Sunday, September 9, 2012


Dear Spike,

You were a little tough to rouse out of bed this morning — at least until I reminded you of what we were doing.

“Soccer,” I said.

“My game?” you asked.


You rolled out of bed and hit the floor. I did your hair — “racing pig” tails — and helped you slip on your shin guards. We went to the park, passed the ball around a bit, and waited for the other players to show up.

They did. And promptly kicked our butts. Oh well. Afterward, we voted on a team name. The contenders were “Sharks,” “Ninjas,” and “Cosma-Cats.” I couldn’t get a majority for any of those names, though, so I made an executive decision: Our team is the Ninja-Warrior Cosma-Shark Cats. Yup, that’s what happens when democracy fails — a dictator shows up and makes ridiculous decisions.

After the game, our family went to the Downtown Farmer’s Market. We ordered coos-coos and lentils from our favorite Sudanese vendor. We picked up peaches, plums, a few pears and plouts, some onions, poblano peppers, a canary melon and cheese. We walked by a man with no arms who was playing the guitar and singing.

We when got home, we rode our bikes to your gaky and papa’s home to harvest some tomatillos, then returned so that I could grade some papers and you and your mother could work in the yard. A few minutes later you came inside with a pumpkin that weighed nearly as much as you do.

It’s harvest time, around here, and the community garden was holding its annual tomato sandwich party. So we all took a walk to the garden and joined a couple hundred other people listening to music and eating some fresh tomatoes — and pesto! (It should really be a crime to write pesto! without an exclamation mark, you know?)

Back home again. We racked the wine from the grapes you stomped last weekend.
Then you read some books. I graded more papers. You and your mother headed to the farm supply store to pick up some chicken feed and pet some bunnies. I was just happy you didn’t come home with any.

After that, you and I headed over to our friend Bill’s house to watch the second half of the Oregon State-Wisconsin game. The Beavers won in a big upset. The fans stormed the field. You and I sang the Beaver song.

Back home again. Burgers for dinner. (Meat for you and your mom, black-bean patties for me.) Grilled onions and mushrooms. Fresh tomatoes. Toasted mutli-grain bread. Yum.

After that we made roasted tomatillo sauce. A half-gallon of the stuff. It’s good.  

I rode my Harley to the store to get some milk. You took a bath and got ready for bed. When I got home, you and your mother were playing the “World of Zoo” video game.

And then, finally, it was bedtime. Your mom told you a story. I sang you a lullaby.

Usually when I write you I have some higher purpose. Maybe sometimes I try too hard.

Today, I guess, I just wanted to remind you of what a great day we had.

And tomorrow, I’m guessing, you’ll be even tougher to rouse out of bed.