Thursday, May 7, 2009

This Is Not The Time To Drop The Ball

The Boss was mad. She was really, really mad. She yelled unrepeatable phrases. She used words like “tart” and “hussy.” She shouted,”Not my baby! He’s too young!” What riled my normally temperate and well-freckled friend? It seems that a certain blonde haired young lady named Ashley who attends Apathy Middle School decided that General Mayhem is cute. She’d like to get to know him a little better.

The Boss looked at me as if I had done something wrong when I shared the news. “I really don’t want him to talk to girls until he’s 32,”she said.

General Mayhem told me that he thought a girl had a crush on him. This was Monday night in the car on the way to Karate.

“Is she cute?” I asked.

He smiled sheepishly. “Yeah.”

That was a HUGE admission from a young lad who, until Monday, professed that girls had cooties and weren’t worth the time and energy to talk to. I’ve been warning him for years that, that would change, but I did not take the opportunity to tell him that I had told him so.

Maybe now he’ll learn to appreciate deodorant.

He figured that she had a crush on him because she kept sending her friend Judy to ask the General what he thought of Ashley. Because he did not know what to say, his responses were limited to mumbling, “Yeah, she’s okay.” Then Ashley gave him a bag of potato chips at lunch, explaining that she didn’t like them.

“She likes you,” I confirmed. “Did you give her anything?”

“No,” he replied.

“We need to work on your approach,” I told him.

“That’s easier said than done, dad,” he shot back. “You’re good at talking to people.”

It was interesting that he should say that, because that is exactly what I told him he should do. He balked.

“Look, you’re not asking her to marry you,” I explained. “You eat lunch together at the same table with a whole bunch of other kids. Invite her to sit next to you at lunch. Talk about music or movies or classes.”

I am happy to report that it worked. They sat at a table with bunch of kids and they all told stories about embarrassing things that happened to them at school. He said that everyone laughed and had a good time. Score one for the boy. He took a gigantic first step for boys, mustering up the courage to speak to a girl.

The Boss is till struggling with this new development. She walks around the house muttering, “I’m not ready for this.”

I am. It’s happening a little sooner than I expected. I have to admit that I am happy to see that he has a genuine attraction to the opposite sex, as it should be. I’m ready to provide him with something that I did not get when I was his age – Christian guidance. Neither the Boss nor I will allow dating at this point. He’s too young to “go steady.” The boy can learn to be confident, to hold his head high, make eye contact, and use his good nature and sense of humor to talk to girls. It’s a skill. And whether or not we are ready for this – he’s there. This is not the time to drop the ball.


Kathleen said...

Awww...what a great kid!! Glad to hear he worked up the courage!!

Melissa Bower said...

How precious! I just came across your blog while searching for Fort-Leavenworth-related ones. You have a fun writing style, you should think about writing books for young adults.

CrossView said...

I'm with The Boss! ;o)

You may let her know that we moved ours to the middle of the woods with a firm belief that they may date when they're 50...

if they're really good.

Big Doofus said...

About a month ago, a girl pulled a sneak-kiss on my son--age 15. This girl has also asked him to a dance and he's not interested. We know that he likes a girl from church and we're working on arranging something--marriage!!!!

Brownie said...

I have to agree with The Boss and Crossview!

Blondie's practicing the line "you'll have to ask my father."