Griffyn asked it, with full confidence. The way one asks a question when one already know the answer, and understand the only thing left is to figure out the details.
"We can go see Hotel For Dogs sometimes this weekend, right?"
Lots of different thoughts swirled through my head when she asked. It made me happy she felt comfortable to ask, and I was thrilled to know my 8-year-old enjoys movies, like me.
But I was envious.
During my own childhood, I rarely--maybe, never--considered asking my dad to take me to the movies. I recall wanting to, but can't think of a time that I did. We went as a family to a handful of flicks, but each trip was planned by my mother. A Disney movie here, a drive-in show there; until I was 15, I'd have given anything to go to alone to a movie with my dad. But I never asked. He worked hard, and worked often. And when he wasn't working, he was tired.
The one time I invited him to a movie was to see Billy Crystal's 1991 flick City Slickers. I thought the combination of comedy and a western theme would suite him. I remember he didn't laugh nearly as much as I did. After the movie, he didn't seem interested in talking about the expereince. That made me feel awkward, and sort of embarrassed. I love to talk about movies after I watch them with someone.
"Sure," I replied to Griffyn. "I'm glad you asked, it's been too long since we went to the movies together."
The popcorn was stale and the movie was average. But what a great time we had.