It's been said before, although it's always worth repeating: Just because you can reproduce doesn't mean you should. Nobody told that to Robert and Heather Absher, though. Unfortunately.
The parents to 6-month-old Auburn were out boating on the aptly named Falls Lake in Wake Forest, N. C., on Sunday, with the baby properly strapped into a Coast Guard-approved life jacket. That's the good part. The bad part? Baby Auburn was strapped into a Coast Guard-approved life jacket while also water-skiing.
The Abshers' third mistake (the first was procreating, second was taking the baby water-skiing) was posting a video of Baby Auburn water-skiing online. According to Us magazine, the video shows Auburn traveling about 150 feet with Heather running alongside him. Auburn looks calm, if not a bit startled, until he clearly seems distressed at the water spraying in his face, which is when Heather picks him up.
It doesn't take another parent—or a living, breathing, functioning human—to see this idea is fraught. With stupidity. With danger. With Child Protective Services. Oh sure, the Abshers are arguing it was OK because Robert is apparently a competitive wakeboarder (although, um, Auburn is not), the life jacket supported Auburn's neck, and because he was holding onto "a special railing that his father built from PVC piping." In that case ... wait, it's still really wrong.
Robert is claiming bragging rights because, at 6 months and 10 days old on Sunday, Auburn became the youngest-ever person in the world to water-ski. The previous record holder was 6-month-and-27-days-old Zyla St. Onge. (Cue the golf claps?)
The Abshers are defending the not-unexpected critics, saying, "We practiced before taking him out of the water. We put him on the ski for the first time in the living room. We just
let him stand there … and then I started moving him around real slow.” Robert also explained the way the whole thing was rigged so that Auburn "never would have been able to fall forward." He didn't say anything about falling backward, however.
Of course the funny part (if there's anything funny about this) is that 6-month-and-10-day-old babies are famous for learning things like water-skiing. Oh, wait. No, they're famous for learning things like not even crawling and smearing peas in the their hair. It's usually encouraging when parents teach their kids lessons, although usually those lessons are things like potty training, clapping their hands, and maybe eating and not smearing peas. That a 6-month-and-10-day-old baby managed to not die while his parents tried for internet infamy is good. That a 6-month-and-10-day-old baby still has to live with those parents, on the other hand, is probably not as great.
Still, the Abshers are standing firm in their son's accomplishment, with Robert writing on his Instagram page, "As you can imagine, I'm the proudest dad in the world."
Auburn Absher is the world's youngest water skier. As you can imagine, I'm the proudest Dad in the world. 🍼♥️😁🏄🌎🏆 @waterskiworld @waterski_mag @guinnessworldrecords #wakeboarding #waterski #watersports #prouddad @gopro