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Monday, August 1, 2011

Hey! You! Get Out of My Way! Part 20 Leaving Home

Dinner gets stranger and stranger. Laura’s Dad takes whatever moment he can to glare at me and mouth crazy words I can’t make out. He only does this when he’s sure that no one is looking. I keep glancing at Laura and her Mom to see if they are seeing what I’m seeing. Laura’s Mom slowly chews her food while she stares into the distance, the dining room lights reflect off her glasses. Every now and then she sighs as if remembering a sad moment in her life. Laura on the other hand, winks at me when our eyes meet.

“What do you plan on doing for a job?” Laura’s Dad announces suddenly breaking the silence. “This is not a free ride; I am not the head of a gravy train,” he raises his hand and bangs it on the table. The cups jump.  Laura’s Mom quickly comes out of her haze and mumbles “Dear.” 

Laura on the other hand tells her father to “Shut the fuck up.” Acting like a slapped dog, Laura’s Dad returns to glaring at me. A long moment of silence falls over the table. Laura’s Dad begins humming his favorite tune “How to handle a woman.”

Laura’s Mom comes out of her haze for the second time at dinner and slowly turns her head in her husband’s direction. A frown crosses her face. “I hate that song, it’s so degrading,” she says looking directly at him. He stops in mid hum, stares at her and begins to sing at full voice “If I knew you were coming, I’d have baked a cake.”  The title “Welcome to the Monkey House,” appears in my head.

Laura stands up from the table, grabs her plate and goes into the kitchen. She pauses in the doorway long enough to give her father the finger.

Laura’s Dad takes this moment of me not being protected and swings his head towards me. “I assume you will be sleeping upstairs across the hallway from my lovely daughter Laura?” “I guess,” I say. “I haven’t been told where I am sleeping.” “Good,” he says forcing a smile through clenched teeth, just in case his wife looks over. “I patrol the house at all hours.” With this said he stands up, steps away from the table, walks into his bedroom and slams his door. For the third time tonight Laura’s Mom is jostled out of her haze. She shakes her head and sighs.

I’m not sure why any of this conversation is happening. I don’t have enough clues yet to put together the reason why there is such a huge level of dysfunction going on.

To be continued………

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

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