For the past several days, Dec has been playing with a bathtub basketball hoop my mother gave him, replete with a ball from every major sport in the U.S. It is currently stuck to the side of the television armoire in our living room. (Thankfully, the net is sealed at the bottom, so we aren’t swimming in balls.)
He watched some of a slam dunk competition with his dad over the weekend, a prelude to the NBA All-Star game. It included one player who put a cupcake with a lit candle between the backboard and the hoop, then extinguished the flame with the force of his dunk. Since then, Dec’s been “taking it to the cupcake” (a.k.a. sinking balls into the armoire net), yelling “YES!” in his biggest he-man voice.
If you were to ask Declan how he is doing in the past few weeks, he would have answered instead with his full name, followed by the daddy-induced tag line, “the boy who is the man.” He’s declared this to strangers in elevators, check-out clerks and anyone he’s talked to on the phone.
Since Sunday, he’s been referring to himself as his full name, followed by “the boy who is the man, LeBron Declan.”