Yesterday I drove to Non-Contiguous New England State to pick up #1 Son and his friend, Mr. Know-It-All, to come home for Fall Break. They have been friends since they were toddlers. It’s very odd to think back to solid little Mr. Know-It-All, who moved like a bulldozer, and teeny little #1 Son, who always seemed to have his head in the clouds, playing at age 2; the way they would circle the backyard at age 4 conversing intently about Chip’n Dale’s Rescue Rangers; the two of them at 7 playing the “Coachmen’s Protectors” in a production of Pinocchio at the Children’s Theatre of Maine; their modern dance duets, at age 11 and later 14, with a big red ball. Now I look at Mr. K-I-A with a full beard and #1 Son, well, at least with hair on his face, and I know they are well on their way to grown up. Last weekend we saw them in the play, No Sex Please, We’re British. It’s a long way from Pinocchio.
Our converation on the many hours drive home ranged from church history and hymnody to how geeky Formerly Methodist Currently Hiptastic University students are to the state of the relationships between young people, especially young men and young women. I wondered how our hypersexualized culture influences their day to day interactions. Mr. Know-It-All said he thinks overexposure demystifies things. I refered to an earlier part of our conversation, in which I described the Methodist minister at the church my family attended when I was in high school. He was very intellectual in his approach to scripture, with a high content of historical criticism and rational explanations. I remember feeling that he was missing the point of faith–it’s not that we need to swallow things as written or believe in them literally; it’s that we crave the mystery and the wonder, or we wouldn’t have religion at all. Mr. Know-It-All, who is Jewish, nodded. So what does that tell us about demystifying things?
Last night we had just a splendid evening with the three children. We went out to a favorite brick-oven pizza place, and when they asked how many, before I could answer, #1 Son spoke out happily, “Five!” We had a game of “The Dog” version of Monopoly, and after the Little Princess went to bed, the two boys and I watched our tape of the new ABC show “Lost.” It’s just the sort of quirky thing the three of us appreciate so much, and #2 Son and I wanted to share it with #1 Son. He loved it, too.
Today the boys and I took the dogs out to the new park, then went to Observation Day at the Little Princess’ swimming class. This afternoon we made an apple pie from scratch, and just now it is coming to fruition, filling the house with its autumn fragrance.
It’s good to have him home.