After a protracted and sometimes heated discussion about next year's course choices, we were down to figuring out how the son was going to fulfill his fine arts course requirement.
Back and forth. Back and forth.
Finally, I pointed at a choice on the form: Pep Band.
He made a horrible noise. The boy has two years of clarinet under his belt and hasn't played since he was sixth grade.
"I will get you a bassoon," I crooned.
"You will be courted by every college with a marching band," I continued.
He made horrible gagging noises.
"Four-year scholarship for the bassoon," I went on lovingly. "The offers will pour in from everywhere."
He buried his face in my shoulder like he used to when he was a toddler.
"I hate you!" he wailed.
And then we both laughed until we quite literally cried.
Go listen to some good music: "Sing Me Spanish Techno" from the album Twin Cinema by The New P*rnnographers. "You know I was saying it with love, right?" he asked me anxiously. About right for a 16-year-old: he hates me with love.