To my son Tommy,
"Am I a smoker now?" you asked with a whimper and tears in your eyes. I couldn't help but chuckle as I tried to reassure you that you had not smoked. You had found your Great Great Uncle Mickey Slagle's pipe (pictured above) and stuck it in your mouth.
We had to go to YouTube so you could see all the things necessary for smoking a pipe. Since you didn't have fire and tobacco, you were fine. But it still hasn't sunk in.
We had a long conversation about smoking and how you shouldn't start and how your mom and I smoked and how lots of people used to smoke. We had constant reassurance that you didn't have to check mark "smoker" on any future applications and how it is best never to start. We talked about how your mom and I quit because we wanted more years in our life to continue to get to know you. Not sure how much sunk in, but you nodded and then asked with tears coming back, "Do I smoke now?"
Sincerely with love from your dad,