Cash and Dad's First Year and Three Quarters
Tight knit groups develop a culture and language all their own. Gaining admission can be awkward at best, dangerous at worst, and might involve streaking across a quad or running in combat boots across a beach. Of course, once you are in the club, its entertaining watching others struggle to join! This is true of my high school cliques, my venture capital partnership, and, yes, our ragged little family.
You can tell a lot about a person by his or her composure during the courting (or pledging) period. In your case, you have not waited for an invitation. The price of admission was birth, but your impact is that of a mob GodFather. Imagine a stocky two footer with a protruding belly entering a room with boastful gesticulations and attaboy chatter. From thirty feet, you are right in with the gang!
The thing is, you are pointing at god knows what, taking gibberish. When Rachel, Luke and I laugh, you laugh, though you don't understand a word! You are all clothes, no emperor!
Then comes the mistake. The mistake arrives in many forms, but often it is a reasonable action, with the wrong object -- trying to write with grandpa's red licorice. Or it could be a reasonable object, but the wrong action -- offering a glass of juice for Churchill to drink. You are downright hilarious!
One of my friends, Jimmy Treybig, founder of Tandem Computing, once said that an organization should allow its culture to influence and be influenced by new people. You have brought a fearlessness to our family that I am proud of. You also tie us together. You won't let anyone leave your sight without insisting on a farewell high five, or "Five!" Interestingly, you require symmetry in this: you have to "five" both hands in sequence!
Cash, you have been dealt a gem trait in life: charm. It will forever lower the barrier into many a hardened troupe.
Now that you've woven yourself into the family unit, we can't seem to keep you around. Given any opening, you make a mad dash for freedom. This week, Rachel took you and Luke to a bathroom within a Starbucks off Wisconsin Avenue. While Rachel was engaged keeping Luke's butt on the potty, you shot out the bathroom door, past an astonished coffee que, out the Starbucks entrance, and down the sidewalk towards your favorite toy store. Rachel and Luke (with his pants around his ankles) made a motley crew trying to chase you down. Once again, no fear!
In one small victory this quarter, we have managed to graduate from purely "Nos" to our first "Yes!" on January 30th, 2010. You agreed to a lollipop.