Our beloved Brew.

Our beloved Brew.
R.I.P. Big guy.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Taken to the mat for the last time

The other night, after a tiring day, I found myself sitting in front of the TV in my bedroom. My son came in and plopped on the bed. He almost immediately began pleading with me to give him a back massage, since he'd spent most of the afternoon in weight training for his high school soccer team.

I'm one of those people who loves getting, but never giving massages. But he knows if he begs long enough I'll usually relent. Reluctantly, and somewhat resentfully, I approached the bed.

Instead of the relaxing massage he anticipated I launched into a version of bed wrestling we used to call "Doggie/Kittie Fight." Throughout his and his sister's lives we've had a family tradition of piling on the bed and roughhousing. It usually starts when one team or the other (boys are the doggies, girls are the kitties) screams "Doggie/Kittie Fight" at the top of their lungs to signal a challenge. Everyone in the house drops what they're doing and piles on top of one another on the bed.

Sometimes the purpose of the game is for one team to "pin" the other. Sometimes, we merely see who can sprawl and bounce on the other until they "tap out." It always involves a lot rolling around, climbing over each other, and "house rules." As an example, once a "kitty" can break free and voluntarily leaves the bed, they cannot be dragged back. Usually, leaving the bed was merely a ruse to circle around and attack from a more advantageous point. You get the idea.

It has been sometime since we did this, and as you can imagine, my eighteen year old daughter no longer has any interest whatsoever in this type of behavior. Mom is now considerably shorter and easily overpowered by our fifteen year-old son. Once and a while over recent years, my son and I would do a little "Mano-e-Mano" wrestling on the bed, but even that seemed to been outgrown and relegated alongside Doggie/Kittie fights to the parental fond memory bin.

But to my surprise, there was still some old fight left in the doggies.

When the dust settled, the real dogs in our house had both fled the room in panic and were now in highly agitated states in the family room, the bedding was stripped clear. both of us were winded, complaining of various aches and pains inflicted by the other, fully exhausted and completely overjoyed and relieved that were able to go at it full tilt and not seriously hurt one another.

It wasn't until the next morning that it dawned on me that for a variety of reasons, not the least of which is my son has suddenly grown bigger and stronger than me, that this was very likely the last time we would be able to go at this way without one of us (me) needing medical attention. The Top Dog is dead. Long live the top dog. Long live Doggie/Kittie fights.