Wednesday, February 9, 2011

On Friday, My Son will be America.

A few days ago, my husband tells me that he got mismatched pants and a suit jacket for my son's Model UN presentation.

"Does it scream My Dad is the primary caregiver?"

"He looks solid."

Last night I come home and my son is still up. He reaches out to shake my hand. "America," he says, "nice to meet you."

Last year he was France. He decided to do no research, but just stare at all the other countries with contempt. I don't think he scored well. But this year, I believe he's thinking he doesn't have to do much research because he is an American after all. He doesn't even have to pretend to hold other people in contempt. It's all good.

I tell him he looks great.

He says, "Yeah, well, I have to keep the jacket buttoned because the pants are too tight and so I have to leave them unbuttoned, but no one will know because I'm a businessman sitting at a table. I don't even need to wear pants at all."

I say, "You're not a businessman. You're America."

He reaches out to shake my hand again. "America," he says, "nice to meet you." Then he shows me his tie, which is too long in the back, but they can fix that. And he shows me that he only has one of his Dad's belts, which is too loose and doesn't hide the unbuttoned pants, but they're going to get one.

"You look good," I say.

He whispers, "I know."

"But I think you do need pants, businessman or America, either way."

"Pants," he says. "Check."

And that, for today at least, is my contribution to the nation's political and possibly economic future.

And you know what? I'm probably wrong. By the time, my son grows up to be either a businessman or America or a professional holding-people-in-contempt-er or professional French impostor -- whatever he so chooses to be -- pants may no longer be necessary.