It’s not easy being me.  It’s really not.  I’m not talking about the general laziness, the poor money management, the oft times non existent sense of time and space and consequences.  No.  I’m talking about my mind here.  I don’t know how my poor child has lived with it all these years.  One day years ago I took my son and several of his friends to school.  A popular saying back then came from a popular song.  “Raise the roof” was what they were saying back then.   As the kids exited the ‘77 Monte Carlo that day, I said, “Hey, increase the height of the ceiling!“  Those kids obviously weren’t morning people that day.  

But I fear for my grandchildren.  I think sometimes there may be a bit of a blurred fiction-reality line in the thoughts and actions of their old granddad.  Certainly the ratio is skewed.  

I have three grandchildren.  The two oldest have nicknames.  What I call the oldest was very easy to come up with.  It came naturally.  “Beautiful” is her main nickname.  I also call her “Sis-boom-bah.”  That’s because my dad’s favorite nickname for my sister was simply “Sis-Boom.”  I liked that.  And - my granddaughter became a young cheerleader.  So, “Sis-boom-bah” seemed natural, too.

I was present when the next oldest grand young-in was born.  And I have cared for that child since his diapers were, to him, just pieces of glorified paper towels and plastic that gripped his waist and thighs.  Many a time I heard noises coming from those Pampers.  And just as many times, I’d run my crusty old fingers around the back waist band of those diapers.  About 80% of the time I would find nothing.  Except an exceptional odor.  Like it or not, his nickname is “McGruder.”  That’s short for “Pooter McGruder.”

The youngest of the grandbabies was difficult.  I think I tried to force things a bit.  I did come up with “Seth-Man.”  The child’s name is Seth.  A really pathetic effort on my part, don’t you think?  “Seth-Man.”  Unbelievable.  I have still tried to sort of force that nickname on the poor child.  It just doesn’t work.  I even cringe when I call him that these days.

But the past few times I have been with the child, things have sort of started falling into place.  You do understand, we are dealing with my mind here, right?  So, I’m not sure if “falling into place” with that sweet child’s nickname is a good thing.  Nevertheless.

Seth and his older brother Sy are almost the same age.  Sy is four years old.  Seth will soon be three.  They love each other and look out for one another at almost every turn.  They are as close as two Cadillacs in a one car garage.  At the same time, they are both so very different.  At this point in their lives, Sy is a bit timid, but once he warms up to things, he can charm the dead.  But he is a bit on the more thoughtful and shy side.  Seth is every bit as loving as Sy, but Seth is a bit bolder and more independent.  

When they play together, occasionally things get out of hand a bit.  Hey, they are kids, right?  And even though Seth is younger than Sy, the kid will stand up for himself when older brother pushes the envelope.  And he is a bigger kid than his older brother.  So those times when Seth has had enough and stands up for himself against Sy, he seems to lose all sense of love and compassion towards his older brother and just dives into the fray with all his might and energy.  It’s an admirable trait really, but when I am in charge of watching those two and settling such disagreements, I have come to use the phrase, “Easy Big Fella.”  They both respond well to that, and they laugh and move on with their young lives.  So, I am guessing that “Big Fella” will somehow stick.  Like “Beautiful Sis Boom Bah” and “McGruder.”

But here’s the twisted part, the part where I worry about my skewed fiction-reality ratio.  I really didn’t know where the “Easy Big Fella” thing came from.  I had a sense that it wasn’t original.  But that’s all I had.  Just a sense.  The other night I was watching a re-run of Seinfeld.  George Costanza was explaining to his friends how he had, under the guise of a fraudulent occupation of Marine Biologist just to secure the love and attention of a beautiful woman, walked into the ocean to save a distressed whale.  He began his explanation by saying, “The seas were rough, my friends.”  He then told his friends that the “great fish” was angry or something, and that something was obstructing the whale’s “blow hole.”  When he confronted the angry “fish. “ he boldly exclaimed, “Easy Big Fella!”

So.  My youngest grandchild got his nickname from a George Costanza line.  My apologies to my young friend, Seth.  Constanza is not the most admirable of television characters.  But hey.  At least young Seth and his dad share something very important.  They have both had to deal with the difficult and twisted mind of an old man who loves them all.

Beautiful Sis-Boom-Bah

Big Fella & McGruder

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