Betty Duffy

Friday, March 6, 2009

We're So Proud of Our Son!

My oldest child is an entrepreneur. Being the good Catholic mother that I am, I had hopes that he might show an early aptitude for the priesthood, a certain spiritual acuity that might necessitate sending him off to Latin School once he turns about thirteen, on orders from the Bishop. Then we could, in a sense, brush the dust off our hands and, you know, call it a day on that kid. But that's just the way mothers work: get the kids married off as soon as possible. If he were a girl, I'd be arranging a marriage with one of the nearby Lords.

My husband thinks differently. Being the good mechanical engineer that he is, he has been observing the dexterity with which this child of ours has used his hands, and declared him "brain surgeon" at around the age of 18 months. Sitting in his high chair, our son was never happier than when he could use his index finger and thumb like precision instruments to arrange the frozen peas on his tray.

Yet, it appears we shall both be disappointed. Our son has chosen to follow in the footsteps of his aunt, an accomplished salesperson, with an incredible fondness for accumulating the greenbacks.

Before our son will have much success, we need to impart the lesson that "finding" money is not the same as "earning" money. Each day when my husband comes home, to change out of his monkey suit, my son is never far behind, collecting the stray dimes that scatter from his upturned pockets. Our son is rarely dissappointed when he is the first to check under the cushions on the couch after my husband has finished watching the "This Old House" hour on TV. I give the impression that my husband is a leaky piggy bank, and that's more or less accurate, but he's not the only source of my son's income. The other day, I discovered the mite box on the counter had mysteriously been emptied of all the change I had collected by following my husband around the house. And when I went to look for it in my son's cash box, there I discovered enough change to feed several African children for a week.

Yesterday, when we had an electrician at our house to do some work, my son wanted to watch. The electrician jokingly told him that it would cost him a dollar, and my son said, "That's OK. I have tons of money! I'm a tattoo salesman!"

Sadly, it's true.

This fabulous Medieval fort that my in-laws made for all kinds of imaginative battles with the toy knights has been turned into a tattoo parlour with a broader selection of skeleton tattoos than that of "Dr. Feelgood's Tattoo Parlour" on East Tenth Street.

By drawing his designs on paper towels with a marker, he then presses the artwork to the skin, wets the towel, and voila! The tattoo is transferred. Now he has the younger kids doing all the dirty work of finding spare change with which to buy their tattoos, and he collects their dues by plying his trade within the bowels of Tattoo World.

He even talked my husband into purchasing some skin art, which wasn't cheap.

When I was propositioned, I told him that ladies don't get tattoos, though perhaps he could talk his grandfather into reserving his bicep for a dancing naked lady tattoo. It would look great with that Popeye anchor on his forearm.


jenx67 said...

I think your blog will be very special to your boys when they are grown and you are gone. Do you backup? I need to do a post about backing up your blog. I read that on Faryl's blog. Speaking of Faryl - I had a lengthy feedback on Chuck's project on the forum. They might fire me from participation. =0

Betty Duffy said...

Jen, I saw your post on Chuck's site and I added a little fuel to the fire. I'm disappointed in how things have turned out with that project. I enjoyed Truant and Kristin, so I guess it was good for something.