Georg Cantor: Although your partner has never said “OCD” out loud, you feel judged while ironing every pair of your toddler's striped Burberry socks. You acquire gourmet items in sets: sakés, sriracha sauces, sorrows. Near dusk, bedtime in sight yet unapproachable, you ponder the nature of infinity. When an empty-nester observes how the days are long but the years short, you neither point out her logical fallacy nor assault her with your violin bow.

Bertrand Russell: You're an atheist with three passions: love, knowledge and children. Even before the twins were born, you'd begun to compile every published parenting study into a comprehensive text. Only exhaustive rigor could ensure a solid foundation for your kids. It's not your fault that they're dropping out of college for a couple of Christian hairdressers. Common sense suggests you abandon your unfinished magnum opus, “The Principles of Parenting.”

Early Wittgenstein: You've solved all childcare problems. Despite a sizable trust fund and family history of suicide, you consider hands-on parenting to be an elementary proposition. Sometimes you want to smack your only child, an insolent creature who wears shorts and suspenders year round. From your many admirers you demand silence, for parenting postulates cannot be spoken of. Unfortunately, nobody is sure what those postulates are, although you are without doubt a genius.

Late Wittgenstein: You've ditched the brat and moved to a monastery.

Alan Turing: You're awkward, lonely, and—despite being English—lacking in irony. Your tween, who lives with the ex, seems to double in maturity every year. Weekend parenting is a tough code to crack. Your gifts are age-inappropriate (e.g. the Snow White graphic novel that hints at incest) and your impromptu intelligence tests make her uncomfortable. Even so, she's your proudest legacy.

Kurt Gödel: Your three well-adjusted daughters idolize you and your remarkable intuition into young minds. You refuse their pleas to host a parenting podcast, firm in the belief that childcare truths cannot be enumerated. Their devotion infuriates your spouse. Why do you get to be the fun one without taking on any of the emotional labor? Alas, your fate is to be misunderstood, your idealism abused by such purveyors of postmodern poppycock. (By the way, your intuition that your spouse wants to poison you is correct.)

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