Boston Globe columnist Jeff Jacoby asks the question in his annual letter to his son:
Which son are you?
In a way, you have been all of them: You were once a bright and lively toddler, too young for questions, taking everything on faith. With speech came "simple" curiosity, along with an endless train of ingenuous questions about everything. Now, at age 12, you are becoming quite the adolescent, with a streak of "wicked" obstinacy — quick to challenge your parents’ views and to ask why their opinions should carry greater weight than yours. Then again, you have moments of wondrous maturity and good judgment, when your strong intelligence shows hints of the wise adult I hope you will become.
Which is the real you, Caleb? Are you the budding philosopher who has taken to insisting lately that "nothing really matters," since no matter what any of us does or doesn’t do, the universe won’t notice? Or the perennial naysayer who surprised me by saying yes when I proposed that you sign up for sailing lessons at Community Boating — and then surprised me even more by thoroughly enjoying the experience? Are you the sarcastic kid who mocks Mama when she loses her patience with you? Or the affectionate big brother who lavishes attention on Micah? Is the authentic Caleb the sometimes sullen pre-teen with the seemingly bottomless reserve of grievance and indignation? Or the industrious helper who for the last few days has rolled up his sleeves and good-naturedly pitched in to get the house ready for Passover?
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