Mikey had the brim of the fedora pushed up as he buckled in, which made me want to cringe. Every movie that showed someone wearing a fedora like that was a doofus, a dork, a moron, so I had to coach him.
“Not bad, but the best way is to bring it down in front, and then you tilt it a little on one side, kind of covering one eye. Makes you mysterious.”
“Like a pirate?”
“Sure, a little like a pirate. And you just act cool.”
He tried it out, which seemed more like blank, but it was a start.
The flight attendant, Amanda, came by, asking for drink orders from Mikey’s mom. I leaned in close to him and whispered, “Okay, when she asks what you want to drink, you gotta do it with style. Feel the hat. So when she asks, you say, ‘Chocolate milk. Neat. Leave the bottle.’ She’ll know you’re cool.”
From my other side, I heard an aborted laugh turn into a cough. Mikey nodded, though. Amanda turned to him with a pleasant, practiced smile, and asked “What would you like to drink?”
Mikey tried making his voice a little deeper, but got the line out, perfectly.
Amanda’s smile switched at the corners, becoming more genuine, and then nodded. “And for you, sir?” She asked me.
“Same as my partner, but make ‘em doubles.”
Nikki began to chuckle, and it threatened to be a side-splitting laugh.
“Only you, Matthew. Only you.”
“Only you could corrupt a young boy with a fedora and by telling him to order chocolate milk like it was fine scotch.”
“Hey, the world would be a much better place if everyone ordered their drinks like they were fine scotch. ‘Chocolate malted, shaken, not stirred.”
That was too much for Nikki and she fell against the far arm of the couch laughing.