While I have Irish roots my family is not one of those that touts our heritage like that. Dad never wore a "Kiss Me, I'm Irish" t-shirt and Mom never yelled "Ye're dead to me" when I told her she'd had too much to drink at a wedding (as Mom may read this [a shock], I will also add that I never knew her to drink anything more than a sip of red wine at a friend's one Thanksgiving who had proclaimed that he'd made it himself in his basement from grapes grown in the backyard - which I never actually believed). So, when I was told I should blog on a St Patrick's day theme I couldn't think of much to say and I knew that expounding on family traditions (mom used to dye canned pears green with food coloring) would do little more than alienate me from the family.
About 10 years ago I was thrilled to become a Godfather. When Charlie Brown and Florence were having their first little boy they asked if I would "do the honors" - YEA!!!
So, every couple months we get together on a Saturday night and play games, eat calzone and share horror stories about our jobs. They have three kids now and while I love them all, none compare with my Ky-bot. He's a scream and adores his godfather (poor deceived child).
One Saturday night, few years back we got up to their place well before dinner and sat around chatting... and chatting... and chatting... and Ky-bot wanted something to eat. They shared the usual "spoiling dinner" conversation and agreed that a small bowl of cereal wouldn't spoil dinner - especially eaten dry... and since there was less than a small portion it was dumped into a bowl and handed to him.
As I stepped into the kitchen, Lucky and his empty box were dropped into the trash.
"Ooo... I love 'Lucky Charms'"
"Me too..." he answered me, smiling that 6 year old toothless grin.
His mother reminded him that nice boys share.
"You can have some if you want."
"Ok" said Dracula when the young girl asked him to look at the mole on her neck.
It was instinct. I was finished before I even knew I'd done it.
I picked through the cereal and removed all of the marshmallow bits.
Into my mouth they went and they were gone... and I enjoyed them.
He stood there staring into his bowl, digging around those poor excuses for nutrition that they leave in the cereal for mothers who can't say "No"; hoping to find just one piece of the promised hearts, stars or rainbows... His godfather could have left the head of his prized horse in his bed and gotten a kinder look. He looked up at me like I'd waltzed into his wedding wearing my own tuxedo and married his bride while he stepped into the men's room for a second.
He walked over to his mom who looked at me and half-laughed,
"Did you eat all the marshmallows?"
...I had, what could I say? What could I do? All those years of grabbing for the mac and cheese before it started down the table and getting to the cold cuts first before there was nothing left but olive loaf had trained me for this very moment. This is what I had become, this is the great man and fine example into which I had evolved.
"Did I?" such a fibber...
He held the bowl up to me, a poor orphan in a workhouse whose gruel did not suffice...
I looked down at the beige, odd shaped, slightly sugar coated oat pieces and repeated those words that I had learned at a very young age...
"Those are good, too..."
...yeah, he didn't believe it either...