an age that will live in infamy
April 20, 2009
But early on, we had some moments. I was reminded of this last night. See, my boy Holden will be 11 next month. The number 11 is important here. And last night, we were at Grandma’s house for dinner, and after dinner we all lounged on the back patio, basking in the beautiful (finally) weather, while the kids played in the backyard.
Holden wanted to play some basketball, but the only ball was a bit flat, so Grandma got out a new mini pump and needle. I screwed on the needle, spit on it, and slid it into the valve. So far so good.
I pumped up the ball and pulled out the needle. Whereupon the ball started leaking quickly from the valve.
“Did you “moisten” the needle?” asked Rick.
“Duh” I said. “And that reminds me of a story.”
The Christmas after Kim and I got married, we traveled to Chicago to spend the holidays with Kim’s family. Kim’s little brother, Daniel, got a nice football for Christmas, and I helped him inflate it. I’m pretty sure we forgot Rick’s “moisten-the-needle” part. When Daniel pulled out the needle, the valve came with it. It became my job to take Daniel to the sporting goods store to return the “defective” ball.
“Did you moisten the needle?” asked the dude at the store.
I looked at Daniel, who immediately said “No.” Which reminds me of Ghostbusters, and what you should always say when someone asks you if you’re a God.
Of course, what did I expect? He was 11 years old.
I know he was 11 years old because I’ll never forget what happened later that night.
Kim’s dad took the boys to the club to play platform tennis. I had never played platform tennis, which is an awesome game involving a mini tennis court, enclosed and raised on a heated platform, making it a great Winter game.
Kim’s Dad and I played against Kim’s other younger brother, John, and 11 year old Daniel.
At a key moment in the game, I made what I thought was a pretty great shot. I was pleased.
On the way back to serve, Kim’s dad looked at me in complete disgust.
“Nice. Way to drop-shot an 11 year old.”
11 years old. Holden’s age. An age that, like Pearl Harbor, will live in infamy.
Infamy is bad, right?