Unlike Adam and I, Jared was never big on performing and taking part in our own made up plays/productions. When we were small this worked to our advantage. Since we couldn't exactly count on him to participate and/or remember his lines throughout our entire movies of epic proportions, Adam and I simply cast Jared as the dog, or monkey. Usually this suited Jared just fine. This way he could come in and out of the movie at basically anytime, and he was free to speak unintelligibly anytime he felt like it. Every now and then disaster struck, and Jared got the urge to take on a human role. When this happened, he didn't really change his acting methods employed when playing a monkey or a dog. Jared still came in and out when he pleased. He still made up his own lines, and delivered them at his own discretion. But the difference was clearly there, and on our homemade movies, you can see the cringing terror all over mine and Adam's faces.
As we got older, and moved more into the genre of Christmas plays, Adam gave over his role of director to Brooke and me. For some reason, we still felt like we just had to have Jared's participation in our Christmas productions, whether he liked it or not. I do have to commend Brooke and myself for our ingenuity of giving Jared the role of "stage manager." This way he was behind the scenes, and just as much as ever, he was free to come in and out whenever he pleased. Many times the lights didn't go on/off when they were scheduled to, or us girls had to come out on "stage" to show him where he was supposed to move the props to for the next scene. But, he felt like he was in charge, and hey, at least he wasn't making up and delivering his own lines!
Jared has always been a very friendly person. One of Jared's main positions in baseball was catcher. This was a very good spot for him, because it meant he always had someone to talk to, and I don't mean the batter. I'm talking about the umpire. Starting at about the age 9, Jared started collecting umpire friends. In between innings, and during warmups, Jared and the ump behind the plate always shared a leisurely chat. When Jared got a double the field ump would walk by to say "Hey man, whats up?" Just strolling around the park to watch other siblings games, the umps would throw him a friendly wave, and Jared would turn to one of us and say, "That guy's my favorite ump!" And of course, it would usually be a different ump every week.
From a very young age Jared always had a very lofty aspiration. It was a goal very different from most males in this world. No one ever quite understood his yearning toward this goal, but that doesn't mean we didn't do what we could to aid him in his pursuit.
Jared's goal was simply this: to be completely bald.
Jared kept his hair in a buzz during almost all of his childhood, but for Jared, this (no pun intended) simply didn't cut it. He wanted to have his head shaved. He was constantly making deals with Dad such as "if my baseball team wins the tournament, you'll shave my head." Now, isn't it usually the person that loses the bet has to get their head shaved? Not for Jared, when his baseball team won (and I think it was also his soccer team once), he jubilantly got out the razor and made Dad start to work on turning his son into a human q-ball! Eventually Jared grew out of this, and listening to my wizened suggestion, grew out his hair. For a year or two, he had a head full of more hair than anyone knew he was capable of growing! Now that he is about to become an old married man, he has settled down to a normal everyday head of hair. So, Jared, in honor of this post, I have a deal to make with you......
Next year, if West Huntstville wins the softball tournament (and you're still playing on the team of course) you get to shave your head! And yes, I said get to, because we all know you want to be bald again!