Keepin’ it Real

One night this week, my wife was using the keyboard to let Clay know that he was taking a trip to a nearby state park at camp the next day. His typed response?

“Cool deal.”

It is easy to forget that Clay, who will turn 15 tomorrow, is a teenager. Lately, he’s been making the point on the keyboard.

I was struggling a few weeks back to get him to type with me. He was deliberately typing gibberish, most likely because I wasn’t offering the right support or pressure that he needed. My wife grabbed the keyboard and sat next to him on the bed.

“Do you have any advice for Daddy so he can type with you?”

“Stay real,” he typed. “Keep working at it.”

“Stay real?” Where did that come from? Kids at school or camp, I suppose. This is a kid who somehow taught himself to read (even though his teachers never quite believed it) and is always listening (even though it may not look like it). I shouldn’t be surprised.

Still, I didn’t expect this last week. He was listening to the Broadway cast album of The Producers on his computer, and squealing away. The aide who works with him at home a couple afternoons each week asked, “Why do you like this CD?”

His answer:

“Curse words.”

Teenagers.

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