Monday, June 2, 2008

Cats In The Cradle

One of the nice things about being away is the warm welcome home I can always expect.

"Hey buddy, how'd it go this weekend?" I asked my oldest after I finished unpacking from my trip to the cabin.

"We figured something out," he said.

Youthful knowledge is so precious. "What's that?" I asked.

"We do just fine around here without you. You can get that apartment you're always talking about as long as you send us a check every month."

"That's sweet," I replied, thinking, It seems like only yesterday he was excited when I got home.

"Yeah, we didn't miss you at all," added my youngest before shouting "Woo-hoo!" and giving his brother a high five. Fortunately the middle child was elsewhere so he couldn't participate in this emotional flogging.

Digging through the refrigerator I found leftover steak. I took it out and examined it. My oldest caught me.

"That's Mom's," he yelled. "I made it for her last night. Put it back."

"It looks good," I said weakly.

"It was good. You can't have any. It's Mom's."

"So it would appear," I said.

"If you had your own apartment you could have steak whenever you want," he added helpfully while his brother danced another victory jig.

"I'd take the TV with me," I told them. It gave them momentary pause.

"We'd buy a new one with the money you'd have to send us," the oldest finally responded.

"There wouldn't be enough," I said.

"He's got retirement money!" shouted the youngest, turning excitedly to his brother. "We could use that."

"Sorry," I said. "That's not how the system works. Kick me out and you'll be lucky if the judge gives you enough to get a box of generic corn-flavored flakes for breakfast every week. Besides, I'll just head for a place without extradition."

"What's extradition?" the youngest asked. The oldest seemed to know, as he glared at me venomously.

"It means I can live on a beach with my TV and no worries," I told him. "Sort of like the life I have now except in reverse."

"What's going on?" asked the Lovely Bride as she came in the room.

"The boys were just saying how much they missed me," I said.

"Really?" she asked, skeptically.

"You bet. And I was saying how much I missed them."

"Uh huh," she said.

"Mom, what does extradition mean?" the youngest blurted out.

"It means your father's talking nonsense again," she said.

I closed my eyes, just for a moment, and imagined myself back on the dock.



















"Yes, nonsense," I said before giving her a kiss, to the great disgust of my sons.

"Well, I missed you," she said, kissing me back.

Good enough.

4 comments:

Adorable Girlfriend said...

The last part is very sweet.

To be married and have that...

Jennifer said...

Pretty picture.

billy pilgrim said...

umm, leftover steak?

I know what the words mean separately but I am unable to picture anything when they are used together like that....

Brando said...

"It means I can live on a beach with my TV and no worries," I told him. "Sort of like the life I have now except in reverse."

Fantastic line.

So this is what I have to look forward to?