So this evening, when I got to the house to visit Handsome, he had a question for me. It came after he had played his Wii for an hour while I was there, and was prefaced with the shyly smiling "Dad? I have a question."
It's the smile that always gets me when he does this. It's something he's kind of embarrassed about, but he wants to ask me anyway.
"When does the week start? Sunday, or Monday?"
"Well," I said, "that kind of depends on who you ask and what you are talking about."
"You see the calendar over there? On the calendar the week starts on Sunday, and some people count that as the beginning of the week."
"Is he asking about the week?" said my wife, entering the kitchen.
"He asked me about that earlier."
"Yeah," Handsome piped up. "And you told me to ask Daddy!"
"So he did," I said. "And here we are. So, the calendar start the week on Sunday. But school and work start on Monday, right?"
"So lots of people count that as the beginning of the week. And they say that since Sunday is a part of what we call the 'week-end', then it can't be the beginning of the week."
Handsome was shaking his head at how complicated I had just made it, so I asked the obvious question.
"Why do you want to know?"
"You remember when we talked about me getting an allowance for cleaning the TV room and my bedroom?"
"You mean, like, the talk we had about two years ago? That talk?"
"Yeah. I cleaned the TV room yesterday, and I'm going to clean my room now."
"Took you long enough!"
"But... for me to get an allowance... is it the same week? Or do I have to clean the TV room again?"
I was laughing.
"Hold it! That was a discussion two years ago. Yes, clean your room. Tomorrow I'll be here a little earlier, and we can sit down and talk about chores and an allowance, okay?"
He happily went off to start on his room.
Now, some of you might think I am taking advantage of the boy, having him do the chores before an allowance is even discussed. I say 'not so!' ". This is the boy who makes a large "TIPS" jar as the first step in making a lemonade stand. When he was seven I took him to the store and he bought himself a Wii with money he had saved. Now he is eight, and yesterday when we stopped at Dick's Sporting Goods and looked at the kayaks they had on sale, he remarked on the ones that he could afford to buy ; about half of the ones they had out at the sidewalk sale. Pretty much any of them that were $350 or less.
My eight year old son can afford a $350 kayak. I can't afford the $50 paddle.
When we sit down at that bargaining table tomorrow, I think he'll do just fine.
To tell the truth, I'm thinking of bringing a lawyer.
Talk to you later!