In typical fashion of my first-born, almost 13-year-old son, Mason, he called me recently with an urgent request.

In typical fashion of my first-born, almost 13-year-old son, Mason, he called me recently with an urgent request.

“Mom, I need some addresses for a fundraiser we are having at school,” he said, reminding me that last year I had provided him with a list long enough to win him a coveted prize. He told me he needed between six to 10 addresses.

“When do you need these by?” I asked.

“Tomorrow morning,” was his reply.

I used to have an addresses book, but that was when I wrote actual letters and sent them through snail mail. Now with e-mail, texting and smart phones, I rarely remember a person’s phone number, much less a mailing address.

I remembered once a couple of years back putting some addresses in a file in my computer. As I was on the phone with him, I went over to my computer to find it turned off.

“It seems your going to have to talk to me for a while as I start the computer back up,” I told him.

“Ok....” was the reply followed by 30 seconds of silence.

“Is it up yet?” he asked again.

“Not yet. Tell me what you did this past weekend,” I probed.

“Nothing...” was the response followed by another 30 seconds of silence.

“How is school?” I asked.


“Have you gone anywhere fun and exciting?” I asked.

“Not really...” 

“How about I call you back when I’ve found what I’m looking for?” I asked.

“Well, I guess I did go to a friend’s house this weekend for a party,” he offered.

Now we were getting somewhere.

“What was the party for?” I asked, assuming it was a birthday party, but I needed to stall for time.

“It wasn’t a birthday party, it was a ‘congratulations for not visiting the hospital in the past six months party,’” he said.

What on earth?

My first thought was that maybe one of his friends had a disease that caused him to spend more time in the hospital than in school or at home.

I couldn’t have been more wrong.

Apparently Mason’s friend is a little reckless or clumsy (or maybe both) and visits the hospital frequently when he’s sustained injuries from, well, I guess, just being himself.

“Actually,” Mason said, “the day before the party he broke his arm, so technically he didn’t make it the full six months, but the party was already planned so his parents went ahead with it.” 

I wondered to myself if everyone was asked to bring medical supplies as gifts. Before I could ask, my computer dinged that it was finally ready. Finding the file was harder than I had anticipated and after another 10 minutes of more awkward conversation, Mason told me to call him back.

After 30 minutes I located the file and opened it to find the only addresses I had were my own (I guess maybe I was afraid at one point I would forget it), my parents, my sister and my brother’s addresses. So much for getting him the prize.

Hubby stepped in and texted his family for their addresses. I did the same for my extended family.

Within minutes, Hubby’s family had sent three more addresses.

Over a half-hour later my phone remained so silent I checked to make sure I hadn’t accidentally turned it off.

Six addresses was all I could manage to scrounge up. I called Mason back to give him the list.

“Did you find 10 addresses for me?” he asked eagerly.

“I found you six and next year I’d appreciate more time,” I said. “Why didn’t you call me sooner?” 

“I forgot.” 

I hope he learned his lesson: don’t put off for weeks what is due tomorrow!