This is what happens when the fates conspire to give you funny, talented and engaging kids despite all your efforts to screw them up. You find yourself at the edge of the room, smiling benignly when people come up and act like just because your offspring are cool, you must be too.
Just between you and me: It doesn’t work like that — as Jessie’s Lexington friends discovered. But I’m happy to bask in reflected glory, and take credit where none is due. This book could make Jessie moderately famous. While the writer in me struggles with a minor twinge of envy now and then, the dad in me is just as pleased as punch. At this point I’m hoping she’ll become just famous enough to buy me a new car.
Kidding. The Subaru’s running fine. And realistically, it’ll probably take a couple more books and an appearance on Oprah before Jessie gets into major car-buying mode. In the meantime, a dad can be proud of his kids, and dispense cheap advice about where to go from here. (Tip One: No reality shows. Ever.) When you’re a parent, you can never stop acting like one. Even after your kids have proven themselves immune to your wisdom.
I have three kids. We tried to raise them all the same, but each one is unique. The thing I’m most proud of is that each is smarter and funnier and braver than I am, which are my main criteria for evaluating people. Beyond that, the one trait they most have in common is that they’re all pretty good writers. I’m not sure how a love of words and a way with them can be inherited, but that’s my story. And I’m sticking to it.