How to sloth: a technical guide to freaking your kids out

Turning into the sloth and slothing someone is a cross between a party trick and a horror movie. The transformation is quick, and yet once changed, remember that the sloth is slow. The terror is supposed to build, especially when you do it to your kids.

I file slothing under my other stupid human tricks, which include “eating a sandwich like a lizard” and “making myself look pregnant” (which I don’t do anymore, thanks abdominal hernia!).

How to turn into the sloth:

  1. Droop head slightly forward
  2. Stare straight ahead
  3. Raise hands to chest level with index and middle fingers plus your thumb to form a claw hand pincher thing (it’s obviously a three-toed sloth)
  4. Stick tongue out oh so slightly
  5. No blinking

Now you’re looking like a sloth! Way to go! Next? To be the sloth. Lock your eyes on a space about a foot to the right of your friend. Once target’s acquired, droop your head toward them and do not take your eyes off of the space next to them. The slow chase is on! Follow them wherever they go for however long it takes.

People unfamiliar with the sloth won’t always run. This is unfortunate for them and bully for you. Seasoned slothees will flee immediately. As the sloth, walk slowly, like you’re playing zombie tag or terminator. If your friend remains still or gets trapped, quietly perch on their shoulders (stand next to them with shoulders hunched and get within a foot or so of their face), gripping with your three fingers on each hand. Now don’t move at all, but slowly and slightly increase the pressure of your grip (not too hard) and turn your head to look directly into their hair or at their cheek.

Now, see how long they let you perch before they shrug you off! They just got slothed! Once shrugged off, find another friendly target and repeat. Go for personal records of of how long you can perch motionless.

My friend in high school invented the sloth, and would often take it to the next level. After about 10 seconds of perching, this person would call the slothee’s bluff of pretending to be cool with getting slothed. How? By licking their cheek or hair. Gross. My sloth doesn’t do this, mostly because if I do it my kids, they will do it to me. I already learned my lesson there with the cold water cup dump in the shower, or hiding for jump scares. The jump scares were especially bad because my kids can fit their small bodies in all kinds of places around the house and so definitely have an advantage over me.

Lastly, choose your sloth target carefully! If someone can withstand the sloth for an hour, you might be in trouble. The biggest shame for a sloth is to revert back to human form and slink away. Also! Do not sloth people without senses of humor. The sloth is slow and wide-open to even the weakest of blows. Grandma might deck you hard.

There you have it. Go forth and sloth, while keeping the old Montana speed limit saying in mind, keep it “reasonable and prudent.”

 

 

 

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