"We are no longer the knights who say ‘Ni!’ We are now the knights who say ‘Ecky-ecky-ecky-ecky-pikang-zoop-boing-goodem-zoo-owli-zhiv’!’ We must give you a test."
"What is this test, oh Knights of . . . Knights who until recently said ‘Ni!’"
-Monty Python and the Holy Grail.
Night before last, Ryan and I got some take out for dinner, and ended up spending about three hours sitting at our dining room table, talking about all sorts of things. Our relationship grew several levels, and while I’m keeping the details of that to myself, I will do something I rarely do: I’ll take some credit for being a good parent. I will also do something I quite often do: I’ll marvel at how wise Ryan is. Both of the kids have their pod-people days, of course, but over the last several months, those days are fewer and farther between than ever before, and I’m grateful for that.
Late on Wednesday night, while we cleaned up our dinner dishes, Ryan said, "You know, I’ve wanted to watch Monty Python for a really long time."
"I have Holy Grail in the living room," I said.
"Do you think I’ll like it?" He said.
"Well, I’m not sure. It’s a blend of absurdity and dry British humor. It’s one of those things that you either grok right away, or just don’t respond to."
"Will you watch it with me?" He said.
"Sure," I said, "we’ll watch it tomorrow after dinner."
And that’s what we did. Anne and Nolan went back into our bedroom to watch TV, and Ryan and I fired up Monty Python and the Holy Grail on our home theater.
I was unsure if he’d like it or not, because his generation has been raised on the comedic stylings of films like Anchorman and televison shows like MAD TV – not exactly the type of humor you’ll find in Flying Circus.
I dimmed the lights, and hit play.
"Why are there subtitles?" He said.
Around the time "a moose bit my sister once . . . " came up on the screen, he was holding his stomach, convulsing in giggles.
"Ah, good. He gets it." I proudly thought.
He loved all the things I loved when I was his age: the French Taunter, The Black Knight, The Castle Anthrax, and the Killer Rabbit.
"I can see why you liked this so much," he said when it was over. "How many times have you seen this?"
"Between eighty and a hundred, I guess," I said.
"Will you watch it with me again?" he said, "I feel like I missed some funny stuff that I’ll catch next time."
"Of course," I said.
"Okay, I’m going to bed now," he said.
He walked back to his room singing, "Brave Sir Robin ran away . . . bravely ran away, away . . ."
He laughed to himself as he closed his bedroom door.