My Son The Calvin

In the amended words of Braveheart: “I give homage to Bill Watterson.” Anyone who has read Calvin and Hobbes and watched Braveheart will understand these references.

My son is Calvin. In the actual words of Braveheart’s girlfriend “He declares it to me, I swear it.” My son plays in the backyard. He comes inside with grass stained knees. He manipulates me to maximize his time outdoors. He has a vivid imagination. His hair sticks up at odd angles. He even has a Calvin-esque face.

My son is Calvin.

Just today we were outside digging a hole because we had nothing better to do. It began to thunder and my daughter said, “We should prolly go in ’cause thunder is scary.”

I said, “Yeah. Let’s go in.”

My son said, “Can I do one more dig?”

I said, “OK.”

My daughter and I headed for the house while my son scooped his last shovelful of earth. As is his adorable/frustrating custom, he then scooped and second, third and fourth shovelful. We were close to the back door when the most ridiculously close thunder strike I’ve ever borne witness to struck our general vicinity. My Calvin ran from his dig spot, eyes tightly shut, toward the house.  He was on a collision course for the door frame. I grabbed him and, with fatherly concern for his safety, yanked him backward.

When we got in the house he was screaming and sobbing all at once. “You left me!”  He screamed.

“No.” I asserted. “You had your eyes closed! I didn’t leave you. You kept digging even though I told you not to. I was here. You almost ran into the house with your eyes closed!”

“OK.” he said, sobbing heartbreakingly.

I held him close in what I hope was a reassuringly fatherly hug.

He agreed that I had not left him; rather I had helped him. He hugged me tightly and soaked my shoulder with his needless tears. My heart broke.

He was so scared I could barely contain my shame. At the same time I blamed him for not listening.

I do my utmost to insure his safety. He is the sweetest disobedient boy that anyone could ever dream. His cheeks are consistently darkened with dirt. His knees remain green. He always has a cut, bug bite or friction burn somewhere on his little body.

He is my Calvin.

He scares me to death, but I love him to death. He is the world’s greatest, most cliché little boy.

Calvin and Hobbes may be a reminisce from the past, but my son is a continuation of the classic little boy spirit.

I love him, and my two daughters, with a love that rivals the love of chosen Deity for the creation of faithful subjects.

Calvin and Hobbes is a deep, heartfelt and spiritual classic and my son is a continuation of this beautiful legacy.

He is my Calvin.

He is a consistently filthy, imaginative and tiny creation of the Great Architect.

I thank the Creator for this tiny, vulnerable and OK with who he is miracle  of the Milky Way cliché on a daily basis.

I  bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…enjoy your children for who they are.

A don’t…judge them for their foibles. They are doing the best they can in a broken and confusing world.

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Thank You Pizzas, Abe Lincoln, A Bit About Evolution: A Socially Awkward Man Struggles With Unfamiliar Issues

Imagine me as a caveman. I know you’ve likely never seen my face, but imagine it anyway, in caveman form. Now, imagine me meeting Abraham Lincoln who, I imagine, would say: “Four score and seventy million years ago (I don’t believe in evolution and am not ashamed to express this due to certain freedoms laid down, in Lincoln’s time, four score and seven years ago. I’m not sure Lincoln believed in it either, but who am I to speak for him? If you hold a different opinion, I offer no judgment. I simply ask the same in return.) our forefishes committed certain acts that ended in the two of us now meeting! I find this occasion pleasant and am pleased to make your gentlemanly acquaintance.” To which I, in caveman form or not, would likely respond in a series of guttural grunts and snuffles. I would wish to say: “Well met, good sir! Thou art a kind and noble soul, freeing those who suffer the utmost oppression and worrying thyself sick at the mortal cost of such actions. Would that a long and prosperous life were to avail itself to thee, thou man amongst men.”

But…

…I am socially awkward. So such an auspicious occasion as the one previously described would likely result in just the grunts.

I bring this up because today I watched a young girl for a friend of my ex’s. She is about the same age as my oldest daughter, so keeping her entertained was not an obstacle, but I worried myself sick about the silliest of things.

What if this girl is simply a spy sent to report upon the conditions of my household? I have nothing to hide, but exes have a way of making ammunition out of thin air.

What if her parents are angry that I let them play outside most of the day? I supervised them and utilized sunscreen, her parents sent a bathing suit with her, yet, what if she is an indoor child?

What if she has a mosquito bite?

What if the lunch I prepared was not considered nutritious enough?

And on and on my mind raced as I attempted to drown these thoughts in a book about Lincoln’s assassination while I sat in a rocking chair in the shade under the eaves of my house as the children played.

All this worry to no avail. Her father arrived, picked her up; it is now about six hours later and no ill report has reached my ears. All must have went well.

But…

…Her mother texted me shortly after she left and expressed her intention to have a pizza delivered to my family as a means of thanks. I expressed that no thanks were necessary. I understand the struggles of working and raising children. I am only too happy to help. However, I know how I would feel if I allowed someone to aid me without compensation, so I said that pepperoni is fine. Only if they felt it necessary, though, should a delivery man darken my door bearing cheesy, saucy, crusty, meaty goodness.

They felt it necessary, and the reward was much enjoyed!

But…

…The delivery man was the girl’s father. He works at a pizza place right down the street from us and he brought us two boxes filled with fresh, medium sized goodness and again expressed thanks on behalf of himself and his wife. I reiterated that it was not necessary but much appreciated.

As he left, I nearly vomited with worry. Another awkward social situation I’ve never dealt with before had arisen. Are you supposed to tip the thank-you-pizza delivery driver when the thank-you-pizza delivery driver is also he who wishes to thank you?

I didn’t…

…I’m worried that I either should or shouldn’t have.

Sometimes I dislike my brain.

I bid you adieu…and a don’t.

Adieu…study the social sciences so that you know how to respond in situations like the one I’ve just described.

A don’t…worry yourself sick over it like I do. Pizza is great and should be lost to the toilet through the southern, rather than the northern, orifice.