I remember being a kid and running into my mum and dad's room and waking them up. "Can you get me a glass of water?" my dad asked. So gladly, my sister and I went traipsing off to the kitchen and returned with a glass. "No," he said, " you have to let the tap run a bit longer than that. See those little bits? It's because the water sat in the pipes overnight. You have get all that 'pipe water' out and wait until the fresh water comes." So my sister and I went off and let the water run for a few minutes more and returned with another glass. "Not quite yet," he said. "Try a few minutes more."
To this day, I actually believed that there was such a thing as old "pipe water" that you had to flush out before getting to the good "drinking water". I try to wash some dishes first thing in the morning to use up that no-good water. I always let the water run a bit before taking a glass. But it was only this morning, as I tried to convince the boy that I *did* want to play with him (at 5:15 in the morning) but that in order to play we needed his special red car, that I realized I had been duped oh-those-many-years ago. As my boy ran off in search of his red car, I hoped that it would buy me at least another few minutes. Then it struck me that my quest for "fresh water" was little more than my dad's equivalent of a snooze button for us.
It's quite a revelation. I have probably wasted tens of thousands of gallons of fresh water in my lifetime because my dad wanted five more minutes of sleep. And I wonder what things I may have said (or will say) which will have such an effect on the way the boys live their lives. I wonder if Carol teaching him to yell "Go, Go Suckah!" in the van is going to lead to something unpredictable in the future. I wonder if the fact that every time I say "fresh", the boy responds with "funky fresh", will have some weird connotation later on in life.
Oh. Why did the boy come in at 5:15 today instead of his usual 6:15? Apparently, babies and toddlers don't know about Daylight Savings Time either.