Before popping in unannounced, tally your points to ensure you are a visitor of the wanted persuasion.
- Were you invited? They said: “Come today!”? Deduct 10 points for any misunderstanding. Proceed with caution.
- Vague offers (“Let me know if you need anything”) = no points. Specific offers (“I’m sending dinner Thursday”) = 300 points. Leaving food/gifts on the porch and texting upon departure? 350 points.
- What? Ring bell for a quick peek? No! Minus 30.
- Nugget is sleeping, but you’ll see Mama for a quick hug? Stop. She looks awful. Get your hug elsewhere. Lose 30.
- You have expectations about how this home should look? Knock off 50. Offer help with cleaning? Add 150. Desperate to share oodles of unsolicited advice? Get a journal.
- After begging to hold the baby, you bristle when asked to wash your frigging hands? Then you decline sanitizer (although you’ve likely touched some combo of fecal matter, semen, and airborne bacteria)? Notch off 50.
- Staying several nights? Really?? You better be damn helpful. General midday help (having heard, “Boy, you’re helpful!”) = 300 points; 4 a.m. shift = 600 well-deserved points; overnight help = a shit-ton of points. Not helping, preferring to crash in the back room for several months? Get lost. Surrender as many points you feel you deserve. Now take off double.
- Are you bringing animals, requiring the hosts (parents of a GODDAMN NEWBORN) to put their pets outside? Scram. Dock yourself 100 points for being a bad person.
- Have you confused your phone with a walkie-talkie, using it exclusively on speaker? You converse loudly as if the person on the other end is 25 feet away? Might we experience them at full volume, so the home feels exponentially more crowded? Running a Facetime experiment with uninvited relatives, launching your virgin broadcast from the living room? Kindly place your phone in the nearest toilet. Snuff out 100 points.
- You’re visiting despite being around someone with excessive mucus, vomit, rashes/secretions? Bang off 400.
- Push your agenda for a circumcision or baptism? Chisel off 300. The parents already chose a ceremony, and you offer assistance? Enjoy 300.
- Walk their dog = 50 points. Take their dog for the month = 1,000.
- Ding off 100 points per offense if you: (1) Have inappropriate questions about how the child was conceived/adopted; (2) Deconstruct the baby’s appearance, assigning features to each parent; (3) Go heavy with perfume (who wants their baby’s head reeking of Obsession?); (4) Leave boxes for relatives in the area, thereby using the newborn’s home as a box depot until the uninvited-box-recipients pop in for pick-up sometime this month.
- Plan to grab IT support for your pesky gadgets from the new parents? Minus 50. Ask to borrow money? Double that.
- High maintenance, are you? For Christ’s sake, bring your special tea bag and socks for your cold feet. You eat gluten-free but will root around for a quick nosh when your blood sugar drops? Have your head examined. You require brown sugar since Stevia gives you headaches? You are an animal and belong in the zoo. I’m not discussing points with you.
- Your aunt/brother/grown-ass-uncle wants to tag along? Drop them at a daycare. If your son is home with fever and a bout of diarrhea (but he’ll stay in the corner), you are a moron. Do community service or perform a random act of f*cking kindness.
- You kiss the baby’s hands? Forfeit 200. (Seriously, why must you facilitate this most blatant germ transfer? If you cannot do this math, take a math class instead of coming.) Piss off 100 points for being a clueless dolt.
- Need points? Tell Mama she looks amazing. Bingo, 300 points. Add that she’s doing a fantastic job and triple that.
- Is there a Grieving Toddler home? Don’t dare ask if they are: (1) Loving their new best friend (they’re not); (2) Proud to be a big brother (they’ve done nothing to deserve this); or (3) Having fun with their new baby (WTF with this question? Does the baby look fun?) Get on the floor, build towers, play tea party = 200 points.
- Bring tools to assist with furniture assembly = 100 points. Never lift a finger but marvel how much assembly is required these days? Lose 50.
- Grab photos for Facebook (after Mama mentioned this is the longest she has gone without a shower)? Drop 200. You crashed the birth and photographed seething Mama before getting shooed away? Deduct 400. You now have pictures of Mama’s genitalia (in your mind or camera)? Liquidate all points and start over, asshole.
- You find breastfeeding/pumping as worthless as Trump? Lose 100. Go live under your covers.
- Plan to bring flowers and request a vase upon arrival? No. Chop up fresh fruit = 50 points.
- You end each correspondence with, “No rush to get back to me.” = 50 points.
- You ask: (1) How much weight did you gain; (2) Is maternity leave relaxing; (3) How long must you keep up this breastfeeding business; (4) Will you try again for a girl/boy; (5) This is what you wanted? Hop a summer rush hour subway wearing polyester and faux fur. Hack off 300 for your senseless f*cking interview. (More if this occurs in the hospital.)
- Were you a perfect mother? You think the only way is to breastfeed? Formula-feed? Overfeed/underfeed/not to feed? Forfeit 50 points for ruining a mother’s day at some point.
- Ever require space in someone’s fridge, so you threw away pumped milk? You are a monster unworthy of my point system.
- The parents open your gift and thank you, so you insist they not send a note = 50 points.
- You drink heavily before crashing on the couch? Forget points — get help.
- When the baby sleeps, you leave. Don’t dally 15 minutes because that’s a full night’s sleep for Mama = 50 points.
Over 500 points: Baby nurse status! Call me!
Positive numbers: Stay 20 minutes. If Mama does not beg you to stay, GET OUT.
Negative numbers: Freeze! Mail a gift and get some therapy.