“Which store do you want to go to?” I ask Garret. We’re on the hunt for a Halloween costume. It’s Tuesday, and Halloween is on Thursday, but Garret couldn’t decide on a costume so we didn’t get one yet.
“Jared got his at the mall. He’s gonna be a fireman.”
“What do you want to be? Have you decided yet?” I turn onto the road that takes us to the mall. We don’t have a mall in our small town but there’s one that’s not far from the gym we just left.
“Maybe a football player,” he says. “Or a baseball player.”
He’s so obsessed with sports. It’s all he talks about. In order to have conversations with him, I had to have Pearce give me lessons in every sport. My dad taught me about football but that’s it. I didn’t know anything about soccer or baseball or basketball.
“You could be a superhero,” I say.
“I guess.” He doesn’t sound too excited about that. “What was dad when he was a kid?”
“Your dad didn’t dress up for Halloween. Your grandparents didn’t celebrate it.”
“They’re not really into holidays.”
“I love holidays. Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter. Except I don’t like Valentine’s Day. It’s for girls.”
“It’s not just for girls. It’s for everyone. Someday you’ll like a girl and you’ll want to give her a valentine.”
“No way.” I glance at him in the rearview mirror and see him making a face. “I’ll never like a girl enough to give her a valentine.”
“Not now, but you will someday.” It makes me wonder what his future wife will be like and when he’ll meet her. Will he meet her in college? Or maybe he’ll meet her at work, when he’s older.
“I do NOT like Alyssa,” he proclaims. “You need to have a talk with that girl, Mom.” He’s so serious I almost laugh.
“What’s wrong with Alyssa?”
“She wants to be my girlfriend. I told her no but she didn’t listen. She told me she’s gonna tell her whole class I’m her boyfriend.”
“It’s okay, honey. You don’t go to her school. Nobody will know who she’s talking about.”
“I don’t care. I still don’t like her. She wears too much pink and she smells funny.”
“Garret, that’s her perfume.” I’m trying really hard not to laugh.
“Well, it stinks.”