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BOTD 8/26/15 "The Joke's On You" A Dimitri Production

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David M. Katz

A Dimitri Production

You are a widower with one son and you are a firm believer in "keeping a boy in his place."  You married a widow who had four kids when Ivan (your son) was twelve; a little more than a year ago.  Your wife has turned all matters of discipline for the boys over to you.

Despite being called (behind your back) "Alex the Terrible" by the boys, a moniker you secretly hold pride in, Ivan retains an indomitable sense of humor and takes great enjoyment in playing practical jokes on people.  There's never anything malicious but there have been rather several messy outcomes courtesy of Ivan's antics.

Despite living on a farm or being in a rural setting most of her life, your wife has quite a fear of birds. Ivan has spent about three months raising a young bird he discovered in the barn and 'training it" to sit on him and move on command.  

Today he has it in mind to give mom a bit of a scare.  He brings "Blackie" into the living room and grabs a reference book on birds from the bookshelf and calls for mom to come over as he needs something.  Hearing your wife's deafening scream, you run out of the den/office to see young Ivan thus:

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Once you calm the missus down, are Blackie and Ivan going to the barn and is Ivan's rear about to "fly the coop?"

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.

David M. Katz

Aw, Blackie is cute and I am impressed that Ivan has been able to train him.

So, Ivan seems to have pulled off a poorly thought out "joke."

I think this rises only to the level of some burning ears about what is and isn't appropriate with a suggestion that he apologize to Mom.

Blackie needs to be on a perch in the safety of Ivan's room or given a safe home in the barn. Mom and Blackie never need to encounter each other again.

Hmmm . . . a "poem" comes to mind:

Four and twenty black birds baked in a pie . . . Twisted Evil

Cleverly disguised as a responsible adult.


I agree with Katz. But I'm sure, having had many conversations with Dimitri, that that isn't what happened.....


If Ivan's mom has an irrational fear of birds that is not Ivan's fault! Ivan;s mom needs lots of exposure to get over her fear!

In any case NO punishment for Ivan!


Y Lee Coyote

A family trip to see that heart warming film -- The Birds directed by Alfred Hitchcock.  Ivan has obviously taken after his father and should be rewarded by continuing things.

But in all seriousness, when your sons give you such a horrid nickname making you sound like an evil father in a Dickens' novel, you better find out why and solve the problem.



Editor Extraordinaire
I can't put myself in the place of Alex, knowing what I do about him from Dimitri. I agree with the previous posters about the sane way of handling things.

(Icono, I'm not sure immersion is the best way of treating a phobia. Systematic desensitization is likely to give better results.)



Agree w/David. And YLC.

M. Python wrote:Pining for the fjords?!


I'm going to ditto Katz and kier

I'm sure the outcome was a trip out to the barn stall..... Neutral Neutral Neutral

Hugs kal

Last edited by kalico on Wed Aug 26, 2015 2:39 am; edited 3 times in total (Reason for editing : Stupid iPhone keeps eating half my post)


I think poorly thought through sounds about right. Ivan and I will have a chat and he will say sorry to his Mom. Unless there is any reason to believe he and Blackie would excite such a reaction from her. She by the way will be having therapy. Afterall there are 4 other boys and they don't need a hysterical Mum. We will keep a bird house for Blackie in the yard and keep it well supplied


Mum in therapy in the 70's?!?  If only!  As I said to Katz when I sent this in, "you KNOW what happened, right?"

When I saw this pic in the line up my mind went straight back to that day in early '76.  I was floored when 'Blackie' didn't immediately take flight when Mum screamed as she did.  Had we been in a city, I'm quite certain someone would have called the police on suspicion of a murder being committed!  Of course with Alex, being what HE was, the 'murder' was fast in its arrival!

He had a very big sense of "treating women (especially your mother) right" and saw this as total disrespect towards Mum and therefore "Alex the Terrible" was about to right the wrong as only HE could.   (BTW, it wasn't until after I was 18 and left home that I found out that he knew what we called him among ourselves and his "pride" in having us refer to him thus.)  "Blackie" did hang around that summer then he flew the coop with his fellows in the fall.  Vanko had his intro to the crop courtesy of this 'sense of humor gone wrong'.  He ended up with 2 times his age from the strop and another 8 with that vicious instrument and dad certainly didn't 'spare the horses' in laying into Ivan; his rear was mincemeat for about 3 weeks. affraid   Would you believe this still didn't squelch Ivan's propensity for practical jokes?  What finally did it was a prank that involved one of our cars that resulted in a beatin' so bad that the kid needed 4 days off from school to recover from when he was about 15-16.  

As a parent of teens myself I knew how I would have dealt with this and it's nice to know my fellow Bransom dads agree with me; this was a chewing out and life should have moved on.  Unfortunately Ivan decided to temp fate and he paid for it in FULL!!!


Coat of Arms for Ivan the Terrible is two birds. Sorry. I just couldn't resist.  Rolling Eyes


Depends on the "birds" one has in mind! Wink The flying kind or the kind we deployed behind his back and we were VERY careful to make certain he never saw those birds "in flight". Razz

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