Friday, January 06, 2006

I Did Not Believe This Could Happen to Me

But it did.

I met this woman on a holiday abroad, as I sat in the back corner of a university pub, reading Proust and smoking a Gitane. We repaired to the back seat of my Renault Clio whereupon...and, uh, the fact is, I kind of swore I would never post a blog wherein I waxed on the subject of the kid and how neat, or how amazing, I think she is. In my view, it smacks of a gloat, and it drives me mad when I have to listen to people prate on about their child's amazing baby skills: defecating, eating, speaking, not speaking but SIGNING in EU approved symbols, laughing, walking, reading the Aeneid in the original language, &c. I guess I'd like to think I can remain some degree of dignity while being blown away by the geometric expansion of my child's abilities, her charm, her beauty. I would expect any parent to experience this sense of awe in the face of their child. But what the fuck. I got amazed today and I want to type about it.

Some sixteen months into parenting, and after a significant blurring of the line between non- and recreational sex, the first week of this new year has ended. I want for nothing, save a 3 bedroom house in South Van with a prospect over the Fraser Delta, and it need be in my rather measly price range. I want my hair back too, but that's it. Except my growing patch of back hair. I want rid of my back hair and those annoying thigh pimples. That's it.

So, I am in the basement, with mo-wo and e, we have enjoyed our dinners, the foul stench of the litter boxes and of rogue feline urination is somewhat reserved, like a hint of berries in a fine Merlot, I am feeling content in a manner I prefer to avoid. Baby e makes her way toward the drum kit, which has left the house only twice for gigs since her birth, and is lonely because no-one's been kicking its shit out with any regularity (hmm) for some time, so mo-wo, whose abdominal region is rather tellingly spheroidal, asks me to chase after the girl and manage the kit with her. I decline as I have decided to practice the two or three chords I remember on the 12 string Yamaha given to me as a gift by our fearless leader and bass player just in case he calls me up to see if I have been practicing and I would hate to lie and say I had, or to take the direct approach and request that he fuck off and mind his own business, I'm not some rock-god from Winnipeg, I am a short, cynical man, from a warm, moist locale, predisposed geographically, climatologically, and culturally to bong hits and mountain bikes and not to rye, mullets, and major chords, get off my back already, I'm busy, Rockford Files is on, and Angel's in trouble.

So I peck away on the oversized, out-of-tune 1980's model axe, which in my hands is the nerf equivalent of an axe, creating atonal, strangled noises, the sonic equivalent a dry shave with a dull razor, as my beloved spouse maneuvers her way behind the kit, with e up ahead, gives e her sticks (#7 Marimba) and, to my surprise, places her onto the throne without sitting behind her (of course, due to mo-wo's expansionist midsection, it would be physically impossible for them to share) and I watch, stunned, as e tests in sequence the floor tom, the x-hat, the tom, the snare, the hi-hat, the snare, the ride, the crash, and so on (it occurs to me, why mention each piece of the kit, it doesn't matter, the point is to illustrate there appeared to be a method, a sequence, to the approach taken in playing the instrument, and now, given I only held off on noting three further pieces of equipment, with e testing but two of them, this digression, this self-conscious throat-clearing, is now considerably longer than the original description would have been) before playing a beat, several bars, and throwing in a couple of fills, before re-checking each piece of equipment, while staying on the throne unaided (I watched as she clenched her thighs against the cushioned seat as she reached for the far away parts, as if astride a horse, which will NEVER HAPPEN MOM. SELL THE PONY! We won't visit...). In any event, there we were in the basement, amazed by the kid, who takes it all in stride. I feel fortunate. I am fortunate. I query if I must now refer to e with the prefix "Sheila".


Blogger Andrea said...

I think that every good parent thinks their kid is brilliant. She sure sounds like she is.

6:00 a.m.  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I so appreciate your preface to her brilliance because I absolutely abhor people who go on and on about their kid being a genius. I always end up saying things like, "Really? Well, we think Tod-lar may need to get fitted for a helmet, and he'll probably be riding the short bus to school." (I apoligize to anyone who reads this comment and has a child with special needs, but those genuis assholes are so irritating . . . )

Anyway, since she tested them sequentially, I'm sure she has a talent for them!

7:21 a.m.  
Blogger L. said...

Are your neighbors equally thrilled that your tot is a drum prodigy?
At least she`s showing talent at something you can relate to -- my oldest son is a math whiz, and my husband and I are total math idiots. We`re going to have to send the poor kid away to math camp or something, because we can`t relate to this particular skill.

12:24 p.m.  
Blogger fin said...

My mom never thought I was brilliant.

8:16 p.m.  

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