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Sunday, July 24, 2011

Hey! You! Get Out of My Way! Part 19 Leaving Home

I walk around the corner and back into the kitchen just in time to see Laura’s father coming down the stairs from the upstairs bathroom. He is still singing “How to Handle a Woman” but has given it a Merengue beat. He is shaking his hands as if they were tambourines on either side of his head.

He comes to the bottom of the stairs and faces me; stopping dead in his tracks. “Who the hell are you, and why are you in my house?” he barks at me. I look into his face, it is pinched and angry. His singing and hand shaking has stopped, both hands are now held in fists down at his side. He has taken the stance that one takes if at a Mexican Standoff. His eyebrows are large and wiry; he has let them grow wild.

His eyes are growing larger and his face more pinched with every breath. I believe I am being put on, no one is this crazy. “That’s Laura’s friend Geoff,” Laura’s mother chimes in “Remember; we talked about him last night at dinner?” He starts thinking and I can actually see the wheels in his brain turn. Suddenly his face brightens. “Anyone who lives in this house contributes to society,” he yells taking his index finger and poking me in the chest. With that said he continues to walk on by, hands shaking in the air now whistling “How to Handle a Woman.”

He walks down the hallway, turns into a room and slams the door behind him. I stare. “What the fuck was that?” I think to myself. I turn back into the kitchen hoping to get some sort of answer. Laura is standing by the sink, soaking wet with a towel wrapped around her body eating string beans out of a colander. 

“He’s an asshole,” Laura says to her mother. Laura’s mother nervously smiles. “Keep your voice down,” her mother responds to Laura, looking over her shoulder at me. She smiles and pushes her glasses back up with her shoulder. “Is she afraid that I will think he is an asshole as well?” “Is that why she has shushed Laura?” “Is his being an asshole a secret?” I have a lot to ponder over dinner.

“Why doesn’t everyone go sit at the table,” Laura’s mother says in a sing song way. Laura still wrapped in a towel continues to eat beans out of the sink. Realizing that no one is moving she sighs and looks at Laura. “Laura, go get your father,” she asks in a quiet and soft voice. Without moving one step in any direction, Laura screams out “Dad, dinners ready.” 

Laura’s mother looks at me and a nervous smile crosses her face. I’m convinced, this family is nuts.

Laura turns on her heel and walks back up the stairs and I walk into the dining room. I sit on the side of the table furthest away from the kitchen with my back to one of the glass cabinets. Down the hall a door is quickly opened and slammed, her father rushes into the dining room and immediately sits at the head of the table.

He turns to me with a smile on his face and rests his face on his hands. Through clenched teeth he looks at me and says “I’m the head of this family.” We stare at each other for a good five minutes, he never breaks his gaze. I am not sure if I am required to respond to this statement or not.

To be continued………………

Geoffrey Doig-Marx holds all written and electronic rights to his writting "A Day in the Life". It can not be reprinted in part or whole without his written consent.

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