My Aspiring Robot Engineer Got his Diploma Today

If someone asked you, at age 5, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” What would you have said? My five-year-old son, Leo, graduated from preschool today and while you might laugh at the notion of a preschool commencement exercise, I have to admit that I enjoyed it very much. The kids wore handmade paper caps-no gowns- and each wrote what they want to be when they grow up on top of it.

Here are some of the desired occupations I noticed: Home Depot worker, (ladder) climber, video game player, magician, doctor, and teacher. I didn’t notice anyone who aspired to be a personal injury attorney, journalist, lobbyist, nail tech, customer service representative, or any number of other jobs. My favorite cap award goes to Leo’s friend, Liam, who wants to be a soldier and wrote on his cap: “I’m going to defeat the Russians and protect the city!”

Leo says he wants to be a robot engineer and his girlfriend, Kaline, (named after Tigers great Al Kaline) whom he insists he will marry one day, aspires to be a pro golfer. I will be proud of my son no matter what occupation he chooses, and I don’t much care for the very American notion that one’s career defines who they are, but I think my son would make a pretty damn good robot engineer, or anything else he chooses for that matter.

In the fall, he’ll move on to Kindergarten. Life moves quickly. It seems like just yesterday that we spent our evenings pacing around our apartment, sometimes turning on our vacuum cleaner in the middle of the night to try to soothe baby Leo. Before we know it, he’ll be in “open relationships” with girls wearing inappropriate outfits on Facebook, and will be too embarrassed to shower me with affection in public, as he does now. I just want to savor this day and my little 5-year-old robot engineer, Leo Carmen Seminara.