Law #1 of the “Perfect Daddy Handbook” goes something like this:
“Thou shalt never--under pain of death
or duress of other kinds--spoil they
child; lest the error of thy way
returns to haunt you.”
Well, thou mayest never have done such a thing--but I have. So did Will on that day three-year-old Wesley bugged him 47 times for a Coke.
“I was painting the bedroom when I heard the refrigerator door open,” Will told me in a recent recounting of the story. “I knew something was up when I saw Wes coming down the hallway with his hands behind his back. He had deliberately disobeyed me, Joe. Believe me, he knew he was history when he saw the look in my eyes. He knew I was dead serious,” Will assured me.
“And?” I asked.
“Well, the little guy thought fast,” said Will. “He pulled that bottle of Coke from behind his back and said, ‘Happy Birthday, Daddy!’ And my birthday was still a month away.”
“You didn’t let him get by with it, did you?” I asked.
“Of course not,” Will declared. “I took that Coke and started chugging, just to teach him a lesson. But then--”
“Well, then he sorta gave me that cute grin of his and he said, ‘It’s my Birthday, too.’”
“So?” I asked.
“So I gave him the last sip,” said Will.
So much for Law #1.