Sunday, August 5, 2007

Speaking Truth to Power

Today was a day planned by MKs mother. First we went to the Gay Pride parade (MK's mom is totally into parades, while MK and I are lukewarm towards them) then we walked across town to a particular Japanese restaurant that we adults love but, once again, MK is not too hot on. Basically, MK was getting dragged around by his parents and it wasn't much fun for him.

On the way to the Japanese restaurant, MK got it into his head that we should go to Denny's. I hate Denny's and, while we are willing to take MK there as a special treat from time to time, we weren't going to give up on our planned lunch and switch to Denny's, no matter much MK insisted. To tell the truth, I though he was being uncharacteristically unreasonable, especially when we got to the Japanese restaurant and he started to cry. So I asked, him, "Why on earth are you making such a big deal about the idea of going to Denny's that you just thought up a few minutes ago?"

Then he laid it on the line. "I feel less powerful than you," he said. Wow. Now that's plain talking. That's someone who is twelve years old and starting to come into their own.

It took quite a bit of discussion before we hit on the compromise. It was MK's idea. We adults ate our Japanese lunch. Then we all walked down to Denny's where we dropped MK off to order and eat lunch on his own while the grown ups got some coffee nearby. When we came back to take care of the bill (we were going to let him do that too, but the idea of working out the tip got him a bit flustered) we found a very happy camper, who now felt at least as powerful as everybody else.

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