America, we have a mystery to solve. Mommy has a secret admirer. (I don’t know WHY she has a secret admirer, America. Apparently everyone has their own standards.)
Daddy, don’t panic. Someone may be trying to woo Mommy. But you don’t have to worry. What are the chances he is a real threat . . . like, say, that gorgeous hunk of blue fuzz Grover? Or that lovable Daniel Tiger (*swoon*)? Or heartthrob Neal Patrick Harris? Daddy, I’ve done the math.* Chances are very, very low.
Anyway, America, here’s the story. It all started about three weeks ago. It was late one afternoon. Daddy was still at work. I was playing with Mommy. Jacob came running into the room holding an envelope. And interrupted us.
Jacob: What is THIS? A letter? At THIS time of day?!?
Mommy: Hmm. Let’s see. It looks like it is addressed to . . . “Jacob’s Mommy”.
Mommy seemed skeptical.
Mommy: Jacob, who is this from?
Jacob: I have NO idea.
Mommy: Who gave it to you?
Jacob: I just found it. On the floor. By the door.
Apparently, the US Postal service is now delivering mail to inside your house. Kind of like email. Only creepier.
Jacob: What does it say?
Mommy: It says, “A letter from your secret admirer. I love to spend the day with you.” Awww. That’s so sweet. Are you sure you don’t know who it’s from, Jacob? I wish I knew so that I could give that person a hug.
Mommy, sometimes you act like you DON’T EVEN WATCH any of the horror movies I put on your Amazon Prime list. (I’m just trying to protect you, Mommy.) Just so you know: This. Is. How. They. All. Start.
And let’s not overlook: “To Jacob’s Mommy”. Really, Secret Admirer? If you’re going to make a play for Mommy, at least address her properly: The Woman Who Gave the World the Gift of Emma (and Jacob). Whoever sent Mommy this letter has NO RESPECT. Perhaps this is our first clue . . . ?
And there was another clue. Here’s what was actually written in the letter: “A letr frum your secrit amiar. I love to spint the day wit you.” Oh, America. Your educational system has failed. Once. Again. (Nice work, tax dollars.) Clearly the secret admirer is no better at spelling than a first grader or . . . Mommy.
Anyway, in the days that followed, Mommy received nine more letters. NINE. Jacob was always the one to find them on the floor. Just inside the front door. (Weird, huh?) And he always sounded a bit annoyed by the whole thing. (“ANOTHER letter?!?”) I think he’s worried Mommy will run off with the secret admirer. And there won’t be anyone around to make him pasta in the shape of Arthur. Or respond to his many unreasonable demands. (Yes, America, my big brother Jacob isn’t always as delightfully easy going as The Emma. KIDS.)
In any event, the letters usually say something like this, “Another letter from your secret admirer. I hope you like this drawing” or “Another letter from your secret admirer, I hope you like this paper airplane” or “Another letter from your secret admirer, I hope you like this book on how to take care of a dog”. Wow. That secret admirer is SMOOTH. Nothing gets a gal’s heart racing like a book that explains how to take care of a pet that she is CLEARLY going to be saddled with once her children lose interest in it and the pet somehow STILL needs to be fed, bathed, and walked. A book that is both practical and thoughtful. Nice work, Secret Admirer.
But who is the secret admirer? I mean, in the unlikely even that it turns out NOT to be heartthrob Neal Patrick Harris. (WHY ARE YOU SMIRKING, AMERICA?) Of course, Mommy is making absolutely NO progress in figuring any of this out. Every time she gets a letter, she asks Jacob if he knows who sent it. Mommy: He. Doesn’t. Know. He has said so. NINE TIMES. And EVERY time Jacob says he doesn’t know, Mommy makes the same guess.
Mommy: Jacob, could it be you . . . ?
No, Mommy. It is NOT Jacob. He has told you ‘no’. Over and over again. TRY GUESSING SOMEONE ELSE. (It couldn’t be Jacob. Mommy, remember that thing about how you’re NOT a Freudian psychologist? Mmm.)
Clearly, it is time for The Emma to get her Nancy Drew on. Okay, here are our clues so far. The secret admirer:
is willing to overlook Mommy’s (many, obvious) flaws
is working on a tight budget
Any thoughts, America? Could it be Jon Stewart? I hear his schedule has opened up considerably. (But can he draw?) Well, America, if you have any guesses, please let me know. For once, The Emma is stumped.
*It is probably only fair to point out that my understanding of math– okay, my understanding of numbers– is rather rudimentary. And I’ll be honest. Things get a little murky for The Emma after number 11.