My eleven-year-old son goes to school with twins, Zach and Max. They fear me.
I’m not sure when the tradition started, but when I see them, I chase them, as though I’m going to beat them up. I don’t know why they think that. Perhaps it was due to the few times I caught them and beat them up. I’ve pushed them down, thrown them into the mud, sat on top of them and pulled their hair.
Now before you judge me because I weigh three times what they do, consider this: There are two of them.
Consider this as well: I give them immunity if they are wearing a t-shirt that bears the name of my alma mater, the University of California. They now each have several.
Last week, they attended a basketball camp with my son at a local high school. Each was wearing a Cal shirt. I indicated my satisfaction by uttering our school motto: “Go Bears.”
The next day, only Max was wearing a Cal shirt. Life-risking Zach was not. So as they were both walking to their mom’s car, I went after Zach.
I chased him all over the campus of the high school. He kept yelling, “My mom forgot to wash it. My mom forgot to wash it.”
Sadly, the kid could run. Fast. I could not catch him.
So Zach returned to his mom’s car. He sat down in the front passenger’s seat, next to his mom. His brother Max was in the back seat.
And so was I, crouching down on the floor.
I leaped up and over the seat.
Zach screamed and popped out of his seat like he had been electrocuted. He popped up so high that the momentum carried him right out the open passenger door. Due to my cat-like reflexes, I managed to catch his head before it hit the sidewalk, but I had to hop over the front seat to do it. Both of us went tumbling onto the curb and down into the gutter.
Laying on Zach in the gutter, I noticed the boys’ basketball coach standing on the sidewalk.
He seemed displeased.
I’m not sure why he was displeased. Sure, a 41-year-old man was crumpled up in the gutter on top of one his star basketball players, who had just screamed at the top of his lungs because that same man had leaped onto his head from the back seat of his mom’s car. But these things happen.
I haven’t seen Zach and Max since, but I hear Zach fears cars.
And I hear he wears his Cal shirt every day.