Saturday, September 1, 2007


You're busy, I know, what with growing limbs and organs and all. It makes me feel sort of lazy for having watched football all day. But I've already grown my limbs and organs, so I've earned it. Anyway, I'm writing because, quite to my surprise, I just heard you were on your way in and this seemed like as good a time as any to say hello.


Look, this is awkward, so I'm just going to completely honest. I'm afraid of you.

I haven't met you, but I know your kind. Small, loud, needy, constantly crapping in your pants. If I told you someone like that was on their way to live with you, how would you feel? Exactly. I mean, I knew we were officially 'trying' I just didn't think it would work. When I was like eight I jumped a big dirt mound on my bicycle and landed more or less directly on my testicles. I thought that would buy me more time. And while we're being honest, I don't find your kind particularly cute. I know I'm in the minority here, but frankly, I think you guys are a little freaky in a shrunken down old people kind of way. When it comes to cute, I'll take your average kitten or puppy. I'd even take a baby monkey. If your mom had just told me she was nine months away from birthing one of those, I'd be excited. A little confused, but excited.

But that's not the situation we're in. Instead, you're getting all fired up to start your life and in some way it feels like mine is coming to a close. I know, I know, it's a blessing. Circle of life, all that. But I said we were going to be honest, right? Remember how I just sat around and watched football today? You think you'll let me do that next season? You think you won't need something, or want something, or hate something, or break something, or make something. I can't afford a Swedish nanny to raise you like so many football fans are doing these days. And right now, with you being so abstract, it's hard to imagine all the things you'll be bringing to the table that will be more interesting than a top five team losing in an upset. I'm sure you've got countless tricks up your sleeve, but right now it looks like diapers vs. sportscenter. Wouldn't that make you want to run?

There's a host of other reasons to be terrified, not the least of which is that you're stuck with at least half of my genes. That's a hill we're both going to be climbing for some time. In fact, I could tell you things that would have you looking for a way back where you came from, but let's not get ahead of ourselves. Today isn't about you, it's about me. There's going to be lots and lots of days all about you in very short order, so let me have this one. Part of the reason you're so terrifying is that not only does it feel like a part of my life is over, but I'm not sure I spent it all that wisely. I don't think I went enough places or did enough things. I've never even smoked pot. So it feels like while you're on your way I should make an effort to shovel some things in. Would I love to go around the world climbing mountains and learning to surf for the next nine months? Of course. But I don't think that's going to fly with your mom. So I'm going to have to set my sights a little lower. Nothing crazy, just some flags I'd like to plant while I'm still a person instead of a parent. They're not going to seem like much, in fact when you open your eyes and see all this world has on offer, they may seem downright pathetic, but I've thought about it, and if I've only got time to scratch a few more things onto my resume before you show up, these are it.

I want to finish my novel.
I want to dunk a basketball.
I want to learn a foreign language.

Easy right? Well, not really. You'll learn we're not a tall breed soon enough, so the dunking thing is going to call for some Spud Webb (before your time) style magic. The language I've flirted with since high school, but right now you speak better English than I do French. And the novel, well, it's been in the works for a long time. To the degree in which procrastination is hereditary, I wouldn't be surprised if it took you ten years to get out of there.

Anyway, it's your first day, I don't want to overdo it. I'll keep you posted as we go. You just keep doing your thing, I'll belatedly get started doing mine, and with any luck, by the time you show up we'll both be almost fully formed.

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