Used to be that Chris would hand Ethan the phone and he wouldn’t say anything at all.

Walking uptown on Amsterdam Avenue tonight, though, the conversation evolved. Significantly.

“Hi Ethan!”

“Hi Uncle Ben-be-ben!”

Now, even the worst day in the anals of bad days is remedied by “Ben-be-ben.”

“How are you?”


“Are you eating supper with daddy?”

“Daddy put peas on da table!”

Everything’s exciting when you’re two-years-old. How awesome is that?

“Is mommy home yet?”

“Mommy coming hoooome now!”

“Was she on an airplane?”

“High up in the sky!”

“Were you on an airplane? Did you fly high up in the sky to Grandpa and Nana¹s?”

“High up in the sky!”

“I saw a picture and you were on a bike. Did you learn to ride a bike?”

“Yeeeaaaah. I fell down and bump my head. Daddy put ice on it.”

1045 days on earth, and the kid understands cause, affect, and remedy. Genius.

“Ice is good for bumped heads. Is the bump ok now?”

“Bump is all gone!”

“Good! Ethan? Tell mommy and daddy that you miss Uncle Ben-ba-ben, ok?”


“Ethan? Ethan? Hell-ooooo?”

“Hey dude.”

My brother.

“Classic case of a toddler’s short attention span: I put some crackers in front of him. He handed me the phone, and started eating.”

Fair enough.

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