So the boy comes bouncing into the room. This is a rarity as he usually only ventures out of his room to feed or beg for money. This time he tells me he has good news. His friend's mom came home early and said he could have company for the night after all. It is a Friday night, the end of summer vacation is looming before us like living with a terminal cancer patient.
Unfortunately for the boy I came home tonight and decided to dive into my favorite summer past time... my fruity gay drink. While I value my son's waning youth, in what he calls the final summer of his childhood: Next year he will be 16 and a licensed driver who has to work to pay for his underage 25 male insurance premiums as well as cash for gas and probably hookers. Thus he knows, his idle days of video gaming and sleeping til noon will have soon past him by, "Nope!" I stammer over my faded Eskimo Joe commemorative plastic cup of rum and Wal-Mart brand Koolaide. "That taxi ship has sailed. I am not getting out again tonight."
"But I wanna go to Jacobs!!"
"See if your sister will take you," was the first buck I tried to pass off. Then a thought occurred to me as I pictured my 18 year old daughter snuggled up in the other room watching movies with her boyfriend. "In fact, if you go in the other room and jump on the snuggle buddies and wiggle down between them... I'll give you a dollar!"
He looks at me with that sneer of adolescent morality and nicely asks his sister for help. "DO I OWE YOU A DOLLAR YET?!!" I yell out because I don't hear the screams of protest.
"No!" He shouts in reply. "I am not going to do that!"
My wife stirs next to me. She has fallen asleep while we watched Eureka. I don't know how she could, because I love that show! I tell her the boy needs a ride to his friend's house but I thought it best if I don't drive. Then I asked if she would be willing to take him. "Sure," she agrees in a tired mumble, "if I can just wake up."
Soon the boy wanders back into the den and slumps into the recliner. Defeated and dejected vibes radiate his sorrow into the room. "What did your sister say about taking you?"
"She said she would only do it if I gave her gas money," he said glumly. I knew he was penniless because he spent all of his summer money repairing his computer after he fried the motherboard last week.
"Well hey, I told you how you could make some money!" I encouraged.
"No I am not going to jump on them and wiggle in between them."
I wait. The silence builds. He begins to suspect his sorrowful broadcast is analog in a digital household when I happily tell him, "Hey Colin...? Mom says SHE will take you to your friend's house if you can wake her up first." Then I smiled as big and innocently at him as possible.
His eyes widened in surprise only to narrow in suspicion. "Wait... You're messing with me! You just want me to try to wake her up so she will be mad at me!"
"Colin!" I gasp in mock shock. "Why would I do that?! What could I possibly gain from that?!!" I always ask him this question when I am messing with him.
"You think it is funny when I get in trouble because you are mean!"
We sit in silence. He in shrouded in clouds of suspicion and me in what could only be called a shit eating grin. Finally I break the silence. "Hey Colin...? You know she really did say she would take you to your friend's house if you wake her up first."
"I don't believe you!"
"Colin...? Hey Colin...? You know what you need to do here?" OK so now I am laughing, I can't help it. This does not help sell my story and I really was being nice but he thinks I'm being mean... and I REALLY hate to disappoint my children. "What you need to do is decide what you want most. Do you want to go to your friend's house... OR do you want to believe I am playing a mean prank on you? Hmmmm Which is it Colin?"
He squirms and twists and you can see the battle play out across his face as he desperately needs to be with his friends. "Really? You would rather believe I am mean than try to go stay with your friend? REALLY?"
Just as he was about to break, my wife wakes up and ruins the game. She took him. He was happy. And best of all.... next time... when I really AM messing with him... He will never see it coming! BAHAHAHA
4 months ago