They say girls can be very picky about food, but I don't think they have anything on David there. He's better now, but for years he regarded any new food -- strawberries, bread pudding and cherries included -- as lurking poison. When he was about 9, we were out for a day trip and searching for a lunch spot. We pulled into the parking lot of a fairly promising-looking restaurant. David looked terribly dubious. We tried to reassure him, but he narrowed his eyes. "What if all they have is slushy bean casserole surprise?" His father didn't skip a beat. "Then we'll eat it and drive home with the windows open."
Boys and boyishness were out of fashion for a couple of decades, but that is changing. "The Dangerous Book for Boys" -- a celebration of all things mechanical, natural and adventurous -- is flying off the shelves. (I reviewed it in the last issue of National Review.) And as my little balls of energy have matured into rangy adolescents with deepening voices and facial hair, who play the trumpet and the bass clarinet, who can do a knife dive into the pool, who amuse each other and their father, and who continue to surprise and delight their mother, I must say, I don't really like to shop anyway.