My dad came over for dinner the other night. My mom is visiting friends out of town, and he likes to just spend some time with them. I think he may have regretted it after that night’s dinner. It did start off rather innocently, though.
Grandpa, Little Miss looked at him with worship in her eyes, Mommy told me that you were in the Army when you were in the war. And you had a gun then, too!
Yes, Little Miss. I was in the Army during the war, he nodded at her.
She paused for a moment, squinting at him – wheels visibly turning. That was a long time ago, wasn’t it? I don’t think they let you in the Army if you have wrinkles. Did you have wrinkles when you were in the Army, Grandpa?
As he stifled a snort, my dad agreed that yes, it was a long time ago, and yes, he was younger then with no wrinkles.
And Grandpa, when you were in the Army, you didn’t have grey hair, right? And you had all your hair? Because they don’t let people with grey hair into the Army either, I don’t think.
My dad gave up at that point, me along with him. We tried to keep it to small, subtle chortles, but we failed miserably.
Mister Man had been observing the conversation and thinking, as well. Not to be outdone:
Grandpa, sometimes you lie to me, he asserted, looking serious.
What? No, I don’t lie to you, Kiddo! my dad looked taken aback.
You do, Grandpa, you do! You told me that you get grey hair because of things I do to scare you. That’s not true. You have grey hair just because you’re really old! And no amount of reasoning could convince him otherwise.
My poor dad.