The Movie!


Why is Daddy Crying?

Click here to view the full size version at YouTube>



Meet the Insanity


The Wife



Get Updates!

Email Goodness
* indicates required

Blogs I Dig
Previous Ramblings
Search It

« If I Could Lick My Own Crotch | Main | The Teaching Of The 5-Second Rule »

1-2-3 Magic Can Suck It!

Well, truthfully…three years ago I wanted to make love to the inventor of 1-2-3 Magic.

It saved our asses from many many a bad habit. But I have to admit…we never actually read it. We just read the title and immediately said, “oh shit we’ve got this down pat. You say one…then two…and if they haven’t stopped by three they’re in time out. Let’s do this!!!!”

And, low-and-behold, with just the quick, yet stern, announcement of the number “one” children within our household would immediately stop the madness.

Then, their tiny little minds started developing. They moved from just barely being able to walk, to flying around corners, to kicking the cat when you weren’t looking, to trying to open your bedroom door while you and the Mrs. were making whoopie.

That’s when they realize, “why in the hell am I stopping at one? I have a whole other second to continue my madness right in front of my parents and get away with it!”

And so we watched as the daughter gave our boy a wedgie as we slowly counted, “one!!!!!.....two!!!!!!” and by then everything she’d come here to do had been accomplished.

So…we did what we imagined the book would strongly recommend…we sped-up our counting. The numbers one and two quickly became one word, “Grayson!!! Onetwo…”

“Daddy you didn’t even pause between the numbers!!! That’s no fair!!!”

Then it dawned on me. My kids are about to be six and eight-year-old. I shouldn’t be 1-2-3 Magicing their asses. They should respect and obey me damn it!!!

So, I downed a beer, slammed the empty to the ground, and called a family meeting.

“Kids!,” I said as I put my arm around the wife to seem as though we were united in this epic announcement. “No more 1-2-3!! From now on, if you don’t do what we say the first time, you go to your rooms without toys. Your mother and I stand firm on this. Now….be-gone and go be children!”

3.8 seconds later the boy was the first to challenge this new rule by standing between his sister and the TV. It was at that very second that I realized how engrained 1-2-3 had become in my life. And it was at that very second I wanted to set a date for my first of a dozen 1-2-3 Magic book-burning parties.

I couldn’t count anymore. I just simply had to lay the law down and end it.

But I catch myself all the time wanting to count to stop things that annoy me.

Behind a slow-ass driver on the interstate – “move damn it!!!! One!!! Two!!!!”

Trying like hell to get my insanely fast and agile puppy to come to me at 11 p.m. at night – “Marty HERE!!!! HERE MARTY!!!! One!!! Two!!!!”

The wife hoping that I last at least three seconds tonight – “OK honey, you ready to start? You can do this. I know you can. I believe in you. OK…GO!!!! One….tw….oh honey it’s OK, it happens to everyone.”

So, yeah! I never read the book. And I used to believe in the awesomeness of its title and what it did for our beloved family.

But now, I’ve come to realize 1-2-3 isn’t “Magic,” it’s a freakin’ “Lifestyle!” And I really really miss it.


PrintView Printer Friendly Version

EmailEmail Article to Friend

Reader Comments (15)

Ha! I laughed all the way to the count of 3! I'm actually reading this book right now so I can write a review. I'm not incredibly inpress and some of it's down right insulting! Stay tuned! (I may even link this post to it, you know, for added perspective)

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMommylebron

Haha, great post. I am going to utilize 1-2-3 at work today. In the midst of a boring meeting I am going to stand up and exclaim the meeting will be over in one... two...


September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterSimple Dude

I never read, nor heard of this book. Personally, I find the title a bit 'off.' There is no magic anything in parenting--just a lot of hard work to get it right. Of course, humor helps every situation, which you seem to have an abundance of :)

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered Commentertalktherapybiz

I had no idea there was a book like this. Did you make that up? I learned 1-2-3 from my mom. And now my kids have learned it from me and use it on each other.
A good modification that I have found is that if I even have to start counting they still get in trouble but the trouble is worse if I get to 3. So even though my kids are 8 and 5 they usually stop at 1. (Unless the crime is worth the punishment and then they get to 2, but NEVER 3 because that is when mommy turns into a a crazy woman that throws toys in the trash, burns down the streets of New Haven in her rage.)

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLauri

I'm with Lauri - I learned the 1-2-3 thing from my parents, start the punishment if I have to SAY one...usually it just takes me holding up a finger or snapping my fingers, just once...turn into crazy mad-woman if I get to 3...

I'd never heard of 1-2-3 Magic until I started directing parenting classes, where I was obligated to teach the 1-2-3 Magic books as part of the course. Those that embraced it liked it, those that didn't embrace it, didn't like it. I still have a preference for 'crazy mad-woman' approach. Even the dogs know to start acting right when I snap my fingers.

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterStephi

wow! you give drives til 2... i flip them the number 1 immediatly then the f word comes out as number 2 after that all bets are off.....

yeah any kind of parenting book can suck my ass... i'd like to just write one myself call 'parenting... do it yourself bitches'

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered Commenteraims

This is one of the funniest things I've read in a long time. It is so true! We also used the 1-2-3 thing but never actually read the book. It doesn't seem like a very complicated concept that would require an entire book. But like you, we found the counting thing just didn't work with a 6 year old any more. Sending him to his room immediately is much more satisfying than counting while he continues to torment his sister.

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterJulie

Jesus is magic. Just tell your kids that if they misbehave they will wind up nailed to a cross. I'm a Jew so I can say this without fear ;)

I have this stupid book and have used it as kindling. Watch it burn in one....two....three................oooh magic!

Oh and nice job daddeeeeeeee.

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterLady of the House

I just started the 1-2-3 technique and was really surprised at its effectiveness the first week. After that he just laughed when I got when I got to 3 and so now I've upped it to 5. I don't forsee this will be magic for us at all!

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterAlexandria

As they evolve, you must adapt.

Just skip straight to three.

The hell with one and two.

"When I count to three, you had better stop...THREE!"

They won't know what hit them.

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterIrene

This is hilarious... and oh so true. The 1-2-3 technique was effective at one point in time. However, my son is now four and it no longer works. I get to 2 and he says 3 for me... then laughs. It's time-outs now.

September 21, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMichelle

We have used 1-2-3 Magic since our 9 yr old was 18 months. Its always does the trick for us, however, you do have to READ the book to get the benefit...And, every now and then, you have to re-read the book for a tune up :)

September 22, 2010 | Unregistered CommenterMaj Mama

This cracks me up. You have never read the book and you think it sucks? The concept is pretty simple but if you had read the book you would know how it applies to older children.

I guess downing the beer before family meetings is the real answer.

February 6, 2012 | Unregistered Commentersickofretards

For those that said, their kids are laughing or joking before their parent gets to number are not using the method right. For those that have said, when I START to count my child runs or stops their bad are using the method correctly.
Dont blame your misuse of the method on the book. Re read it and understand it.

January 24, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterSofia

Author of this post admits She never read the book, and it shows in every line of her text!! there is way too more to this method. You clearly have no clue how to handle it right. If you read the book, as you were supposed to, you would know that certain type of behavior gets count of three right away, skipping the one and two part!!! This is just one example of how you really don't know anything about this method. Seriously, read the book first!

November 7, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterMe

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>