I love to see the Popple smile, so I spend a lot of my time trying to get her to give me that big ol’ two-toothed grin. I make stupid noises and faces. I blow raspberries on her tummy and tickle her armpits. I dance around doing a hokey-pokeyish dance that I think is comedy gold.
Here’s the problem – the Popple doesn’t find me that funny.
She occasionally thinks I’m mildly amusing. A fart noise might elicit a little smile, and a raspberry might even make her giggle, but I can’t get her to really lose it with a belly laugh.
But Daddy? Daddy is HILARIOUS, apparently.
His faces are somehow much stupider than mine, his noises louder and grosser. His dancing is better, but that’s to be expected, since he’s Puerto Rican. He can even make her laugh by doing things that are objectively not funny at all – pointing to a lamp, clapping his hands, playing peek-a-boo when he’s clearly visible. As far as the Popple is concerned, Daddy is a world-class comedian.
When I try to imitate his best laugh-inducing moves, they’re met with blank stares. It’s clear that she sees Daddy as the fun parent, whereas I’m the one she goes to for the more serious stuff. When she wakes up terrified in the middle of the night, or she’s all bunged up with a cold, only Mummy will do. I’m number one for cuddles, which I guess kind of makes up for the fact that I’m number two (of two) for funniness.
She also recognises that I’m the best (only) maker of milk and that I have the best hair for pulling purposes – so there’s that. Still, I can’t help but wish she found me just a little bit funnier. I’m putting quite a lot of effort into my baby comedy routine, but she’s a difficult audience.