“Hero Dad,” sure, but mom needs an action figure, too

Categorized as 03/12/12 Grounds for Insanity column

Frankly, I think mothers deserve an action figure.  While daddies and kids seem to get by with two arms, mommies need roughly eight.  Sure, this will look odd on a plastic doll, but if you’d label it “Multitasking Mommy,” women everywhere would shout, “Yes!  That’s me!” and snap them up by the armload.  Feeling validated, they’d rush to buy the accessories, thrilled, at last, to be understood.  I’m seeing a national phenomenon here.  In fact, what I’m seeing is an entire line of products.  And if I’m going to patent this idea before taking it to Mattel and making a killing, I can’t be giving it all up here.  That’s why I won’t mention the Florence Nightingale outfit I’m designing for Multitasking Mommy.  Even now, I’m drawing up sketches of a perky, white nurse’s cap; sturdy, sensible shoes; and the square hypodermic needle she’ll carry for surly, truculent patients.  I think this’ll sell.  Okay.  So I already slipped and mentioned those arms, but what I didn’t say was that they’d be elastic.  How else is she supposed to wipe a runny nose, change a diaper, clean up spilled milk, pat a child on the back, scrub potatoes at the kitchen sink, and pluck Junior from the tabletop – all at once?  Hmm?  The eyes in the back of her head are a top-secret feature, too.  Don’t ask.  I can’t tell.  If I blabbed and told you they can see through walls, bagging little perps right and left, I’d have to – well, you know, and that’s not an outcome either one of us wants.  Of course, this doll will need clothes.  Of course.  A dirty apron is a given.  Consumers will know a clean one for what it is – a fake.  It’d never leave the shelves, so I’ll have my staff rub it with jelly, sprinkle it with flour, and dab ketchup along the hem from a small hot-dog muncher.  Even multitasking mommies need a night out once in awhile with the daddies.  Getting away helps them remember why they fell in love and made all those hot-dog munchers in the first place.  That’s why I’m designing a line of evening wear with lots of shoes and purses to choose from.  I’m drafting other pieces, too, like a lavish bathroom that comes with 49 locks and a tightly-fitting rubber door.  This way, the kids can’t slip notes underneath or tap urgent requests for “more cookies” in Morse code.  Multitasking Mommy will need a vast, cozy bed for those days when there’s no action left in her figure.  Optional accessories will be a bedside Keurig and a warmer for her slippers.  Regarding that apron I mentioned, I suppose the strings should be elastic, easy to cut.  In the past, this multitasking mommy has fretted aloud that her own apron strings may be cast iron.  To which her husband replied that he has “a blow torch for that.”  Maybe someday there’ll be an Action Daddy; very muscular, of course, and handsome.  Blow torch not included.  

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