Sippican Cottage

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A Man Who Has Nothing In Particular To Recommend Him Discusses All Sorts of Subjects at Random as Though He Knew Everything

Mission Accomplished

I work all the time, but make little money. That’s a bad combination for my family to put up with. I’ve tried lately not to work on Sunday so much, and my younger son has started getting wild idée fixe notions about what we’re going to do on the seventh day. And what’s possible.

By the time Sunday rolls around, we’re going to camp on the dark side of the moon using a rocket we made in the basement with cardboard and tape and eat bearburgers and ride mooses in races with movie stars and split atoms with kitchen cutlery and catch fish that would strain a politician’s mettle to claim they’d caught bigger. We’re going to find an extra moon on Pluto with binoculars and dig up dimetrodons and shoot an apple off every head we see. You can lick thirty tigers, today, surely, Dad.

Above all he wants to make a video. He wants to make one that would give Disney a truss to lug around the Oscars; grind Pixar to pixels; make Freddy Wong foreswear muzzle flash forevermore. He wants YouTube to send him a Nobel Prize.

We have a snapshot camera.

He was upset a little. His grand plans of building castle sets from legos, only bigger than a real one, and making his head turn all around in a circle met the immovable rock of our time and circumstances. I told him the secret that the penguin nun with the sweet face told me all those years ago: You need to tell a story? You need the five Ws.

And so he supplied himself as the Who and his things as the What and summertime as the When and his house as the Where. He drew out his little storyboard with an unsteady pencil while I sipped my coffee with one eye open.
     “You need a Why, son.”
     “To make people smile.”
Mission Accomplished, son. 

19 Responses

  1. Great stuff.
    Made me miss my kids' younger years, too. But if you can't occasionally miss some of the best times of your life, what's the point?
    Thank you for the jab in my memory ribs.

  2. Thank you for the smiles. It appears that whether you have money or not you can still live richly. My son had the same rug in his room, brought back many memories.

  3. My compliments!

    My son, almost ten, has the same ability to stop-motion clean up the Legos all over his room. Okay, I made that part up.

  4. Standing Ovation!

    With extra points for the cute walk-on and the introduction of McElligot's Pool into the mix for literary heft.

    But….. would it be too much to redo the Producer credit and add "With an Assist?"

  5. As others said, your post touched all Fathers and Mothers and made us look back fondly. But, On Sunday i went with my youngest son and watched him at his first Tri. Swimming biking running, not so different than when he was 11 or so. Enjoy your children and look forward to their next adventures no matter what the age!

  6. Lucky boy. We used to make our own radio shows with a tape recorder. Once, we created a murder scene in the living room using splattered ketchup and hair I cut off the little sister's head, and then we played a record of Beethoven's 5th Symphony while we pretended to be dead for dad when he came in from work. We were going to record his reaction. He didn't see the creative virtues in our production. Apparently.
    In his case the five Ws were all Whats: What have you done?
    What the hell?
    what the f#&*?
    What are you WAITING for? Clean this mess up, and one long wailing WHY?
    Good times.

  7. Quality at every stage. Can't define it, but know it when it's there. You have wealth beyond money and our society would be richer to stop and take a moment to notice and learn. Such a future-and present, of course-you and your family have. May you be blessed with more laughter and a bit of extra cash to buy some misery to enjoy.

  8. Suggestion for little boy.
    instead of holding arms stiff at sides while stop motioning down the street, FLAP ARMS!

  9. A day in the life…

    One of the biggest blessings parents can bestow on their children is to show their children that parents enjoy their children, that their children bring joy to the parents.

    Mission accomplished.

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