Your Mommy’s all right
Your Daddy’s all right
They just seem a little weird
— Surrender, Rick Neilsen
I’ve often heard parents with small children remark that they wish those kids would always be “that” age. The age where everything is a wonder, and parents are gods, and kids don’t talk back or ask for car keys or drink beer or any of 199 other things that come along as they grow up.
I’m here to say — again — that there is no part in the parent-child lifecycle so far that has disappointed me or failed to inspire pride and happiness. And this weekend underlined it for me in big black permanent marker.
It wasn’t one thing, it was a bunch of little things, one after the other, as I spent a happy boys weekend with Chris. He was awesome company.
It started Friday night when a bunch of people from ATC (our gym) went out to socialize. Chris and his girlfriend came along at my invitation and while they sat off by themselves, not really interested in hearing us recount Legends of Flop Sweat, they were also constantly in the middle of the evening for me.
I said “have whatever you like and it’s on me.” A review of the bill at the end of evening made me laugh at the furiousness with which that invitation was embraced. Two types of beer. Tequila shots. Rum. Oh, and food. So awesome to be young.
They met a bunch of my friends and politely listened to beer-fuelled stories of gym life and we laughed all the way home. It was really fun for me.
The next morning after I worked out, Chris and I went out to lunch and then went to see Batman vs Superman (a ridiculously stupid premise for a movie but, hey. Boys weekend) and it was as bad as the reviews suggested it would be.
But again we had fun and went home for the next part of the weekend.
We rented a movie off pay per view (Hateful Eight) and before that hung out listening to music — Beatles, Stones, classic rock mostly — prepping dinner (steaks and salad) and laughing. A lot.
We were using Apple Music and Chris queued up Surrender by Cheap Trick — not sure why — but we cranked it up and as wet heavy snow fell — not floated, it FELL, with purpose it seemed — from the sky it just felt like, well, a perfect moment.
If his mom had been home, Chris wouldn’t have been hanging with me. And his brother was locked in a library 2,000 kilometres away, enduring silly SnapChats from his brother’s weekend.
I’m smart enough to know not all kids are as parent-friendly as mine by this stage in life. Chris has always had an enormous heart and I was grateful for his company and the laughs and silliness.
He’ll never know how much fun I had and what a gift his time was for me.
We’re all alright. We’re all alright. We’re all alright. We’re all alright! Goodnight Wisconsin!