The other night, on the way home from the St Nicholas party following Vespers, my 11 year old son said: “Dad, can we ride around the neighborhood and look at all the Christmas lights?”
I was tired. It was late. It was just he and I. How many more times would I ever hear this request …
It was fun. I’m ashamed to admit: My son was cracking on some of the decorations like a sarcastic pro (I resemble that remark).
For instance, he started laughing long before I saw it, saying: “Dad! Look! They’ve even got the Cross on their roof!”
Sure ‘nuf, in bright white lights like a landing strip, there was a huge shape of a cross on one roof. (Of course, Santa, Frosty, and all the other characters were found on the yard beneath.)
When it was all said and done and we were heading toward home, he said: “Hey! Turn here … I want to see Calvin and Hobbes.”
His mom and I had already walked the neighborhood the previous morning and I knew he was going to be disappointed.
I said, “They’re not there.”
He said, “Yes they are — they’re there every year. Turn here.”
You should have seen his disappointment when we approached the yard only to see an empty sleigh, Calvin’s parents with antlers on their heads singing carols, bags of presents and other nutty creatures … but, as yet, no Calvin, no Hobbes.
The time had finally come.
I did what I had to do.
I said, “Son … Calvin and Hobbes aren’t real.”