Little Odd is, by and large, a typical all-American kid. Of course, what all-American means has changed over the years. When my dad was eight, the Depression was still lingering, and World War II was almost four years in the future. When I was eight, Jimmy Carter was the President-elect, disco was dying, and cassette tapes were the rage. So Little Odd will have to look back and figure out what was what in his day. But in 1938, he would have fit in as a 'normal' boy, and the same can said if he'd been cruising my neighborhood on a green plastic skateboard.
L.O. likes baseball, and he loves football. He avoids vegetables without being too obvious. He doesn't shampoo his hair when he showers most nights, although he wets it down, mostly. He eats a lot of Popsicles during the summer, so much so that his lips take on an unnatural orange, purple, or red hue for entire days. He wears pajama bottoms but no pajama tops; the bottoms he favors this summer are starting to show his growth and its threadbare knees. He loves his sister, unless you ask him. He gets along with his sister, or at least until he doesn't. He wakes up early so he can watch extra t.v. and not fuss with anyone over the remote; after all, it's summer and we are pretty loose 'bout screen time if there is no bloodshed.
He got his first athletic cup today, and after figuring out which way is up, came out to the garage where I was working so he could show me how hard he could smack his fist into his crotch. He was wearing a t-shirt and some funky Underarmor boxer cup-holder pants, and he stood beaming in the driveway smacking his front goods. As he slapped and danced like a drunk monkey, he quipped, "Mom says I have a huge package!" I kept a straight face and made him promise to not tell his principal, who happens to be be Mrs. Odd's boss, that or any details about his cup.
He likes frogs, toads, dogs, tigers, and whales. He thinks the Patriots should sign T.O. He plays so hard some days, it is tiring just to look at him. He wants to have really long dude hair, because either some kid in his class does or because Tom Brady does. On this topic, I can't be sure who influences him more, and it could be both equally. His coif looks vaguely Leif Garrett/Shaggy/Joaquin Phoenix ... think Commodus in Gladiator. And he went through a phase when he was mad about creating origami. He is getting so big, I strain to carry him to bed when he falls asleep downstairs. I used to pretend to strain when I lifted him up, whereas now I pretend it doesn't hurt. Go figure.
Like I said, he is all boy. Willing hugs for mom, subtly less so with me. His is pure joy; happy, healthy, funny, strong, smart. His Achilles' heal turns out to be silverfish, these creepy, two inch long bugs that crawl out of our drains in the basement. I guess his imprinting moment came when he was in the family room in the basement, half watching t.v., half napping. Apparently he sort of felt something on his face, so he swiped it away, and lo and behold, a two inch furry, alien-looking critter was crawling across his head. It was hard to tell exactly what unfolded, as he stormed up the basement stairs screaming at the tops of his lungs, flailing like a marionette puppet on speed.
With all that he has going for him, I guess a little irrational bug fear is totally fine. And to be honest, silverfish are just a bit too freaky for me, too. I guess that makes me just like Little Odd.