No. 5
My wife, Connie

I wanted to seed Connie higher, but she nagged me about clearing the table after dinner 19 too many times this week. Enough already. I have an ingrown thumbnail. Doesn’t she know how incapacitating that is? It makes playing video games difficult, and that depresses the hell out of me. I don’t see what’s so important about clearing the table right after dinner, anyway. It’s not like anybody is going to steal the dishes. Instead of nagging me, Connie should be thanking me for putting her in the top five this week. If it weren’t for the hot sex and the cupcake making, she’d be sitting at the ninth spot, just behind the goldfish.

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No. 4
My great-aunt Vivian

Great-Aunt Vivian returns to the rankings after a long absence. She had been off the radar ever since she failed to put money in the last birthday card she sent me. But this week I received a birthday card with a check for $50 in it. It wasn’t even my birthday. I guess she’s getting old and forgetful. Here’s hoping she acts old and forgetful every month. I used the money to buy myself a new video game, Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas. It’s fantastic. Even with an ingrown thumbnail.

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No. 3
My youngest son, Helmet

Helmet had a pretty solid week. He took long naps and never soiled his diaper under my watch. Helmet is sort of a special case when it comes to the power rankings, because he has to overcome having a dumb name. Why we named him that is beyond me. It sounded cool and hip at the time, but now I cringe every time I hear it. It doesn’t help that he has a gigantic head. His head is enormous. It’s like a giant helmet. He’s forever teetering.

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No. 2
My eldest son, Rory

Rory managed to wrestle control of the No. 2 spot this week. I sent him and Helmet to the backyard and told them whoever lasted longest without crying would be ranked No. 2 for the week. Then I went inside to eat cupcakes. Forty-one seconds later, Rory threw Helmet’s teddy bear in the water feature and we had ourselves a winner. Didn’t think it would be over that fast; I barely had time to finish a cupcake. Sure, some might say that it wasn’t a fair contest, given that Rory is a good two and a half years older than Helmet, but a win is a win. So what if Helmet doesn’t speak yet and has a dumb name and an enormous head? Rory won fair and square. He’s a fine boy. I can’t wait till he’s old enough to clear the table after dinner.

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No. 1

No surprise, really. For the 1,759th week in a row, I’ve proven myself to be the most powerful member of my family. Among the nearly half-dozen remarkable things I did this week was making it past the first level in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and putting the condiments away after dinner on Thursday night despite having an ingrown thumbnail that everybody keeps failing to comprehend the magnitude of. I also would like to point out that I finally finished reading that article in Parents magazine about “positive parenting” that Connie has wanted me to read so desperately. It didn’t really hold my interest, but I read the thing during the commercials on Fear Factor. I hope she’s satisfied. Anyway, all this hard work adds up to me topping my family’s power rankings once again. Given how I’ve been No. 1 for so long now, you’d think my family would show me some appreciation, but all I get from them is silence after I announce the weekly rankings from the intercom in my home-entertainment room. Sometimes it seems as if they’re not even bothering to listen to me. It’s not like my coming in first place is a foregone conclusion or anything. Sure, I’m a superstar when it comes to the power rankings, and it’s clear it’ll take something just short of a miracle to supplant me, but I wish they’d stop acting like such wussies about it. The way they sulk around the house, you’d think they all had ingrown thumbnails. They can be so weak sometimes.