis on the son in the movie, and his name, which was Gogol. I think the point was the father wanted to come to India with his wife, and had been in a horrible train accident. Right before the train crashed, the father was talking to some old guy on the train about some book and traveling and I don't really know what because I couldn't hear anything... and then the boy grows up in America and is distraught about what a weird name he has, and acts like a general snot to his family - not just because he is completely disconnected from his heritage (though he is), but also because he resembles a typical American teen. So, he's rude.

Does the make sense? Exactly. It didn't quite make sense for us, either, although I'm certain if we had actually heard it, it would have been intelligible.

Eventually a small Lily crawled out of her bed, and stealthily inched her way across the bedroom. It's not quite her fault. We tend to send her conflicting messages about bed time behavior, because sometimes, we just miss her and really don't mind her climbing in with us. But other times, we are either exhausted, or desperately need some downtime together, and we resist. So you can't blame her for trying.

We ended up - the three of us - in the kitchen, having a pseudo-midnight snack (for it was really only around 9 pm, which is technically speaking, our midnight...) of tuna fish sandwiches in the dark of the living room. Probably also not a good habit to instill in our daughter, but I never claimed to be the perfect parent...It was fun, anyway, hanging out in the quiet and having a snack.

We never did see the end of the movie. We said we would today, which is silly. I think we both kind of knew we wouldn't really have time to watch the movie today, either. But we pretended like we would, so we wouldn't feel bad about paying for it and not watching it.

In the end, it wasn't such a bad Friday night, even though we didn't get to watch the movie.