“Dad, I want a narwhal cake for my birthday.”

“A narwhal cake?”

“Yes, a narwhal cake.”

I have a ten year old who knows exactly what he wants.

“So you want a cake with a picture of a narwhal on it? The whale with the unicorn horn?”

“First of all, there is no evidence that unicorns exist. Second, it’s not a horn; it’s a tooth. Third, I don’t want a cake with a picture of a narwhal on it, I want a narwhal cake. A cake in the shape of a narwhal.”

I don’t know where his sense of purpose comes from. But it permeates everything he does. He knows what clothing combinations he wants to wear to school. He knows he wants to decorate his Valentine’s box with wolves. He knows that he wants to spend his Saturday morning creating an alpine landscape out of papier-mâché. He knows he wants to read Moby Dick over fall break. Yes, Moby Dick. We couldn’t talk him out of it. He is on page 108.

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