“Dive In!” By Chris Zito

What takes a grown man hours to accomplish can be undone by a kindergartner in minutes.


Why can’t this kid be inside watching TV like a good American child?

It’s bad enough my kid is too young to help rake leaves yet, he’s also a constant disruption. He doesn’t just dive in. My boy Vince is a runner. He loves to barrel his way through the pile like Rocky Bleier trudging through a goal line defense, leaving it scattered like linebackers who have missed a tackle. See? He’s got.me so upset I’m using two metaphors in one sentence. I’m as anxious as a June bride, a first time father, an ugly guy about to meet his online date for the first time after lying on his profile. Oh God, make it stop!


I’m as flummoxed as a fourth grader in algebra class.

I know you’re reading this and saying, “Come on, Chris. He’s only five. What about the joy of autumn in New England? What about the precious moments watching your little boy grow up and discover his own back yard?” What about you coming over and helping me bags these babies up?


Only 72 more bags and we’re done until next year!

Normally I’d agree with you. I’ve been through this before so I pride myself in seeing each day as special and taking in every moment. But the leaf thing… I hate to admit it but there’s only so much raking per year left in my shoulders. Too much of a lousy thing makes it difficult for me to raise my coffee to my lips the next morning. To try to help I’ve devised the following scheme. Vince gets his own pile. This bright idea was designed to keep him out of the piles Daddy is getting ready to put in bags. Problem is the kid annihilates it so quickly he moves onto mine.  He’s so much faster than me it’s like the Tasmanian Devil running around Bugs Bunny. Dammit, there I go again!


Come to think of it this looks more like me after Vince jumps into my leaf pile!

The truth is after getting over my initial annoyance I can’t hep but smile as I watch him frolic through those leaves. He’s just so darn delighted. He’s a happy kid. Not a care in the world. Sure it makes for more raking but it’s enough to make any father feel like a million bucks.

Thanks for reading. Tell your pals.
Chris Zito

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