So I’m watching both of my sons last Saturday morning (they woke up at 5:30am, just like me…no time to myself now unless I wake up at 4am, whatever…) my eight year old (Jack) finishing up his spring break, my seventeen month old (Dylan) throwing and breaking everything he sees.
I’m sitting at my computer. My wife is sleeping upstairs. I know she is sleeping because I can hear her snoring.
I’ve had a Mountain Dew, a 5 hour energy drink, a Clariton D (I do have a cold, thanks Dylan) with the pseudo ephedrine in it (speed), and some herbal adrenal gland pills that evidently boost your energy (herbal speed).
“Dad?” my eight year old, Jack, asks.
“What?” I say, making a mental note to interrupt Jack when he gets older and is sitting in front of his computer, or phone or whatever they’ll have then.
“How come Obama is bombing Libya?” he asks.
I look up to face him, stopping the video of the guy who puts 2,747 toothpicks in his beard I am watching on You Tube.
“Um mm” I begin, “Because the leader in Libya is mean and is killing all of the people that live there, so then Obama is trying to kill him before he kills all of them.”
That was good enough for an eight year old, I guess.
“Oh, that’s why” Jack got it. “That’s a good reason.Why is their leader trying to kill them?”
“I dunno” I say, not ready to go all “60 Minutes” with him. “Because he’s mean and mad at them.”
” Why is he mad at them?”
“He just is.” I say, thinking – can I get back to my video, JACK?
“Is Obama mad at us?” he asks.
“Sometimes, probably.” I say.
“Is he gonna kill us?”
“Why won’t he kill us when he’s mad?”
“Because he’s not like that.” I say, hoping I’m right.
“What if he did?”
“What if he did-what?” I ask.
“What if he killed us?” he asks.
“Then we’d be dead.” I say.
Okay, so I stand up, slowly, because of my lower back problems, and start talking:
“Jack, there’s just some mean people out there who do mean things to other people. Like bullies.”
“Why do they do that?” he says.
“I don’t know.” I say, “Some people are born and just want to hurt people, other people are taught how to hurt other people. It doesn’t mean that we want to kill someone.”
“You told mom you could strangle her, once.”
From now on my wife and I need to go outside to the garage when we fight.
“Not really strangle. A fake strangle.” I say.
“Just a phrase.” I say. “Some people actually try to go out of their way to hurt–“
I get hit in the back of my head by something heavy, and it really hurts.
I turn around to see my seventeen month old Dylan clasping and unclasping his hands, looking at his bottle on the floor next to me (I just filled it with Nutramigen powder and water – I even waited for the water to get warm).
I turn back to see Jack laughing like crazy, his hands on his stomach, he’s almost crying.
I turn around and Dylan is now looking up at me, still clasping and unclasping his hands, saying “Bye – bye, dadda – Bye-bye.”
I look back to Jack, who is still laughing, and I make a mental note (another one) to make sure he rakes the whole lawn this spring and bags all the leaves.
“People just do mean things to other people sometimes, Jack, and its hard to know why.” I say.
I turn back around to see Dylan leaning over toward a heavy metallic little Hot Wheels truck. He’s going to grab it and throw it at me. I just know it.
I bust a move and grab it from him. He starts crying.
And I didn’t even call NATO.