The long weekend

Friday evening my daughter asked me what we were going to do for Labor Day.

“Nothing,” I said.

“We’re not going to do anything to celebrate?”

“That’s right.”

“Why not?”

“Eh” (note: I’m surprised she let me get away with this one.)

“What is Labor Day?”

“Do you want the long answer or the short one?”

That’s code in our house for: “do you want to spend the next thirty minutes of your life listening to me pretend I’m smart?”

“I don’t know. Do I want the long answer?”

“That depends. How much do you want to know about world politics in the twentieth century?”

“The short answer then.”

“It’s to honor people who work.”

“That sounds boring.”

“If it quacks like a duck….”


“What I meant was you’re right, it can be kind of boring. But it can be kind of nice depending on what you make of it.”

“Why don’t kids have any holidays?”

“What do you mean?”

“Well, there’s mother’s day and father’s day but no kid’s day.”

“What, you aren’t satisfied with Christmas, Halloween and birthdays?”

“Adults have birthdays too.”

“True, but have you ever noticed me and your mom never get as many presents as you and Adam, and more of the presents we do get are boring things like clothes?”

“Ohhh… yeah. So we’re not going to celebrate Labor Day?”

“I didn’t say that. I said I wasn’t going to do anything to celebrate.”

“Actually, you said you were doing nothing to celebrate.”

“Right, I’m going to do nothing to celebrate. Don’t you think it’s kind of appropriate?”

“So you’re going to celebrate by doing nothing?”


“You know you’re not making a lot of sense?”


“Dad, has anyone ever told you you’re strange?”

“All the time kid.”

We both chuckled. I know we’re related and all, but sometimes I’m surprised by the easy rapport I have with Beth. I hate to think it’ll all disappear when she enters the dreaded teen years. Tonight, out of the blue she put down her math book and said to Cheryl, “you know mom, I think you did a pretty good job picking dad.” I inhaled more of that glass of water than I swallowed. “What?!?” she said. “Nothing,” I replied, “you’ve just got a funny way of putting things sometimes… funny in a good way.”

I’m riding a high even politics can’t bring down.

It turned out we did do something. Saturday and Sunday were pretty much washed out by the fringes of whatever storm was passing through this week, but Monday was a good day to live in Florida. Even a guy like me can appreticate a summer day in Florida once in a while. It was still freaking hot, but you get used to it after the first eight hours or so. That or you’re finally beaten senseless and can’t tell anymore. Still, it was pretty cool (you know what I mean). I got the yard work done and still had the energy to get out on the bike with Beth and spend a few hours at Honeymoon Island with the family. It was one of those days that invloved no advance planning but turned out great. I know I’ve said it before, but I love those days.

Give the gift of words.