The boy requested instant noodles. Lord only knows where he got the idea from. “Which ones?” Poppa asked. “These ones are 99 cents. Those ones are $2.30.”
“What’s the difference?” Mr 5 inquired.
When I arrived to pick up Ollie from Poppa’s place later that afternoon, they were both at the table, with two steaming pots of noodles in front of them. One pot was plain-pack, the other an ironically unidentifiable name brand. They had compared the contents of the flavour sachets, and were conducting a taste test worthy of a 3-star sommelier. Ollie was quick to point out that both pottles contained a “foldy fork”.
“So” said Poppa. “What’s the difference?”
Ollie’s eyes swivelled up and left, indicating deep thought. “We-eeell”, he said in trademark singsong, “I thought the one with pictures would be better, but they taste the same.” The conclusion was obvious. “The pictures must cost a lot, but I don’t think they’re worth it.” He nodded sagely to himself.
I think it was about three months later that Dad passed away. It’s been four months since then. In those four months I’ve never answered Ollie with “just because”, or “I don’t know”. And I hope I never do again.