Saturday, December 16, 2006

Confession

I am reading a children's book my wife thought I might like, Friday's Tunnel by John Verney. It came out in 1959, and is that sort of book in which boring old Daddy turns out to be a spy, or a famous adventurer. I suppose that is a good deal better than today, when secrets about boring old Dad turn out to be that he always wanted to be Queen of the May, and he's moving out tonight.

My problem with books of this premise is that it is boring old Dad who is writing them, from the perspective of his admiring children. This Walter Mitty-ish exposure seems perilously close to admitting what a schlemiel you really are. Have some pride, man, and keep your heroic fantasies secret like the rest of us.

So it is with great annoyance that I confess to my children that Daddy is not secretly a spy or world adventurer. I might have made a good codebreaker in the days before computers, and suppose I could have passed as any number of northern European nationalities if I had been remotely good at languages.

I do promise you, however, that if I ever develop the power of time travel or invisibility that spying is exactly is exactly what I will take up, and will make every effort to tell you on my deathbed. But don't tell your mother, because she would worry.

3 comments:

Jonathan Wyman said...

Excuse me, but if you develop invisibility, you have to use it to embarrass world dictators. We decided on that when I was in middle school, and I'm holding you to it.

Dubbahdee said...

As has already been recently established in a certain public forum to which you are privy, I actually AM a superhero. What has not been revealed is my secret identity.
Someday I will publish my memoir. "My Life as a Superhero: How a Boring Old Dad went Mitty without turning Queen of May." Or "How I Stopped Worrying and Learned to Love their Mom."

Wyman said...

We know this post is just part of your cover. I'm expecting to inherit the family covert ops business upon your retirement. I'm sure you're grooming me right now.