My 11-year-old son Optimist Prime has enjoyed a recent run of success as both the QB of his football team and the star of a theatrical production of The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. We’re anxious to have him around more as these two commitments often totaled seven to eight practices/rehearsals a week, and because he’s been so busy, I’ve had very little time to ask him about his future plans to use these successes to help him climb life’s social ladder. He agreed to sit down for an interview and allow me to ask him the secrets to his success.
Me: What’s your secret?
OP: Um…there is no secret.
Me: Do you feel burdened by greatness? Has the figurative weight on your shoulders affected your posture?
OP: That’s an unusual question…um.
Me: What makes you so much better than other kids?
OP: Nothing makes me better than other kids. Besides my success.
Me: When you hear a teacher say every kid is special, do you ever laugh?
Me: Do you ever look around at your classmates and shake your head?
OP: No. What?
Me: When you see your very average and untalented friends, do you ever feel so sorry for them that your stomach hurts and you feel like you’re going to throw up?
OP: No. What?
Me: Maybe you experienced symptoms other than nausea. Do your eyes ever itch? Do you ever sneeze?
Me: That might be a symptom of feeling sorry for your friends’ lack of success. How did your old friends take the news?
OP: What news?
Me: That you were breaking up with them.
OP: That never happened. My old friends are my current friends.
Me: Didn’t you tell them it was time to move on to more successful friends?
OP: No, why would I say that to them?
Me: I’m not saying you should be mean or callous about it. You could just say it’s time for you to all move on and get them a nice gift. Like a fruit basket.
OP: I’m not breaking up with my friends!
Me: Is there anybody you’d like to thank?
OP: For my success?
OP: You guys, I guess.
Me: Both of us? Not just one of us?
OP: Both of you.
Me: Who would you rather have dinner with: Abraham Lincoln, that one girl you like, Abraham Lincoln’s beard, or yourself.
Me: Who would get the bill?
OP: Probably the other me.
Me: But he probably wouldn’t be the type to get the bill either.
OP: I’d ask the waiter to hand him the bill.
Me: But the other you would probably do the same thing.
OP: Fine, I’d take the bill.
Me: But then wouldn’t he decide to get the bill and reach for it at the exact same time?
OP: I don’t care.
Me: What project are you going to tackle next?
OP: Writing a play. Writing my own play, I guess.
Me: Is there a part for a handsome father figure type character? Because that’s a role I can play.
OP: I’m still working on it. It’s still very, very vague.
Me: So you’re saying it’s still very vague.
Me: Sounds interesting. I’m intrigued. Do you have a message for all your fans?
OP: There’s a time for life and a time for living, the choice is up to you my friend.
Me: Very wise. As long as we’re on the subject of Who’s the Boss, can I ask, who was the boss?
OP: Do you want the real answer?
Me: I think I’m ready.
OP: Angela’s the boss.
Me: Interesting. Very interesting. Thanks for your time.