Tale of the Neverending Boy

zane, honea, eating, food, soup“I’m hungry,” he said. Again.

He is six going on sixteen, and where other parents are saving for college we are investing in the future of his stomach. We are afraid. We are very afraid.

We have two boys that enjoy a good meal, but where the older is content with a fairly traditional dining plan, the younger is somewhat more demanding, and apparently hollow.

“When is breakfast?” he asked, hours after he had already eaten the meal in question — a span in which he also enjoyed an apple and a banana.

Then I found myself searching the Internet for CPS approved feed bags (I couldn’t find any). What? He loves oatmeal.

In addition, he is the only carnivore in our home, and as such he likes a side of meat whenever possible, where “whenever” means “as soon as.”

For lunch I made the boys bean and black olive burritos (per their enthusiastic request) with sides of rice and fresh fruit. He also had a few slices of salami to keep up appearances.

Twenty minutes later he had some string cheese.

Thirty minutes later he had some yogurt.

Ten minutes later he wanted a popsicle.

Five minutes later he still wanted a popsicle.

Four minutes.

Three minutes.

Two minutes.

“Holy Dora on a troll bridge,” I said, but this time with feeling. “Fine, eat a popsicle!”

The popsicles are homemade and 100% juice, so it’s not the idea of sweets that gave me pause, but rather the endless demand for food. IT. NEVER. STOPS. And I’ve got stuff to do.

No, he doesn’t have a tapeworm.

In fact, he is as fit as a fiddle, which, if I understand correctly, is a totally buff instrument. I have more fat in my big toe than he has on his entire body, and he has more strength in one finger than I have in my whole arm (proportionally speaking). The kid is freakishly strong — like strangers comment on it at the park freakish.

And that, I believe, is his secret. He has so much energy and a natural gift for sport and activity that he burns off each bite the minute he swallows it. We should all be so lucky.

It all adds up to some pretty scary grocery bills over the next dozen or so years, but with any luck it might also include an athletic scholarship, in which case we might break even, financially speaking.


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