The lead knee


The other morning as I sent Reid off to school, I noticed he had a hole in his athletic pants. The ones I just bought a month ago because he’d outgrown, and worn out, the other ones.

“What happened to your pants, Reid?”

“I dunno.”

Standard answer, I don’t know why I even ask. I already know the answer. He’s hard on clothes, and I dare risk oodles of hate mail by stating that most boys I know are hard on clothes, especially when it comes to the knees. Girls can be hard on stuff too, don’t get me wrong, but I never had this conversation with my Mom friends when our daughters were 6, 7 and 8.  Actually, I think it has more to do with birth order and personality, but that debate could go on for hours and I digress. This isn’t about gender, or birth order, not one ioda. It’s about knees. And not both knees, at least not at first. In Reid’s case, it’s the right knee. His lead knee.

It took a while to figure this out but while at one of our many evenings at the rink watching Sydney skate, Reid was bored and found another boy to run around with. What did they do for fun? They ran down the corridor and slid, right knee first, along the floor. This gave the boys an hour of hilarious fun, and I sunk into my uncomfortable plastic seat sipping my tea, pretending to be annoyed by those disruptive children who were clearly not mine.

The mystery was solved. He blows out his right knee because he leads with that knee when he slides along the floor, down a grassy hill or toboggans without a toboggan. He blows through at least one pair of snow pants every winter, always the right knee meeting its demise first.

It doesn’t matter the type of pant either: track pants, jeans, cargo, snow pants… no material is immune. Some may last a little longer, but it’s only a matter of time. What I need are kids pants that come with knee patches hanging from the tag instead of those extra buttons. No one uses the extra button. Ever. But patches? Golden. I need a Mables Labels, but for knee patches.

For Reid, there’s only one type of pant I buy: cheap.



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