snowball ride -
Viv and I stayed up way past our bedtimes last night to watch "Fiddler On The Roof" on one of the movie channels. I'll admit it right now, I'm a sucker for stuff like that when it's good, and Fiddler is good. It made a mint for a reason. We got drawn into it primarily by the inescapable cinematic undertow of Norman Jewison's directorial work, but the music and dance and acting show off so much damn talent that it's hard to say it was any one thing that pulled us away from the household financial paperwork and riveted us to the TV screen. And besides, we were in the middle of going over interest rates and 401k stuff, leaving us ripe for breaking into "If I Were A Rich Man." Idle deedle didle deedle dum. And okay, throw in the fact that I'm a father to an eight-year-old girl and it's a safe bet I'm gonna get drunk on the bittersweet nectar of "Sunrise, Sunset."
It's just a short snowball ride after that to the Future Projection Festival where the wife and I got to thinking about that day in the not-so-distant future when a boy comes a knockin'.
"Why hello, Mrs. Amaya, and may I say that's a lovely frock you have on."
"Thank you, Eddie. Amy's upstairs. She'll be down in a minute. Would you like a glass of lemonade or something while you wait?"
"Oh, no thank you, ma'am. I'll just wait here on this exquisitely upholstered sofa."
Viv says that day is gonna kill her, she's gonna lose it. Maybe so. I figure she's privy to things that go on in the Girl Mind and can identify with the wonder years of female adolescence, so I let her squish around and kvetch and kvell in it.
Despite the traditional scenario of the boisterous overprotective father scrutinizing boyfriends with a withering eye, I don't believe I'm going to have a problem with Amy going out on dates. I think I'm capable of making it perfectly understandable to any potential suitor that if anything untoward happens with my daughter the punishment is death, a slow painful one, with dismemberment included free of charge. Simple. I may even require a pinky finger as a deposit. I'll do it quietly, maybe even in a whisper.
No, I think what's really gonna wreck me is her high school graduation. With this much time and effort spent on homework and therapy and all the remedial stuff that accessorizes my daughter's life, it goes without saying that when she takes that stroll in cap and gown I'll be turning into jelly. Sometimes I'm almost convinced she'll be in her mid-thirties when it happens, but she's going to do it and I will blubber. Just thinking about it now is lubing the ocular ducts, as we manly men say.
We had a very nice domestic tableau going after Viv got home from work this evening. She and I made supper together, a rare occurrence, actually side by side at the stove making Breakfast For Dinner™, with me on pancakes and Viv on bacon and eggs.
All we could do was talk about how cute Amy was in the next room where she sat in the dark watching Batman while wearing her Batman costume. The girl does get involved. Her spirit these days is so light-hearted. She plays with full intensity, and her kindnesses are so spontaneous and frequent that sometimes I can't help but wonder if it's all part of some overall equation, that her generous good nature is meant to bring a hard life into balance for all of us. It will probably all stop, of course, when we enter the days of boys sitting on the exquisitely upholstered sofa.
So I write this to remind myself in the future that there may never be anything better than bacon and eggs and Batman. This may be the pinnacle. Which would be just fine.
The weekend is almost here and it seems almost surreal not having it planned out. The first free one since what, October?
I may sleep the sleep of the just plain tired.
And dream of hassling teenage boys.
"When You Are Old" -- Roscoe Lee Browne -- MURMURS OF THE HEART
"We find a delight in the beauty and happiness of children that makes the heart too big for the body."
- Ralph Waldo Emerson