Tuesday, August 3, 2010

The daily insult. Possibly.

Tertius, the Seven-Year-Old With a Thousand Faces, does it again. He materializes with the waistband of his shorts yanked up to his sternum, a cardigan drooping off his shoulders, and a pair of round-framed, pink-lensed hippie glasses on his nose. He adopts a slumping, shuffling gait, and an odd voice.

"I'm Urkel," he claims, plausibly.

Ah, TeenNick, you scamp. Were it not for your feast of reruns, an entire generation of America's youth could grow up without ever knowing the blessing of Jaleel White.

* * *

But I digress. So all four male Beecheys are in a Rye Rec playground, and I'm explaining to Secundus, with diagrams, that the trip home on his bicycle will be easier if he traverses the long, steep hill behind his quiescent school rather than attempting a head-on attack.

"Dad, you have a new nickname," he says, unwrapping a peppermint. "'The Living Lecture.'"

The candy drops onto the sand, but he snatches it up in less than a second, and I refrain from comment. "Well," he continues, sucking the mint, "you're the Living Lecture who also cooks, drives us, writes . . ."

"Yeah, and none of those things make any money," I reply. "Ask your mother."

He looks thoughtful. Then brightens up. "I'll give you a mint," he offers.

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