May 25, 2007

Two bagger

Emmett did a good job yesterday evening getting ready for his field trip today. I didn't see this directly, because I went to bed before he and Ethan and Janet did, but there was evidence when I came down this morning: I found Emmett's trip shirt on the kitchen table and his lunch all packed in the fridge, except for a small bag of chips on the counter.

On the counter, there was also a matching bag of chips that I figured was for Ethan. Every parent of multiple kids knows the importance of being equitable. This wanes only a little when kids enter double digits in age, so I assumed that Janet just snagged the second bag for Ethan when she got Emmett's.

But no. When Emmett was gathering up his stuff for us to meet the trip bus at 5:45, he grabbed both bags of chips.

"Both bags?" I said.

"Well, there are two bus rides," Emmett said. "There and back."

I rolled my eyes but let it go. Once in a while, ya gotta let a kid kick back and overeat.

Still ... Emmett, Ya Goof!

May 23, 2007

1002 ways to goof up

541. Delete a voice mail message by accident.
540. Drop your cell phone into the toilet.

May 22, 2007

Misjordin' words during the blake-off

We just experienced a strange confluence of events.

We're watching a recording of the American Idol finale. I'm fighting off contenders for use of the laptop.

Blake Lewis was launching into his first song.

Janet asked me to check the online calendar that we use, at; she was afraid that she'd missed Ethan's latest orthodontist appointment. But I found it in the square for May 29.

Just then, Blake reached his big finish.

"Nope, next Tuesday," I said, to Janet (referring to the appointment).

"There is no next Tuesday," Ethan said.

Everyone turned to Ethan and said: "Huh?" He was canceling next Tuesday?

Ethan returned a quizzical look, then understanding dawned. He thought that my "Nope, next Tuesday" meant that I was dissing Blake's performance and suggesting he might do better next week.

Ethan, Ya Goof!

May 21, 2007

Most Valuable Goof

Here's Emmett with the game ball he received in his last Little League game. He went 3-for-4 with two singles and a double.

This was after not laying a bat on a ball through the first five games. Hitting is not (usually) his strength. He has a way of watching strikes go by.

Before the previous game, I advised Emmett to swing at the first three pitches in each at-bat. Not everyone agrees with that piece of coaching, but my observation is that Emmett used up so much time deciding whether to swing that he didn't have enough time left to actually swing.

Emmett didn't like the advice during the last game and didn't follow it. I reiterated it during this game by holding up three fingers (for the first three pitches) each time I caught his attention from the stands.

"Emmett!" I called out as I approached the field ... as I took my seat ... as he took throws in the outfield ... as he was on deck. He'd look up. I'd raise the three fingers. He'd give a little smile, but not an obedient smile.

He approached the plate. Swung. Missed. But still ... one pitch, one swing. Maybe he was going to, yes, play ball with my approach this time?

Second pitch. Swing. Solid hit!! It scooted past second base! Emmett was so stunned that he almost forgot to run. I called his name when he was standing on first. I held up the three fingers and got that smile from him. Emmett eventually made it to third, and was the first runner in on a grand slam by Hannah Mercer. (Note: Hannah was definitely a candidate for the game ball, too ... but let's just say that she has a superior chance of getting another one. She's a sweet kid who can see the big picture.)

Next time Emmett was up, I showed him the three fingers again. He swung on the first pitch again and got a double.

"There's half the cycle right there!" I said to Don Mercer, Hannah's dad. He laughed. When Emmett took the outfield again, I went to the fence and held my arm over, extending the three fingers. Emmett met them with three fingers.

I held up the fingers again when Emmett went to the plate again. He struck out, but it was with two fouls and many swings.

I hoisted the three fingers again for Emmett to see when he took the plate the fourth time. And he got another other single. And the game ball.

I hugged him when he showed it to me. "Nice job!" I said.

And get this. He said ...

"You know, it really pays to listen to the coach."

"The coach? The coach??!" What about the Three Fingers?!

"Well, the Coach said to watch the rotation of the ball."

"The rotation of the--?"

Emmett, you're a goof! (And I'm proud of ya!)

May 9, 2007

You could say he staged his own disappearance

Yesterday, all of us were primed to go to the Junior High Spring Orchestra Concert and hear Ethan play his cello. That includes Ethan's grandmother, Leah, and great-aunt, Lois. And okay, it leaves out Emmett, who needless to say is a huge Ethan supporter ... but he had a Little League game at the same time.

Until Ethan told us that he mixed up the dates and his concert isn't until next Tuesday.

Janet tried to reach her mother and Lois to tell them the news, but she couldn't. We caught up with them when they ambled over to the Little League Field after the concert.

"It was a nice show," Leah said, "but we never did see Ethan!"

Naturally, I turned to him and said: "Ya Goof!"

May 8, 2007

Analysis of a NON-goof

Here's one for the advanced curriculum ... A circumstance that MADE me look like a goof when I wasn't. Honest!

  • The cafeteria at work
  • The hallway outside the cafeteria

  • Myself
  • A co-worker, Angie
  • A co-worker, Jim

Scene 1
I was leaving the cafeteria as Angie entered. We work in the same building but different areas. We exchanged greetings.

Scene 2
A ways down the hallway, I remembered something that I needed from the cafeteria, so I turned around and went back.

Scene 3
I met Angie coming out of the cafeteria, followed by another co-worker, Jim, who works in yet another area different from mine or Angie's. I greeted Jim, but since I had just seen Angie, I couldn't very well greet her again, so I simply passed her by. Jim may have wondered why I was ignoring her.

But see? I was innocent!

Keith, Ya Non-Goof!