As is usually the case, Mom’s job decided to send her out of town on a Wednesday night. Wednesday is dance day. Which means I get to sit in a room roughly the same size as a solitary confinement cell with a bunch of Moms, one other Dad, and a whole gaggle of girls 8 and under. I do it every Wednesday and have gotten pretty efficient at reading my Jeff Shaara novel about World War I while Kinsey builds me lego flowers and delivers me imaginary tea and biscuits with her dance class pals.
Today is different because Bailey gets to come too and sit (I use this term loosely) with me for 75 minutes. Keeping Bailey in check for 75 minutes is like trying to catch water. It’s messy and pointless.
So I planned ahead and brought along coloring books. And to my amazement she was good. And not on the usually sliding scale of Bailey goodness, I mean regular good-o-meter measurement. So was Kinsey and so was Riley. Amazing.
On the way home, the girls tell me they want it to be Silly Night. I made the mistake back in 2004 of introducing the concept of Silly Night to the girls while I was home with them on a Wednesday night while Mom was out of town. Funny how that works. Anyway, Silly Night is simply when we get to eat breakfast for dinner. So now, four years later, we’re still talking about Silly Night. The girls decide that they would like poptarts as part of Silly Night. They were so good at dance I agreed.
First we stop at the dry cleaners to pick up my shirts. Riley times me on how long it takes for me to go from my seat, inside and back again.
50 seconds. Not bad.
We run over to the grocery store and we do the same thing. I run for the poptarts and Riley times me.
“Okay 50 seconds is the time to beat right?”
“Right. I’ll start when you get to door of the store.”
“Why don’t you just time me from the car?”
“Cause you’re old.”
So I got that going for me.
I run into the store, grab the poptarts, breeze through the check out and I’m back out to the car.
“Hey that’s pretty good, Riley.”
“Yeah…for a Dad.”