Sand in the Gears

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One vowel can make a big difference

June 4th, 2011 Posted in Fatherhood, Snapshots of Life

Yesterday it was just me and my three year-old, Isaiah John. We were cruising down the road in my truck, past bars and tattoo parlors.

Yes, there are tattoo parlors in Wichita.

The sun was out, the wind was blowing, and we didn’t have anywhere to be for a couple of hours. It’s times like that when a man can really appreciate a cold one. So I turned to Isaiah, only half-joking, and asked, “Hey buddy, what say we go get a beer?”

“YEAH!!” he shouted. He sat forward in his car seat, eyes ablaze with excitement. Now, I like a smooth draft as much as the next fellow, but this reaction seemed inordinate, especially since at most he only ever takes a tee-tiny sip of mine and then scrunches up his face, pronounces it “too spicy,” and then demands lemonade. He’s practically a little Carrie Nation, this kid, without the attendant theocratic fascist mentality.

All of which made his enthusiasm for a brew suspicious.Β Then I realized. We’ve been reading this book at night, you see. And in it, the brave little cowboy has a big furry sidekick.

“Hey little man,” I called back to him. “I said beer. Not bear.”

His joyous face became crestfallen. He looked at me reproachfully. “Oh.”

Bad father. Must learn to enunciate.