While I was out, two cases of beer were delivered.
"But my friends paid for them!"
According to my fifteen-year-old, I said that anything under fifty bottles of beer was okay for his upcoming overnight party in which he and about seven friends will play computer games all night. Having vetoed the Red Bull, I might have expected the bull.
Since the legal drinking age is sixteen on planet Germany, I said the sixteen-year-olds could have maximum two beers apiece, and that my son could have the same too, but that else anyone under the legal age would have to get his parents' permission.
The fifteen-year-old is open-mouthed with resentful astonishment.
Then there's the twelve-year-old, who, when told to put on a sweater, because it is fifty degrees (that's ten degrees celsius, Europeans) says, in a profoundly annoyed fashion, "That's waste, Mom, because I'm not cold, and I'm not gonna get cold, and I'm not gonna catch a cold . . . "
If I have had enough sleep, I explain the importance of warm clothes and the prevalence of viruses in a peaceful fashion while handing him a sweater. This is however never the case. I usually bark: "put it on, or we're not leaving," and today, he did. Now, the ten-year-old presents another picture. She is very sweet. And even when hormones begin coursing through her, and acne sprouts on that smooth forehead, she will not, I believe, address me with any four-letter words. The worst so far: "I didn't ask for that, Mommy," with an indignant stare (as though looking down her nose through an heirloom lorgnette at a peasant over whose neck she will shortly step ) when I hand her a favorite sandwich. At least, the sandwich that, last week, was in favor, although she might not admit that.