Sunday, February 05, 2006

Grand Central Station 2

This morning, we got breakfast into everybody and got The Wife, "Charlie", "Josie" and myself to church. Almost on time, even. We sang, we prayed, we got preached at, we got just a little more right with Jesus, and we took communion. All was good. I can tell I'm becoming part of this community now because I know maybe half the people at church by name and many of them stop to shake hands and chat a bit when they see me.

Due to my newfound fascination with the guitar, I also have a new appreciation for the guy on the worship team who plays guitar with a missing finger. Wow.

In the program, it said the youth group would not be having its usual Sunday-night gathering. To my suprise, "Josie" was disappointed. On the way home, she raised the idea of calling the people who usually show up and inviting them over to chow on munchies and watch the Superbowl. I had no objection, and The Wife didn't either, so the gig was on.

She called a few kids, I helped clean and cook, The Wife got uptight as usual when under pressure of hosting a social event, I dropped "Charlie" off at her mother's and picked up supplies, and at 4 I went with "Josie" to get one of her friends (on this ride was when I shared Beth's strategy with her). A couple of other friends showed up around the time the game started, and we had sloppy joes, pickles, chips, soda and brownies laid out like a feast for them.

"Josie" then got at least two calls (we have information from "undisclosed sources" that it may have been more) from Snotnose, who apparently didn't like the idea of a member of his personal harem seeing other boys that he didn't know in a social setting. Too bad for him. Due to those calls, however, phones have definitely been secured for the night and I'm doing the strings-on-doors routine in case anything's in the works for tonight.

Somewhat late, a boy "Josie" has definitely showed interest in showed up. He is the son of the couple who usually host the Sunday-night youth gatherings, and I gather he's some sort of "hottie". The Wife seems to concur on that, and she's definitely more qualified than me to make that call. Whatever the case, his father is aware of his interest in her and hers in him, and he was less aware that there is a semi-professional team dedicated to keeping her end of that equation under control, so he made it a point to show up later in the evening. It was a very interesting parental discussion with a man who has deep love for his son and genuine affection for all these kids. I know him from church and from helping with Habitat for Humanity, and I like him. I haven't had a best friend for many years, but this is the kind of guy I could develop a good friendship with. I'd like that, if it was to blossom that way.

Anyway, we shared Beth's idea with him, and it struck him as a great idea too. It's more likely to be used in his case as well, because his son is a "good" boy, meaning he's never been in real trouble, but he does have firm friendships with kids that are more marginal and who may try to pull him off the straight-and-narrow. I'll pass along any tales of woe or success involving that as they are passed to me.

There was much merriment, much laughter, and much sugar consumed, especially after "Josie" broke out and passed around the stash of giant Pixie Stix we bought her in a weak moment during our last run to Sam's Club. Due to that last, there was also several teenagers bouncing off the ceiling. You'd think we'd learn. But hey, there wasn't a drop of alcohol consumed, nobody got an STD or pregnant, and "Josie" (and her friend) got another chance to see how kids can have fun without chemical or sexual stimulants of any kind. Priorities, people. We accomplished the important things.

Plus, the other father got to plug the youth group to "Josie's" friend, and he may even show up. I may offer him rides if he wants to go, come to that. At base, my mission here is to help kids, right? Especially the ones who are given to my official care as foster kids, but that doesn't exclude helping their friends where I can, and doesn't excuse me from it either. I had a chance to talk to this kid, and from what I can tell he's a genuinely nice kid. I hope I see more of him, and given my self-imposed goals it's pretty much a moral obligation to do what I can to try to steer him in the right direction.

So now we're back to our original cast of characters: Willy, Tasha, Zoey, Sophie, "Josie", The Wife and me. Until tomorrow night, or the next one, or next weekend, anyway. Who knows who will come waltzing through the door then to empty our refrigerator and enrich our lives?

I love my life.


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