that’s incredible, sort of

Wild-haired Oliver Fern devoured nine slices of cinnamon toast this morning, before school. It could be a growth spurt and since we’re talking about that rare six year old trucks-and-airplanes boy with dirty fingernails who loves broccoli like chocolate chip cookies I shrugged my shoulders and patted schmoodles of extra butter on ’em. Ordinarily, I might’ve protested such a bodaciously bready breakfast but he hasn’t seen his mother all week so I’ve been bending over backward with unusual pliability and sweetness (he even got to wear dirty underwear to school). I’ll start making eggs for the boys every single morning a thousand different ways.

Last week Wednesday, Adam had six stubborn baby teeth removed, after school. Well, not exactly right after school. For starters, he rode the bus home and walked those final steep blocks up our hill sans coat in the freezing cold for the umpteenth time notwithstanding my persistent pleading about pneumonia, him philosophizing in return with a victorious air on the proliferation of adult ninnies driving around the city in convertibles tops down, oft seen sunny wintertime Seattle afternoons. Then he had a humongous snack to hedge against that evening’s crazy mouth numbness, he eats bagels like mini-pretzels, piles ’em high with Himalayas of condiments. No wonder he was starving, he barely ever eats lunch because school doesn’t give kids enough time to eat plus the latter spend most of it engaged in chatter.  He walked back down into the shadowy valley for piano, crunching little piles of leftover snow on the way, gleefully making the horrible sound which you may or may not agree is slightly less worse than fingernails-on-a-chalkboard and it was after that we headed up the street for the tooth stuff. Later in the evening, per his usual household responsibilities, he dutifully insisted upon setting out to the curb, not only our garbage and recycling for pickup the following morning, but that of elderly Wilbur across the street. No doubt the dollar signs were cha-ching-ringing because that’s six teeth for the tooth fairy along with his allowance and I was glad he seems to be inheriting his mother’s indefatigable work ethic because none of the rest of us wanted any part in the transfer of Wilbur’s sanitation as the half-empty barrel lately has bore an uncanny olfactory resemblance to that of rotted Cream of Lutefisk hence suspicions some shivering rat possibly crawled through the hole in the bottom during the last snow day and drifted pleasantly off to sleep forever.

Adam and I gingerly trudged (my arches doth continually protest mightily having walked many deep-snowy miles last weekend in ridiculous duct-taped rubber boots in the search for icicle pictures the meantime my young lad skied a million feet out of the clouds in competition with little brother for coldest nose) our way down to the school bus this morning and observed a profusion of crocuses and I couldn’t help thinking to myself it’s more or less pretty green year-round in Seattle but right now there’s a little extra green, tuftkins all over pushing through dead, brown foliage. For goodness sake, there are still tiny blobs of snow leftover from earlier this month. February is growing smaller in the sideview mirror however objects are closer than they appear and what’s more, after six or seven bluebird days we woke to solemn gray this morning so my arthritic fingers are crossed to be on the safe side. It was a pretty fun month for the boys, they missed lots of school for snow followed by a ridiculous weeklong mid-winter break. It’s not that I’ve got a case of spring fever because I love these snow days that let me be with the boys extra it’s sorta the opposite my legs are buckling time was fast forwarded just so (although let’s be real, you can take only so much “quality time” with your children before the law of diminishing returns kicks in).  Really, I would like March to telescope a bit and not roll away so quickly…..

postscript: I wrote this yesterday. It snowed in Seattle this morning but the sun is shining. And the boys went to school.

8 thoughts on “that’s incredible, sort of

  1. Jason, you’ve a wonderful way with the English language. I glided through this story and it’s just like sledding, such fun and it goes by too quickly.
    Your son took out the trash after he had six teeth out? I’d have milked that for a couple of days off from chores and school. It gave a second’s pause, when elderly Wilbur was taken to the curb, but that was my usual brain short circuit, not your writing, and nice of your son to take care of an older neighbor, and not recycle him. And despite a really vivid-smelling bin. There’s some Sons of Norway lodges around here, and I’m hoping to meet someone who’ll invite me to one of their dinners, but going for the aquavit and if they mention lutefisk, definitely begging off.
    A real satisfying pleasure to read your posts, cheers.

  2. The objects in the mirror may indeed be closer than they appear — but they’re still behind you! Here’s to more crocuses in the near future, fewer excursions in the duct-taped boots, and no more mass visits for the tooth fairy. (MY GOODNESS, BUT I DO LOVE YOUR WRITING!)

    • I’m such a one trick pony bubble gum writer I’m really thankful for your support, Heide. You’re part of an exclusive corps of readership that has survived hell week (Tyrannosaurus Fir) and will now carry on with the knowledge that because they made it here they can make it anywhere.

      • Gosh … if only ALL bloggers were one trick pony bubble gum writers like you! I think you’re wonderful, wise, funny, and — most rare in this world — a one-of-a-kind original. I know I can’t convince you of that (because the really creative ones always doubt themselves) but I know it to be true, surely as I sit here. So bring on hell week! The more T-Fir, the better. 🙂

      • Wonderful, wise and funny? I don’t know about those, at all. To really be different being just myself in words on a page without enraging or completely putting off the reader with my affectedness or abuse of the English language? That would be a triumph. On the other hand, you’re all the things you just named, Heide! And I’ll be forever grateful to you for being a spark!!!!

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