At some point in JP’s infanthood I started referring to alcohol as “Daddy Juice.” I don’t remember exactly when, but it seems likely that it was pretty early on, probably when he was old enough to reach for my glass of beer/wine/sangria, and for me to pull it away, saying, “Now, now. Not for you, boy. That’s Daddy Juice.” Ha! Hilarious!
Then he got old enough to start repeating it, which he does, and so do I, and it’s one of the incredibly, undeniably cute things we do together as a father and son. Joking about alcohol–now that’s comedy!
This past weekend I went over to Matt’s house for a barbecue. We were having a wonderful time in his little garden space until Sasha pushed her grubby paws out for Matt’s glass of white Zinfandel (he’s that classy) and Matt pulled it away, saying, yes, that’s right: “Now, now, Sasha. Not for you. That’s Daddy Juice.”
Forget the fact that Matt is stealing my kid-schtick. If that doesn’t bother him, then it doesn’t bother me. But for the first time I got to hear just how ridiculous that saying is. Daddy Juice? I won’t go into the variable ways in which that phrase can be categorized as kinda weird, other than to say, when you think about it, should Dad really be drinking Daddy Juice? Admit it, you were thinking it too.
What’s more, it begs the question, why use the phrase at all? Neither JP nor Sasha have any more negative context for the terms “wine,” or “beer,” or “bathtub gin,” than they do Daddy Juice. For whatever reason Matt and I think it’s fine to drink in front of our child, fine to buy liquor while accompanied by our child (and don’t those wine store folks find it amusing when I refer to their product as Daddy Juice when JP dashes a bottle of 1986 Chateau Margaux to the floor?), but it isn’t fine to say the word booze?
Fatherhood: an excuse to be cheesy.