Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Walking To School Barefoot. Both Ways.

I noticed since we've gotten back into the groove of things after the holidays, that everyone seems older.
I for one, am crotchety. I have this weird sinus thing and haven't been sleeping well at night since November - not to mention the daytime, which is punctuated by dizzy spells and bouts of throbbing pain. As a result, I have been buckling my pants well above my waistline, eating dinner at around 4:30 in the afternoon, and have no idea what kids today are thinking with their crazy haircuts, rock and roll music, and universal remote controls. In my day if you wanted to change the channel you had to get up and change the channel, and you were damn glad to catch a few shows before the test pattern came on.
Sam has a plan. He has ideas about robots he'll build, followed up by intricate diagrams and elaborate explanations of how it should function. He has plans to lead a healthier life, which include exercise programs and packing his own lunch. He wants to be a rock star, a chef, and study volcanoes. He talks about conflict resolution, quizzes me with math problems, reads(!), is fiercely competitive but rubs his Buddha in the morning and will gladly show you a yoga move, and gladly puts on a tie without a single complaint. A month ahead of time, he seems to have left being a five year old far behind him, and has his eyes dead set on 18.
Lily, who's creeping up on four, has become a woman of extremes. In the span of a day she is the most stubborn and demanding person in my life, and then is relentlessly affectionate. In her mind there is nothing better on earth than picking out her clothes, putting on high heels and getting her nails done - but she will gladly smear chocolate over her entire head. She seems almost desperate for Sam to love her, hangs on his every word, and the happiest moments in her life are when she can make him laugh... and then, in an instant, she'll take a deep breath and say, "Sam, you're annoying me." and it'll end.
Even the dogs have changed since the new year. Satchmo can barely see a thing, but has held up pretty well considering... I get to see his personality when I get home from work, he'll find his way over and shakes his entire rear half like mad just like he used to when I walk in the door, but these days I'm devastated that I'm the only one who gets to see it. There was a time when he would never back down from a bone, a ball, or a fight; but these days he can't be bothered, or just can't keep up. He'll still move Stella out of the way to sit next to me on the couch, and nudge me with his enormous head in the morning until I scratch him with my chin - but I end up carrying him off of the bed, into the car, and down the steps just like I did fourteen years ago when he was small enough to fit in my coat pocket. Stella has taken it in stride too. She's mellowed out too, no matter what my wife tells you, and has even eased up on Satchmo a bit, as if she was talking about him in a hushed whisper.
My wife, in part because she reads this blog, continues to get younger every day. Oh, and they're laugh lines, dammit.

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