Funky White Boys

I wrote the other day about valuing the beautiful no during Lent. Yesterday morning I received numerous, repeated no's from my son: No, Dad, I'm not going to church. This went on for about a half hour. I gave him the two minute warning: Get dressed; we're going as a family. I respect your desire not to go, but you have no choice. If you've not yet had moments like that with your children, I believe you will, just wait. If you reply with a beautiful no that your kids just don't do that kinda stuff, then I bow before you, o great parenter of spiritual champions, and beg that you pray for the rest of us mere mortals. That last sentence is dripping, I tell you the truth dripping with sarcasm.

Back at the ranch, following church, he came in my bedroom: Dad, I'm sorry I was in a funk this morning. I just was. I gave him a hug, brushed his mane back from his eyes: We all get funky sometimes, white boy.

Later that afternoon, I told him I was going for a run and asked if he wanted to ride along on his bike. A beautiful yes. As we donned our wicking clothing and such, he said Dad, you should get some longer shorts; I can see too much of your legs. Obviously the grand sweep of my quadriceps was overwhelming to him. What, my muscles too big for you, white boy? My son chuckled, I tell you the truth chuckled in my face: Yeah, I'm really envious, Dad. I was self-conscious the entire run.

He rode ahead of me, stayed where I could see him. I huffed along behind on bird-legs, praying for him each step of the trail. I prayed for him, for his mom and sisters, for his girlfriend, for him again, shucks, even prayed for me; it got quite rhythmic. He only had to stop a couple of times, such was the distance between us. Thanks for stopping for the old man. He would just grin: sure.

The evening concluded with my twelve year old white boy in my lap, I tell you the truth my lap watching The Amazing Race. I made some editorial comments along the way, as only a skinny-legged man can truly do, and he laughed aloud. Inside, I felt the beautiful yes. One of the male contestants in the race so amazing was crying, having made some poor decisions. I spoke to the screen: Hey, get a Kleenex and some backbone, and get back in the race. More laughter from this boy-man in my lap.

And I thought yep, we all make poor decisions, get funky on ourselves and those around us; even get teary. It's best to wipe our eyes, ask for forgiveness, and cowboy up 'cause the race is still on. And we're not finished yet.

I may possibly look into purchasing some longer shorts as it looks like I've still got a lot of running ahead of me. The beautiful maybe.


  1. We are SOOO there and not even twelve. No champions of parenting here. We're sucking wind.

    Thanks for the reminder that it can all turn on a dime and we're not alone.

    And thanks for getting the longer shorts.

  2. Anonymous7:31 AM

    Wow. I really like that white boy. And he's cute, too, if that birthday piccha is any indicator.

    I say wear the shorts that keep you riding, as long as you're wearing them, I'm okay with the length of the legs.

    Enjoy the journey tomorrow. Hug the ragamuffin papa for me.

  3. Why do I do this?

    Dancin' and singin' and movin' to the groovin'
    And just when it hit me somebody turned around and shouted
    Play that funky music white boy
    Play that funky music right
    Play that funky music white boy
    Lay down that boogie and play that funky music till you die
    Till you die , oh till you die

    I, like CPQ, am a wind-sucking parent. And like you I am a fan, and it appears teacher of sarcasm.

    But at least I'll have a groovin' song in my head as we head to school.

  4. Are you stinkin' kidding!? This was soo funny! I am reminded of my father in law's too short shirt on a rafting trip when his sons (both adults at the time too --'bout refused to get in the boat with him b/c of it!)

    I think it speaks volumes to your and Mer's parenting that he came back the way he did and apologized and ended up spending some quality time with his Daddy-O...

    Thanks for a making me laugh and hold my boy a little tighter this mornin'!

  5. "I respect your desire not to go, but you have no choice."

    We already play out those scene's in our household. I am learning (as clearly you have) that they need to have that bit of respect and not simply the "no" or "because I said so..." (yes, mere mortal here; those words have actually escaped my lips a time or two...)

    Also loved this comment: "We all get funky sometimes, white boy."

    Aint that the truth!