I know what is up. And what is down. I know I am hungry, after waking from this four hour nap, forced, but I’m not going to do anything about it. I know it’s the middle of the night and it’s “not worth it.” This is a new kind of typewriter, the laptop, and it is quiet as quiet can be. We have a serious lack of quiet in our lives. Well, in my life. The ceiling fan is causing a racket, for instance. My friend writes to me, you need to come and tells stories in Austin. Yeah, last I told him how little James Bach jumped out my window while I was sitting downstairs at the breakfast table. I was not to have any visitors so early. It was summer, nothing really going on, but it was forbidden. The house was not run like a military base, but more it was overthrown by my emotional mother, and my father, in his head, trying to make sense of it, of her, of just how to manage the situation he landed himself down in. And there was me.
This did not happen, but I can imagine going back now and opening the drawer in the kitchen, dumping all of it out on the the floor – all the silverwear – and walking out. I did, in fact, do these kinds of things, especially as I got older, as an artistic statement, as a matter of protest. I could not put my finger on exactly what I was protesting at the time. These acts went unnoticed for their brilliance. It was more like, why did you do that, why did you do that?
I don’t know! Don’t ask me!
Years and years and years passed. None of that with my family was to last; it was such an unnatural pairing. Even at the time, it just felt so wrong. And high school, the same. Which is why I left, wound up taking the equivelent. Oh, there is something else equivelent? Let me go with that then! Oh, it doesn’t really have the same clout? Oh well, it is all too late.
My mom, she wanted to know what the hell that noise was – upstairs, that quick grind of the window going up. I didn’t know myself, but tried to play it off as nothing important. James, sit here, I told him, and play video games. Later, we will pretend like you didn’t come here super early. Just sit here and play video games. I suspected I was asking for too much and that during pancakes, my best friend’s little brother would take it upon himself to jump from the second floor and implicate me in some serious trouble.
Naw, that’s just the cat. The cat knocked something. I’ll go check.
The cat thing worked. I didn’t bother trying to close the window, causing more racket. She believed it. I learned to tell all kinds of little white lies. I could tell it was turning into a bad habit, but she was irrational and irritable and we had to dance around it…