If you have to get hit by a car may you be hit as lightly as my daughter was.
The driver was a fat guy with glasses that bore a strong resemblance to a country bumpkin lawyer from the midcities, but it wasn’t him.
Probably because he was too busy trying not to choke on a chicken bone or maybe this is the day he shot himself in the groin.
I don’t know and clearly I have much love for him, so much that I would cheer if fell down the stairs and hope he had enough momentum to go down another flight ass over elbow.
My baby girl and were in the midst of a quest to find the car I parked outside of the fairground. Under normal circumstances I have a good sense of direction but when the skies opened up on us I got turned around.
Instead of it being a short walk we did around three miles, much of it in a torrential downpour. By the time we got to the incident the rain was more of a light sprinkle.
It probably would have been pleasant if we weren’t soaked and tired. We might have laughed about it if the van hadn’t started to back in to her.
Fortunately it was the gentlest of taps making it a little nerve wracking for her and I and saving me the trouble of channeling the spirit of my great-great grandfather Lepa.
You know Lepa was the guy who got knocked down by a cab in Chicago but not hard enough to prevent him from rising up from the pavement to punch the cabbie in the head.
I Could Fill In Multiple Blanks
I know of someone who has multiple questions and I could fill in the blanks. It would only take a moment to do so, but who know if such a minutes comes or not.
Ok, I have a pretty good idea but I am not saying more than that.
Instead I’ll tell you the sky opened up upon my head twice today. The first was at the tail end of a business call and I was grateful that it was the end of the day.
Grateful because it is hard to be professional when you are so wet your boxers swishes while you walk.
Since the plan had was to meet the family at the fair I had a change of clothes in the car and I gratefully used skills developed as younger man to change in the car.
A short car ride later placed me at Fair Park but distraction overcame planning and instead of parking on the fairgrounds I parked just outside.
Or should I say I parked outside and trusted marking the spot in the GPS would make it easy to find later.
It didn’t hurt or should I say help that in the downpour I took us the wrong way and ended up on the far side of the Cotton bowl which placed me a solid two miles from the car.
Nor was I assisted by memory because in my distraction I didn’t lock in the details as I normally would and consequently the walk back to the car became a goddamn quest.
The drive home felt interminably long and I wondered if when I pulled into the garage instead of a 14 year-old daughter there would be a 17 or 18 year-old girl staring at me.
She was exceptionally frustrated because the plan was to get her home in time to do the last few pieces of homework and then have a few minutes to chill.
We got home about 90 minutes later than intended.
“Blame it on early onset Alzheimer’s. I don’t get lost like that.”
She asked if there was a history of it in the family and I said I don’t believe so but there was a moment where I wondered if I was fooling myself because my memory is normally crisp and this time it felt soggy.
One of the things I have noticed about Texas is how poorly lit and marked the roads are for night driving.
That and the rain made the ride home more challenging but what bothered me the most was for a moment I felt like it was 2007 and I was driving around Dallas by myself and totally lost.
I looked for landmarks like the Westin I stayed in back then and a couple of other spots that I find provide orientation and just didn’t locate them.
So I kept driving and instead of taking John Carpenter home I ended up taking the tollway to LBJ.
It got me home but it all took longer than it should have.
Blame it on the fat attorney and the chicken bone he ought to choke on.
Signs of Daylight
We found the Dodger game playing one of the beer gardens and watched the last two innings of play.
For a moment I stared at my children in disbelief and shock because they looked so damn old to me.
Because I know we are approaching the days in which they’ll move out and I’ll wonder where all the time went.
I stare at them and hope I have done enough and that I’ll continue to do enough to help them navigate life on their own.
It is not a given even though we wish it would be.
Sometimes I hear stories about other kids and I wonder what is going to happen to them when they don’t have mom and dad to help them survive ever nick, scrape and bruise.
Overall mine have had a pretty good life but I know they have dealt with some shit that others haven’t had and that it hasn’t always been easy.
Most of the time I don’t feel badly about it but sometimes it is hard not to feel like they have caught the short end of the stick when they didn’t have to.
But I also know they have learned to adapt and roll with things far better than many. They know how to cook and clean and advocate for themselves so there is that.
They’re laughing about something but I haven’t any idea what. I hear the older tell the younger that dad is coming and the conversation changes.
“Whatever do you need father?”
I smile and tell them they need to learn how to play this on the piano.
“You never bought a piano or gave us lessons father.”
“Ok smartass, you remember that I am the cool dad that didn’t make you take piano lessons.”
They look at each other and laugh, but it is not because I said something funny. It is good to see they have a solid relationship that isn’t predicated on living in the same house.
If we can trust the iPhone for measuring steps and distances covered the kiddies put in more than 7 miles during their time at the fair.
I did around 4.5 and my left ankle hurts. Can’t figure out if I twisted it or if it is just one of those mystery aches that come as we age.
Maybe I’ll go catch some shut eye and ignore the urge to go fight with numbskulls, knuckleheads and the lickspittlers.
These aren’t the conversations I really want to have, those are…different.