Saturday Gelato

Posted on September 17, 2011


My ten-year-old son, Optimist Prime, invited a few friends for a sleepover last night.  When the doorbell rang, he asked if I would get it and when I returned with his friend, OP was reclining on the couch reading War and Peace.

I was so proud all the lessons I had taught him about how to impress people had not fallen on deaf ears.  I can’t decide whether I’d be more proud of him if he were actually reading War and Peace instead of just pretending to read War and Peace.


Today was a sad day for my oldest son as his best friend of four years left China and returned to Italy.  When I woke up this morning everybody was crying.  Optimist Prime was crying because his friend had just left on an early flight.  The Fonz was also crying; I assume his tears came because this boy’s parents let him play video games a lot more than we let our kids play, and now The Fonz didn’t know where he was going to get his video game fix.  My wife was crying because she felt bad for both the boys or because the pancakes she was making didn’t quite turn out.  I entered the scene still wearing the Star Wars t-shirt I slept in, and after I gave OP a long hug, I realized his face was pressed up against Darth Vader’s, and I told him, “Years from now when you look back on this moment, remember it was Darth Vader who comforted you.”  This made him feel better and he’ll look at the Stars Wars movies in a whole new light.


You still have one more day to submit a caption in the caption contest.

Here’s an interesting fact: not one of the previous caption contest winners was attacked by killers bees this summer.  Does winning the caption contest guarantee you immunity from killer bees?  The evidence isn’t yet conclusive, but yes, yes it does.


My sons were talking about how OP was the most popular kid on the bus, and The Fonz took exception and tauntingly explained, “The only reason you’re the most popular kid is because you make everybody laugh.”  I had to explain to him that this was an explanation for popularity, not a disqualification.  He seemed really surprised that popularity might not be entirely out of his control.

Posted in: Columns