Try as I might, I can’t find a fictional character that is like my J (or Soldier Son, for that matter). They are one-of-a-kind originals and even the greatest creative mind could not dream up more interesting creatures. What I used to call J, when he was little, is “Mr. Consumer.” This still fits today. J has champagne taste on a beer drinker’s budget. He knows what he wants, and he will not compromise. Even if he can’t afford it. This is one reason he joined the army reserves. It’s not the only reason, but it’s a big reason. Even though we pay for the boys’ educational expenses (except for books–which I make them buy because then I’m sure they’ll take the time to shop for used books since it’s their money), he had to have more cash to properly outfit his beloved truck and of course to pay for his tattoos. The boys also have to take care of their own discretionary needs. Mama will not pay for car stereos, dates, or tattoos!
Anyways, Mr. Consumer would always have a 2 or 3 page Christmas list. He was always up to date on every trend out there, and all the coolest gadgets advertised on Nickelodeon would be included on his must-have list. Meanwhile, I couldn’t get any ideas from the other two boys. They would be happy with whatever Santa would bring them, and made Santa wrack his brain trying to come up with ideas. But J made Santa wrack his brain trying to cut his massive list down to an equitable size.
J always likes to look good. He would look good in a potato sack, but you could never convince him of this. So he spends a lot of money on his clothes and bling. His styles have changed over the years, but he still knows exactly what he wants. And it’s never found on the bargain racks. Once he hit middle school, I couldn’t buy his clothes for him. No lie–there would be two button-down shirts. They would both be striped, similar colors. One he would love; the other he would hate. I couldn’t see much of a difference but Mr. Consumer could.
J is also a most generous person. He’ll leave huge tips, even though he’s a struggling college student himself. He puts himself into other people’s situation, and since he knows he’d like to get a nice tip, he’ll make sure he leaves a big tip. He doesn’t think twice about spending money on someone else. He’ll pick up the tab for his friends and he’ll always find wonderful gifts for his family members (even though mama hates to see him spend his money on her).
J is sweet and strong and loyal. He also has to find things out the hard way. Even though Big Daddy and I have 100 years of life experience and could say “I told you so” to J countless times, he still does things his own way. And had the concussions and totaled vehicles and bills that go along with never believing the voice of experience. But my J will be fine. I just hope he makes a lot of money someday!