“Mom, we have to go to Gamestop tonight at midnight,” my son Evan announced last night.
“Midnight?” I responded. “Who goes to Gamestop at midnight?”
“We have to go, Mom. Wii Resort Sports will be there!”
“Well, good for Wii Resort Sports, but we’ll be home, sleeping, like normal people.”
“But MO-OM, we have to go! Wii Resort Sports has FENCING. I want to Fence!” He leapt across the living room, arms flailing left and right in movements suggesting that a specialist should probably be consulted.
Failing to see what outdoor lawn boundaries had to do with video games, I chose to ignore him. This might have worked if he’d been in the next county, but since we were in the same house, Evan tried other tactics.
My attempts at continuing to read were interrupted by a loud “Mom!” and the appearance of his face just inches from mine. Nothing messes with my middle-aged eyesight more than having to focus on a face after just having struggled to focus on book print.
“Evan! I’m sorry, but we cannot go to Gamestop at midnight. We’ll go tomorrow. The game will still be there tomorrow.”
“No it won’t,” he pouted. I could see his lower lip trembling.
“Yes it will.”
“But what if it isn’t?” Oh, he’s good; using the Guilt card is always an excellent choice. Just ask my third grade teacher, Sister Mary Julianne.
“If it isn’t, the store will get more of them and we will get Wii Resort Sports then.”
Clearly, this was the worst possible outcome. He dropped backwards dramatically onto the recliner as if he’d just been shot. Finally, I thought, he’s given up on the midnight-thing. I resumed reading.
After a moment or two, Evan sprang from the chair and ran upstairs. I could hear movement in his room above me.
A few minutes later, he appeared again next to me, strategically blocking my reading light so that I’d give him my full attention.
“Here’s an offer you can’t refuse.” He opened his wallet and pulled out five one-dollar bills. He arranged them into a fan and held them up proudly for me to see. “I’ll give you FIVE DOLLARS if you take me at midnight.”
As tempting as that offer was (where does he get this stuff?), I decided to hold out for ten dollars, or a clean room, whichever came first.
“Evan, I’ll take you tomorrow. I promise. Now go get ready for bed.”
He checked his wallet again. With steely determination, he tried to convince me once more. “OK, I’ll give you eight dollars, but that’s my final offer.”
I thought about telling him that if he threw in a clean room and a dog walk, we’d have a deal, but all of the parenting books say that you can never let them win. Or does that advice pertain to Rottweilers and playing tug-of-war?
I can’t be sure because I’m up early and writing this without coffee. Guess who wants to be at Gamestop when they open?