A Son Also Rises

There’s a bit of dialogue in Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises that goes like this:  “How did you go bankrupt?” Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”  That  pretty much describes how I’ve accumulated a bunch of grandchildren.  Just last week, my daughter Annaoj and her husband, Hsoj had a baby boy, Rex.  This brings the total to four grandkids; all in just a little over four years.  This entourage developed as I said, gradually . . . and then suddenly.

Rex is a really cute baby but honestly, I was hoping for a girl.   Had that happened, my grandchildren would have been two boys and two girls. That would have been perfect for the mixed doubles matches I envisioned for a decade or so from now.  Possibly played on a lawn on the estate I see in my future.  I lamented to whomever would listen to me that now I can’t figure out what kind of team I could field with a three boy, one girl configuration.  My friend Retep#2 suggested that I might consider a bowling team.

This was a blow. The vision I had of a Kennedyesque family playing a genteel sport on my compound by the sea was replaced with  a Bunkeresque image at some seedy lanes in Sunnyside, Queens.  No touch football, no croquet, no badminton.  Just bowling and flat screen TVs.  What a let down.

Fortunately for him, Rex shares the same birth date as my mother.  This ensures that I’ll remember his birthday.  It’s almost imagesimpossible to remember the rest of them.  I don’t know how other grandparents do it but wherever possible I use a mnemonic device as a way to keep track.  For example, grandchild #1 was born on May 10th.  This I associate with Woolworth’s five-and-dime stores (5/10), so that one I have covered.  There are no other chain stores with which I can make an association for the birthdays of the other two so I may just pick the mid-point of each year to give them a gift, knowing I can’t be more than six months off.

As you can see, being a grandparent isn’t as uncomplicated as it looks.  Oh I know, I make it look easy . . . but it’s not.  Don’t get me wrong– I’m thrilled that I have a new grandson. It’s just that  I feel I need a little break from all this grandfatherness.  But then again, as I think about it, with a fifth one, I could field a co-ed basketball team.  I’d bet anything that seaside estate could have room for a court.

When I wake up... Tennis Anyone!!?

When I wake up…
Tennis Anyone!!?

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4 Responses to “A Son Also Rises”

  1. Rich Says:

    Congratulations! I realize it’s all tongue in cheek, or whereever, but seriously, your grand daughter might be the best player of all and at least one grandson will possibly (probably) hate tennis. Grand daughter/grandson singles may be loomng.

    • iron(ic)man triathlon Says:

      thanks Rich. sounds like you’re writing me off too soon. grand daughter/grandfather singles is what i’m sticking around for.

  2. Roberta berman Says:

    It a shame that this beautiful child didn’t have his great uncle Joe to show him the ropes

  3. iron(ic)man triathlon Says:

    we all could have used uncle joe to show us the ropes. at least, some of the ropes.

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