I’m not sure if my boys are getting too wise for me or just have too many wisecracks for me.
This morning I told Buster he had to change socks. “Remember last time, when your socks smelled so bad because of your stinky feet?” I asked. “I don’t want the stinky sock alarm to go off in school. Then everybody will have to evacuate the building because of you.”
He gave me that long, thoughtful, 2nd grade look. “Why does everybody say the alarm goes off, instead of the alarm goes on?”
I gave him that long, thoughtful, grad school dropout look. “I don’t know. It’s just what they say.” I pushed a pair of clean socks into his hand and ran away.
It’s Big Man’s sharing day. This is the modern way of saying he should take something for Show and Tell. In our Kindergarten, sharing is done by letter. The kids bring something to share that begins with the letter they are studying that week.
This week’s letter is L. We had hoped Big Man could take our Abraham Lincoln PEZ dispenser, but Lincoln recently went missing from our PEZ collection. As we sorted through our PEZ dispensers, I loudly asked the universe, “Where’s Mr. Lincoln?”
From the next room, came the universe’s terse reply, wrapped in Buster’s childish voice: “He’s dead.”
Big Man got an idea. “I think I might know where Mr. Lincoln is,” he told me, leading me toward the hall closet. “I think he’s in a blue or green bag. A teal bag.” At first, I didn’t understand his last description, so unready was I to hear a Kindergartner describe a color as teal. He rooted around in the closet and pulled out a bag that was plainly teal, to my limited understanding of blended hues.
Mr. Lincoln was not inside. The teal bag was a dead end.
We ran out of time before we located Mr. Lincoln, and if he’s hitching rides in colorful over-the-shoulder totes, we may never find him. In his place we sent PEZ Andrew Johnson. We rehearsed our story so Big Man could explain why he was bringing a J to L sharing. It boils down to this: “Mr. Johnson is here to announce the sad news that we’ve lost Mr. Lincoln.”
For all we know, he belongs to the ages now.