Friday, April 15, 2011


My son Max is seven years old. He's a normal, average boy in every way, except he's always the tallest in his class. This makes him easy to find, on the playground. In the photo below, you can see the size differential. These boys are all about the same age, but Max is too big to ride in the toy car.

My wife Misa makes lunch for Max every day. She puts a lot of love and design into this work.

Max is happy most of the time; we're lucky that way. He has a big workload. He goes to public school five days a week, then Japanese school on Saturdays. He must do homework for both schools almost every day. 

I do English homework with Max every day in my office / studio. This is often the most difficult time of the day for us, because Max is in no mood for homework. I feel sorry for him, but I must be tough and force him to get it done. Our fights can be quite dramatic, but we haven't missed turning in an assignment in almost two years. 

Max likes to make train tracks and build models out of paper. 

Over his spring break, Max spent more time with me because Misa was sick. We wandered around San Francisco together. As you may know, the city has many hills and a few mountains. We ran across these beautiful mosaic stairs and had to climb them. This was a tough assignment for an old man.

Our reward at the top - a view of city and ocean.

Max and I read through Susan Wise Bauer's Story of the World. When we read about Moses growing up in the house of Pharaoh in Egypt, I asked him, "How did Moses know he wasn't Egyptian?" 

Max thought for a minute, then said, "His pee-pee was cut on the end."

I leaped for joy. You'll do alright, little man.  

Raising a child completely exhausts me. Still, I'm grateful for the experience, and I almost missed it. Before we had Max, I resented parents who went on and on about the commitment a child represents. Now I agree with them. Bringing a child into the world is like putting your last penny on the table. It takes all discretion away. Stop thinking about what you want; you have work to do, Pal. You're not just visiting anymore. 

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