A page out of Dad’s book*
Last night while No. 1 and I were waiting for No. 2’s ballet class to be over, he asked me what we were having for dinner. He was sitting on my lap and I whispered in his ear “sloppy joe’s.”
He claims he doesn’t like sloppy joe, but I think he’s just like his mother: when he thinks he doesn’t like something or has already said he doesn’t like something, he feels obligated to maintain that persona even if he really does like it.
“And french fries,” I said.
“Well, I’m not eating it,” he said very matter of factly and defiantly.
“Well, that’s what’s for dinner and if you don’t eat it then you’ll be one hungry little boy.”
Fastforward a bit to me making dinner while feeding the baby in the highchair. No. 1 is upstairs playing with some kind of boat in the bathroom sink.
“No. 2,” I say, “Will you very quietly and very nicely go tell No. 1 that it’s time for dinner?”
When No. 1 comes downstairs, he comments on how good dinner smells and starts talking about how he’s going to eat the sloppy joe anyway.
“Well,” I tell him, “I decided that since you don’t like sloppy joe to make something else instead. I made crumbly burgers.”
“What’s a crumbly burger?” he wants to know.
“It’s a crumbled up hamburger with the ketchup built in!” I exclaim.
“Aw, man! I wanted sloppy joe,” No. 2 complains with a pout. (I just can’t win, can I?)
“Smells like a sloppy joe,” he says.
“Well, it’s a crumbly burger,” I tell him as I put his plate on the table in front of him.
“It tastes like a sloppy joe, too, but it’s good,” he says.
“Well, they’re similar, but this is definitely a crumbly burger,” I try to convince.
The Mr. walks in from work.
“Hey Dad guess what,” No. 1 yells. “We’re having crumbly burgers for dinner! It’s a crumbled up hamburger with the ketchup already built in!” he says as if having ketchup built in to something is some sort of reward.
“All right!” The Mr. says. “Crumbly burgers are yummy.”
“Crumbly burgers?” he says to me with a coy smile and a wink.
And now here’s the thing: he would have put up a fuss and a fight all evening if they were “sloppy joe,” but since they were “crumbly burgers,” he ate it all.
*Apparently, I used to refuse to eat onions (among other things). So Mom and Dad in their infinite wisdom told me that those weren't onions, they were leaks. And I, of course, promptly ate whatever had the "leaks" in it. Last summer when No. 1 and No. 2 stayed with Mom and Dad for four days, No. 1 claimed he didn't like onions. So, you guessed it, Dad told him they weren't onions, they were leaks. Naturally, he ate those. Not long after that, when I made my famous Swedish meatballs that happen to have onions in them, I quickly told No. 1 that Papa let me know how much he liked leaks so I made the meatballs with leaks instead of onions this time. The aresenal of parenthood groweth.