Friday, November 26, 2010


I was running Grover at the church yesterday morning when our cigar chomping neighbor approached. We had that “how quickly can we end this conversation” conversation when, for lack of really anything else to day, I blurted, “It’s Luca’s birthday today.”

He looked at me like I was nuts. “It hasn’t been a year yet,” he matter of factly said and then blew smoke in my face. How on earth did this beautiful child get to be a year old? It’s as if he didn’t want to bother us with the difficulties of a newborn and just leapt to being one.

Luca woke up yesterday, like all Hamanns on their birthday, grouchy and pissy. I felt a tiny pang of joy because he was actually being kind of a jerk. I feel like he needs to jerk it up more.

I proudly exclaimed this to Diana. She said, “Have you fed him?” Oh yeah. Food. After he ate he went back to his usual good natured self. Pushing cars and saying, “Ca.”

Eventually, the obligations of Thanksgiving took over and I busied myself with making my world famous stuffing. Or rather, my co-opted from my great friend Patrick’s world famous stuffing-stuffing. Diana tried to keep us on point by making birthday cupcakes and shouting, “It’s your birthday!” every five minutes.

We carted the family to the in-laws for dinner and presents.

Here’s what I love about Luca. He’s a boy. Through and through. Which means buying him presents is incredibly easy. Cars. Cars cars cars. If it has wheels, he’ll play with it.

So we gave him a fire truck (and a ball toy which he ignored) and then we didn’t see him again for 2 hours. Why would he want to disturb our Thanksgiving meal? We tried to give him some mushed up turkey and potatoes, but he wanted to get back to his truck.

Luca made it through the ceremonial First birthday cake in typical Luca style. He carefully pushed a finger into the icing and then said, “Ca.” No matter how we tried to get him to smear the contents on himself, he refused. That would be too much trouble.

So happy birthday, Luca. I love you. I love your big, blue eyes. I love your crooked smile. I love your monkey chatter. I love your daredevil streak. I love your hatred of fuzzy clothes. I love your chuck roast feet. I love your insistence on playing in Grover’s food. I love your complete lack of need of attention. I love your ticklish belly. I love your vaguely Russian gangster appearance.

I love you, son.


Mindy and Max said...

That was amazing. Doesn't it feel sometimes that the love you feel for him can't get any larger, stronger? Is there a ceiling? Happy Bday, Luca. May the Force be with you.

Phil Flickinger said...

Rick, the line "I love your vaguely Russian gangster appearance" might be the best one you ever wrote. Which I mean as a compliment, but kind of comes out as an insult since you write lines for a living. Best of luck with the big move!