Gnat has a big spelling test tomorrow, and asked what would happen if she didn't get all the answers right...He goes wishy-washy after that, but whaddayawant? He's from Minnesota.
...and I said she'd go to her room for nine days. I said it with mock seriousness, of course. "No you wouldn't," she said. Oh, but I would. "What else?" You'd be in there with . . . snakes! "And what else?" Spiders. A room full of spiders. "Tarantulas?" Dozens. "We don't have any tarantulas." Well, I'll have to order them. "So order them." I will.
I picked up the phone.
"Really call," she said. So I pushed buttons. I faked a very good conversation with a tarantula supply house, if I may say so.
"Order two," Gnat said. I waved her off: not now, hon, I'm on the phone.
"Credit card," I said. "American Express." I took out my wallet and read the numbers, complete with expiration date.
In retrospect, it was the expiration date that did it. Her shoulders shook and she got that look: what if it's true?
Friday, December 08, 2006
How To Be a Dad
James Lileks is my hero: