With Labor Day right around the corner, I find my thoughts turning to a certain someone who entered this world on Labor Day many moons ago. Enough time has passed since that day that said little boy is now the father of a teenager, but when I was a junior in high school, he was the little imp I wrote the following anecdote about.
* * *
The bus pulled up in front of our house, and as I got off, I could hear Patty giggling, and Ben yelling excitedly that the bus was here, but the one I heard most was Danny’s jubilant, “De! De!”
I knew that when I opened the front door, he’d be there to greet me with the same cry as always, “Hi, De!”
Pesky stubborn old rat anyway.
Sure enough as I opened the door, he bounds off the last step and flies into my arms, loaded down with books, and nearly toppling me over. “Hi, De,” is all he says as he gives me a great big hug and kiss.
“Dan, I love you, but I’m not De!” Then I gladly hand him over to the girl behind me.
Why don’t I ever come in the garage door, so Konnie can get attacked?
Danny gives Konnie the identical greeting, but he’s not satisfied. Five minutes later, he wants a drink and can’t find anyone who isn’t busy? So what does he do? Simple, he picks up his cup and trots in the living room, where I’m on the couch reading, and tugging on my pant leg, begs, “De, De, dink, peas.” And he shoves the cup up to me.
This time I get smart. “Konnie, Danny wants you to get him a drink.”
But to no avail. When Konnie tries to get him, and the cup, into the kitchen, he pulls away and, pointing to me, yells, “No, dat De!”
Dag blain brat anyway!
“All right, I’ll get it. But I’m not Konnie!”
This still isn’t the end for today. When Ben comes in my room to tell me Mom wants me to peel potatoes, he’s right behind Ben calling, “De.”
This isn’t her room.
“Just a second, Ben.” I ignore Danny.
All through dinner, he calls everyone by the name he uses for them after someone else says their name.
“Pass the potatoes please, Bonnie.”
“De, De, De.”
“Pass the Kool-Aid please, Bryon.”
“Be, Be, Be.”
“Hand me the beans please, Konnie.”
“De, De, De.”
If I recall correctly, when Ben was Danny’s age, he could tell us apart, he just couldn’t talk. I’m not sure I’m glad Danny can hear.
* * *
J Anyway, Happy birthday, Dan. I love you. And I’m glad you finally learned my name.
Happy writing everyone. J