The girls weren’t listening to me. My wife had said to keep them out of the wet grass, but they wouldn’t keep out. Then they spilled their bubble-blowing soap on the sidewalk. “It was an accident,” they claimed.
It was no accident, let me tell you.
They wouldn’t stop “washing their hands” in the puddle. “Daddy, we’re just WASHING OUR HANDS!” shouted the little one. Sure, technically it’s soap. Maybe. Kind of. But it’s on the sidewalk. Round here, we think of the sidewalk as something that is “dirty.” So that wasn’t going to fly with the boss (my wife). I pulled the plug and said, “That’s it, we’re going back in.”
Three games of Sneaky Squirrel later, I pulled the plug on that, too. I have about three games of Sneaky Squirrel in me, and that’s it. A man can only stand so much angry shout-crying when the spinner lands on Sneaky Squirrel and someone’s acorn has to get stolen. Round here, no one wants their acorn stolen. Hence, the angry-shout crying. Hence, three games, tops.
When the Frozen matching card game began, I’d checked out and fired up the Interwebs, so I don’t know why the Frozen cards went flying across the room, I just know they did. Fighting ensued. I should have allowed my youngest to “work” on the computer when she saw me fire it up, as she shout-asked. That would have prevented the fight. But I was the one who wanted to “work,” dammit. So I said no.
I knew it was a mistake, and I made it anyway.
Not twice, though.
After I broke up the fight, my youngest asked again if she could “work” on the computer.
“You bet,” I said, and hoisted her onto my lap. I opened Word and she typed her name. Then her sister’s. Then Mommy. Then Daddy. I had to help her spell Daddy, but not Mommy. Interesting.
She typed Grandma and Nana (I had to spell those too). Then she demanded we print. Printing requires a trip to the basement, where the printer is, because trying to sell the house, so staging.
She took the printout and ran it up to Mommy. Mommy read the names out loud and said, “Very nice! Is that all the people you love?”
That’s why folk know how to spell her name, I thought.
“Yes!” said the Little One.
“Yay!” said Mommy.
When the Littles ran back to me, I was knee-deep in the Interwebs. And lo! What had I found? The new teaser for the new Star Wars movie. I scrambled to find some ear buds, which were too short to reach to the computer from where I was sitting, because staging.
I only had one ear bud in, and my eldest demanded the other. Youngest shouted at me for the other, not wanting to be left out. Which meant I got left out. Although I could still kind of hear. (They were holding the ear buds up to their ears, not knowing how to put them inside.)
Eldest said, “Is this Star Wars?”
I said yeah.
She said, “Cool! I love Star Wars.”
She’s never seen Star Wars. She’s five and a half and has never watched anything not mostly educational. Not for long, anyway. She’s caught some Disney Channel animated Star Wars stuff, mostly by accident, and mostly for really short amounts of time, so she knows there is such a thing as Star Wars, but her concept of what Star Wars is is wrong. All wrong.
I’m not going to go into what Star Wars is, other than to say I’m old enough to have seen the original movie in the theater. I was six at the time. And like every other kid who saw that thing at that age, I imprinted on it. Big time. If I’d been a duck, I would have left my own duck mother for it.
And I’ve been waiting for the day when my daughter would turn six and I could watch her watch Star Wars for the first time. Here I must pause and say you either get what I’m saying or you don’t, and there’s no point in my trying to explain it any further.
And then all of a sudden I realized that both of my daughters were sitting on my lap, listening with one ear bud each, watching this new teaser with me for a new Star Wars, and they were happy and excited about it, even though they have no idea.
And then a 72-year-old Harrison Ford appeared on-screen as Han Solo for the first time in 32 years, and he said, “Chewie, we’re home.”
I have no idea what the context of that sentence is within the movie, but the movie looks like it might actually be good, or at least might not suck like the last three did, and my daughters who are 4 and almost-6 were sitting on my lap sharing ear buds and going “Awesome!” And I kind of teared up a little bit.
I know that’s a little ridiculous. But I did. And it’s not about Star Wars, although it kind of is. It’s about what you love. And what you loved as a kid. And about having kids. And sharing what you loved with your kids. And watching them love it. And having kids. Even when they won’t stay out of the wet grass. And they spill the bubble-blowing stuff on purpose. And fight. And want to “work” with you when you want to be the one “working.”
They turn on the tv and I start typing this post.
“Look how much Daddy’s working!” says the little one.
They keep asking what I’m writing about and I tell them “you guys.”
“Can you read it to us?” says the big one.
And that sounds like a great idea.
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