Schooled in Incongruity

IMG_0495To offer my oldest son one of his first tastes of independence, not to mention sneaking in a math lesson while I’m at it, I have let him, for the last several months, go into a local restaurant by himself to pay for and pick up our occasional (okay, weekly) takeout.  And by “by himself,” please know (1) it’s a family-owned restaurant right around the corner from our home and one we’ve frequented probably a hundred times; (2) I park–most likely illegally– right in front of the door so he does not need to walk across the parking lot; and (3) I can see him the entire time.  I put the food under his name–Oscar–and he relishes this moment when he is “on his own,” negotiating business, feeling big.  He walks proudly to the car carrying our dinner and counting and formulating a plan to keep the change.

But tonight he exited with an extra spring in his step.

“Mom, mom, guess what?”


“Some man in the restaurant asked me when I walked in if I was stopping in tonight for a beer!”

“He said WHAT?”

“He asked if I was having a beer!  Isn’t that funny?”

“Um . . . no, it’s not funny.   You are eight years old.”

“Almost nine.”

“You are a child!  It’s not funny, Oscar.”

“Oh, but it is.  And do you know why?”

“Why, Oscar?”

“Because the man was at least 90 years old.  If he was a young guy, it would definitely be inappropriate.  But because he was, you know, excuse me, elderly, well, it shows his wit, wouldn’t you say?”

Wouldn’t I say?

What can I say?


11 thoughts on “Schooled in Incongruity

  1. Today he bounded out of school hold three books in his hands, “I have three books!!!”
    “Would you like to store them in the ‘trunk’?”
    “No, thanks.”
    So he “handled” them all the way home.
    His generation isn’t so different as preceding generations even with more temptations.


  2. Sam – Sometimes I think Oscar shows you the way.  Not everyone has a motive, relax!  Oscar has a great deal of common sense and intuitiveness.  As your piece stated, all precautions were in place and you and yours are obviously known at this establishment.  Look at his parents…Kathi

  3. I love when these little boys use vocabulary that takes me by surprise. My son said to me the other day…”mom that’s sarcasm”!! Funny thing…he was right!

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