I slept a little late this morning, and so I was trying to hurry out the door. I leaned into my daughter’s bedroom, and grabbed the foot she had sticking out from under the covers, and squeezed it gently. She took a raspy, whistling breath, and without opening her eyes croaked “I don’t feel good. I can hardly breathe.”

Hmmm. She had been feeling puny and coughing last night, and now it looked like she was worse. I stopped trying to rouse her and moved on to my son, who was face down under his blankets.

I tickled his back. He mumbled. I squeezed his legs. He mumbled. I staged a tarantula race up his left side and down the right. He giggled. Okay, he was awake.

I informed the wife that our daughter seemed sicker, and Mrs. Agent said she would check her temperature.

I finished getting ready, and tried to head out the door. I say ‘tried’, because as I went through the kitchen I ran into my son standing, head down, looking disconsolate. I asked him what was wrong.

“I don’t know what to have for breakfast.” he said.

Hmmm. I started opening cupboards. A bran muffin? He said no. A bowl of cereal? He said no. Bagel with cream cheese? He said no. Well, what sounds good to you? Nothing sounded good to him.

Sigh. “How about I fix you an egg sandwich really quick?” “Okay!” he said.

So, I start the toast, heat up the skillet, add butter, wait until it sizzles, toss in a couple of eggs and break the yolks. When they’re good and set, I flip both eggs over with a toss of the pan, then put it back on the heat to set up the other side. I salt and pepper the eggs, slide them on to the toast, and serve.

As the boy starts eating, the wife comes into the kitchen. “She has a fever of 101.5 degrees. She’s not going to school today.” Which plays havoc with Mrs. Agent’s carefully planned schedule of errands and chores.

“I got sidetracked into breakfast duty.” I said.

Mrs. Agent looked down at the boy, munching his fried egg sandwich. “Oh, you lucky duck!” she said.

At which point the boy gave her a truly shit-eating grin, all signs of previous melancholy dispelled.

Oh ho. Daddy got played this morning. Oh yes. Daddy got played like a Stradivarius.