My son has become a tackler. A 10-month-old tackler. I first noticed it at Sean’s birthday party last weekend. Sean was sitting on the floor, playing nicely, as little first-birthday-boys do. Conal was excited. The kids! The toys! The fun alphabet tiles on the floor! It was too much. So, he crawled over to Sean and tackled him. Oh, ha ha. Only, not. I picked him up, told him to be gentle and everyone went back to happy-time play.

Then it happened again. Yesterday, at a mothers group meeting.

So, now I have one of those kids. I can see it now: For the next several or 18 years I am going to be running after Conal shouting, “Be gentle! Be niiiiice, niiiiice…”