Down the Memory Hole
My son Hale confuses adjectives sometimes. In particular, he says, "Daddy, I'm boring," when he can't find anything he wants to do. I hope I never forget that.
This reminds me of something my father used to say, nay, bludgeon me with when I was young.
"Dad, I'm bored," I would complain on those small-town summer days.
"That says more about you than anything else," he would say (with a warning tone), or "That says more about you than about your options."
That's so true, but I don't think I understood it at the time. I think that's a father's job: saying important things when his children are young and impressionable that they won't understand until they're a bit older, when they would be less likely to hear it.
Anyway, the reason for this post is what I perceive to be another fatherly duty: remembering all the funny things kids say so as to have good stories later. Frost had some doozies with first pronunciations, like "fridge-a-frator" for refrigerator and "daco-done" for telephone. She loved teletubbies as much as Hale loves dinosaurs and Winter loves puppies. I have seen all three of my kids fall asleep face down in a bowl of spaghetti, each in the same white-and-green plastic baby booster chair. Each of their first birthdays featured chocolate cake. Frost and Hale did what I did as a one-year old and smeared it all over their faces. Winter was dainty; despite being probably the messiest eater of the three at that age, she ate her one-year old birthday cake neatly, with a fork.
I may never forgive her that.
Often, memory has a sweetness that approaches pain.