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Who Won That Point, Daddy?

Daddy and Papa wake up during a Saturday morning getaway — with the kids — to watch the most competitive French Open final on the women’s side in years. The TV is not high definition. It barely has any definition. Without much exaggeration, neither the ball nor the score is visible from more than three feet away from the screen.

C (after one point): Daddy, who just won that point?
D: Sharapova.
C: Oh. (Pause.) Who just won *that* point, Daddy?
P: Halep.
C: Oh. (Pause.) Hey, Daddy who just won that point?
D (gritting teeth): Simona Halep.
C: Sharapova did?
D: No, Halep did.
C: Oh. (Pause.) Daddy, who just won that point?

Fisher tries to navigate the remote for the second TV: Papa, how do you change the channel? I want to watch Spiderman! Where is Spiderman? This isn’t working. Papa… Last night’s dinner roils. Strangers’ voices waft in through thin walls.

C: Daddy? Daddy? Who just won that point?

Every age has been great, but, just for the final half hour, it would have been nice to shove a bottle (or two) in a mouth (or two).

 

A Good Brain for Vitamin Seeds

Daddy takes the kids cleats off after soccer practice.

F: Oh! Daddy! You have a good brain.
D: Thanks, Fisher. Why do you say that?
F: Because you remembered to bring our regular shoes to soccer practice. So, now we can play on the play structure.
D: I sure did.

Pause.

F: Daddy, I have a good idea. You can use your good brain to eh, er, uh, remember to buy us some more vitamin seeds. Okay?
D (having earlier confessed to having forgotten to buy more chewable Vitamin C’s): Um, that is a good idea, Fisher.
F (smiling): Thank you, Daddy. Thank you really much.

Pause.

D (seeing no hint of sarcasm): You’re welcome, Fisher.

Under a Purple Haze, Part One

Daddy and the twins draw a Witchy Land picture together. At the end, Daddy starts making purple swirls in the valley between the mountains.

C: Daddy, what is that?
D: It looks like smoke, doesn’t it?
F: Is that purple smoke?
C: Why is there purple smoke there, Daddy?
D: I don’t know, guys. Why do you think there is purple smoke there?

Pause.

C: Something is happening there.
D: Do you think something is happening there that someone is trying to hide?
F: Yes. I think so.
D: What do you think is happening?
F: Um…
C: Tell us, Daddy.
D: Guess.
F: I thank that er, eh, uh, Kleodora is doing something bad.
D: Think so?
F: Daddy, do you spell Kleodora with a “c” or a “k”?
D: With a “k.” What do you think is happening?
C: Kleodora is doing something there. Tell us, Daddy, please.

Pause.

D: Nope. I want you to each think about what you think might be happening in this picture, what story it is telling, okay? Then, you can each tell me your story.
C: Then, will you tell us what is really happening?
D: Maybe. Fisher, are you on board?
F: What?
D: Are you going to imagine what is happening underneath that purple smoke?
F: Uh huh. Are those birds Oogala, Boogala, Makala, and Choogala?
D: They could be.
C: They are going to stop Kleodora!
D: Could be. Could be. Think about it and tell me later what you think might be happening, okay?
F/C: Okay.
F: Are you sure that it starts with a “k”?
D: Yes, I’m sure.

If Fisher can get past that “k,” it might be interesting to see what story they each come up with.

 

Flicking Poop

Daddy watches Fisher, barefoot, head toward the dog run, with a pooper scooper almost as tall as he is in hand. He just finished watering the pumpkin plants in the front yard and helped to transplant some tomatoes to sunnier spots in the back.

D: Hey, Fisher. What are you doing?
F: I am going to pick up the poop.
D: Don’t you want to leave that for Daddy?
F: No.
D: Okay, but Fisher?
F: What, Daddy?
D: Can you do me a favor?
F: Yes.
D (thinking it’ll be deterrent since he likes to be barefoot): Can you put some shoes on before you pick up the poop?
F: Why?
D: So, you don’t get any poop on your feet.
F: Oh! Okay! That’s a good idea. Thank you so super much.

Five minutes later, he has his shoes on and pooper scooper back in hand.

D (surprised at his persistence): Fisher, are you sure you want to pick up the poop?
F: Yes.
D: Where are you going to put the poop?
F: Oh! (Pause.) Daddy, can you get me a bag?
D (knowing that they are high up in the garage, thinking that’ll be the deterrent): Not right now, Fisher. But maybe in a little bit.

Five minutes later, Daddy notices Fisher approaching the dog run again, a paper bag from somewhere and the pooper scooper now both in hand.

D (stymied): Fisher, why do you want to pick up the poop so badly?
F: Because I like to pick up the poop.
D (knowing he’s never picked up the poop): You do?
F: Uh huh. And it needs to get picked up.
D (heading back there to supervise): Okay…
F: Daddy, you don’t need to help me. I can just do it, okay?
D (reluctant): Okay.

Daddy smiles and watches from afar as the boy child starts flicking poop and poopy rocks around, trying to land them in the scoop. Far be it for Daddy to get between a boy and what eventually will be a chore that he will only do with one arm twisted well behind his back. For now, it’s fun. Apparently.