There isn’t a mother anywhere who doesn’t wonder why her children are all so different from each other. I’m no different. This became very apparent when my middle son, David, and his wife, Wendy, came to visit me on my birthday. We had a much too short but fun visit.
We ate out both evenings they were here which made it easy for me, since this “foodie” loves eating out. We had an assortment of beef dishes at a local steak house, which turned out to be excellent. They serve a baked potato that feeds at least two people! It gave us all something to laugh about when my clown David said he refused to eat anything that was bigger than his head.
The second evening we dined at my favorite Japanese establishment and they raved about everything. I simply couldn’t spend a lot of time showing them around. That duty went to my son Doug who showed them some of Fallon. Wendy is into photography and wanted to see the Stillwater Wildlife Refuse. Unfortunately no birds since everything was dry; however, it wasn’t “dry” at a local hotel where they enjoyed a local favorite drink called “Picon Punch.”
Okay, so they had two of them and told me how much fun they had talking to the owner and the other locals who were also enjoying a few libations. David is the tallest of my boys, pushing six feet and has curly hair and wears a huge, now gray, mustache. Of all of my sons he has the most amusing personality. I remember once, years ago when my husband Van was still with us.
David, Wendy, Van and I were down at an Orange County, Calif. club when David did his Groucho Marx impersonation. Everybody in the place was in hysterics. Way back when David had graduated from high school, with an astonishingly high grade point average, he was hired at an upstart computer company. This was when computers were just beginning to be so important. The company was having problems with a new product that wouldn’t work correctly.
This company tried everything, even sending the darn thing back to England to be tested. Now along came this new “kid” with long, curly hair, wearing a Coors tee shirt, who asked if he could give it a try? David told me they all just looked at each other with that “what the heck” expression and let him try. Half an hour later David came out to tell them he had the computer working.
Remarkably, David accomplished what his company had been working on for six months, a fix thought impossible. Soon afterward, with a haircut and wearing a regular business shirt, David was promoted into engineering. Today, David and Wendy have two girls, both married with a total of six children. Leslie had a boy then a girl,
followed by a set of twins, one of each gender. They call one of their boys “monster.”
I call him “Tarzan” because he got up on the dining room table and swung from the chandelier, which then promptly fell from the ceiling, The “Monster” just wouldn’t answer when spoken to. Finally, it was discovered that the poor little fellow was partially deaf. It’s a little easier now for Leslie, their mom, to handle four little ones under the age of six. Luckily her husband has a very successful career in the banking business.
Leslie’s sister Sarah has two sons. Sarah met her husband Dan at a musical event. He loves his career, and has an important part in music played at Disneyland. The only problem is how many hours Dan works since he’s in such demand. He’s trained to perform three roles, one of which is the lead in the “Mad Hatter” musical. His eventual goal is to get into production and managements.
David and Wendy recently purchased a second home up in the mountains outside Los Angeles. They decided it was time to plan for their upcoming retirement. My plan was to talk about all of my sons, so much for plans. The other four are different and I will embarrass them by talking about them in a later column. In the meantime I do hope you all had a great Fourth.
Aren’t you all glad you’re an American? God bless our troops who keep us safe and do so much for us, and for all of those who have served over the years since 1776.
Edna Van Leuven is a Churchill County writer and columnist. She may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.