It was only a couple months ago that the NY Times ran a piece about a son and his father. Today, there is a new one by Kevin Brockmeier that is very compelling. I find this dynamic intriguing to read, even though my involvement can only ever be peripheral. I don't have a son to closely witness any such relationship, and my connection to my own father is more of the Daddy's Little Girl sort ("little" being a reminiscent term of endearment). I do get to see my brothers with their sons, and it is a fascinating thing to behold. Sometimes, they seem torn between the oversized love they have for their baby boys and the overwhelming sense of duty to raise them to become responsible men. I think mothers have a similar conundrum, although it seems to tip in the direction of spoiling children (of both genders).
Of course, all of this is theoretical: I have no children. And perhaps it is a tribute to Mr. Brockmeier and Mr. Hendrickson that they wrote their stories well enough to provoke such thoughts in someone who has so little to do with the concept.
Note: This picture is of a mural created completely of corn, and can be found on this year's Corn Palace in Mitchell, South Dakota. I visited the Corn Palace in 1991 on my drive 'cross country. Excepting a 3-day visit at my brother's place in Long Beach, South Dakota was the only state where I stayed more than a day (or even a few hours). If I hadn't been on a planned trek to Seattle, I might well have stayed in the least populated state in the nation. It is beautiful. Beautiful. Beautiful.