Normal People

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Why can’t you write about normal people; why does have everything have to be crazy with you?

I don’t write about things I know little about.

Just try, ok? For me?

So…


I am sorry but there is something wrong with you if you have to see the bad in everything.

Um, I don’t recall having many, if any conversations with you. I exchange passing expressions with you on the way to the shop in the morning. Just because I have a scowl for every celebrity you paraphrase means I don”t like universal voices. It says nothing about me to you.

Well, what do you want to know, the name of my first grade teacher, my…

Stop it. You are boring me.

No, man…

Shut the fuck up and listen to me, junior. I took this job because I need work. The boss seems ok with my work. I try to keep to myself, don’t bother a damn soul but for some reason I have your attention. All I want is for you to cool off with me, alright? You think you can handle that?

Yer lucky I’m…

Yeah, yeah, yeah. The macho man bit. If I let you entertain me with it just this once, you promise not to pitch it to me again?

Narcisstic snear and silent shake of the head while eyeballing the other. Doesn’t know what to do as he turns and walks to his work bench but his brain will explode thinking of ways to return repartee to that motherfucker Josephson at lunch hour.

Yeah. That was what I was thinking when my little boy asked me, “Dad, what’s it like where you work? Mom says you’re a loser for not taking that foreman’s job.”

That’s why she’s living with the foreman.

Why’d ya quit that job, Dad. How djia get another one?

You may not believe it son, by once in a while your old dad gets lucky.

That ain’t what uncle Charlie thinks.

Yeah, I know. Or Aunt Lacie, or cousin Brit.

Do you ever see them?

Who, Lacie and Brit?

Mom says they are no good.

No worse than her I suppose. Anyway, you want to go on the rollercoaster?

Nah.

Well, what do you want to do? We can go to the zoo, throw the ball around, maybe go to the movies?

You don’t have any money to do the things I want to do, Dad. I want to go to the races with Jimmy Taylor next weekend.

I lost 25 on APPL gained 20 on MSFT lost 18 on GE lost 22 on that one solar stock and lost 75 on that one biofuels gamble. I look at my kid and see me as a child blaming my parents for the things that I don’t have that other kids do. But then I would feel sorry for my parents because I knew they always worked hard to provide. They had nothing to begin with; no inheritance, no insurance policy payouts, death in the family money, lottery ticket winnings or priceless antiques bought at a garage sale. No family wealth, land or inherited property with which to procure financing all of life’s needs. No privileged status that allowed me to pay off my student loans despite having a job with the same pay grade as that one doofuss with the family wealth who paid off his student loans.

Dad, dad!

Huh?

Look at that squirrel in the tree.

The squirrel jumped from the branches of the maple tree onto the top of a scrub oak which teetered over from the weight. Then the squirrel leaped onto a bird feeder that was hanging from a piano wire that had been stretched between two wood posts placed in the ground about ten feet apart.

Aha! That squirrel is you dad.

Why?

Ownt know. Can I go home now, Dad?

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