It is disturbing when you first discover your children are smarter than you are. I don’t know when the realization fully hit me, but one event stands out.
When the boys were about seven and five, we were playing together in the back yard when Becky called us in for dinner. We headed to the bathroom to wash up, and Glenn, then about five, came up behind me and said, “Boo!”
“Did I scare you Daddy?”
“Well I knew you were right behind me.”
“But I wasn’t right behind you.”
“Well, I knew you were following me.”
“But I wasn’t following you.”
By this time we were in the bathroom. He was standing on a stool in front of me and we were both washing our hands. I was watching his face in the mirror.
“Look,” I said, “In order to scare someone you have to surprise them. I know you were somewhere near and I wasn’t surprised therefore I wasn’t scared. Now I’m not going to argue with you.”
“Yes you are.”
“No! I’m not!”
I’ll never forget the look of triumph on his face.