Submitted by John L. Lincicome.
Children have a way of asking the same thing or repeating something over and over and over again, to the point an adult’s patience is tested. Sometimes it ain’t easy bein’ a kid, or an adult.
“He’s still president, ain’t he?” she announces more like a statement and less like a question. It’s a thing she’s said to me in the mornin’ time for 3 out of every 10 mornin’s lately, and before 45 was 86’d she’d said it daily for the last several years, but she said it more like a funny and less like a question or statement in those not so long ago’s. Not like that now.
The she doin’ the askin’ is my gal. She’s a peach of a human, but she don’t seem to remember that the wretch known as 45 was officially given his walkin’ papers on Inauguration Day. She’s not good at the rememberin’ thing no more, eh? No. Either that or she’s been tryin’ to get my goat 3 out of 10 mornin’s for a while now. I make a quick, mental note not to leave my goat parked and unattended within her reach no more. Just in case, comes to mind.
“No he isn’t” I tell her. The words come out of me and visit somethin’ akin to condescension to my ears, but not hers. She looks a look of confusion at me, then…
She goes on rote memory and says all the silly stuff she said in her not so long ago about the most hated president in the history of these United States of America, almost as if she didn’t hear me tell her 45 had been ushered off the biggest stage in the world just weeks ago like I’ve told her each time she’s said it since Inauguration Day. Doesn’t she know/remember? Is she pullin’ my chain?
When I was a kid in Lakewood the 60’s we didn’t have cable TV. No one did. We all had analog televisions that relied on an antenna of some sort to “receive a signal” that television stations sent out magically through the air. Folks had to have an antenna in order to receive a “picture & sound” to the coveted television(s) in the household. Some folk had a fancy rooftop mounted antenna, other folks had the more simplistic “rabbit ear’ antennas that lived on the top of the television.
In either case if the television wasn’t pickin’ up the station you wanted to watch, someone had to fiddly fart around with the antenna. That meant either getting the ladder out of the garage and settin’ it up at a place that was amiable to getting on the roof and adjustin’ the antenna up there, or fiddly fartin’ around with the rabbit ears on top of the telly. Sometimes a fella could put tin foil on the rabbet ears. In either case it was always a nuisance, and the results were mixed; sometimes those fixes worked, sometimes not.
I listened patiently to her do her rote talky thing about 45 and there came a time like it always does that something akin to the reality of the situation settles in with her and she looks me a look. Looks me the “it’s happening again thing, ain’t it?” the “oh gawd, I forgot all over again didn’t I?” look. The look that tells me she’s mortified that she got it all wrong again. Sometimes she don’t go there no more. The moment passes.
“You want coffee?” she asks, then adds…
“I worked for Starbucks years ago, and I know how to make coffee right” she says. “You want?”
“That’d be nice” I tell her with words and a smile.
She meanders off to the kitchen to make the coffee. She remembers where the coffee filters are and where the coffee is and how to set it all up. She starts the drip coffee maker and then retires unceremoniously to the couch in the living room.
Some time passes, enough for the coffee to brew.
“Is the coffee done?” I ask her as she does her do on the couch.
“Want me to make some?” she asks.
“No, the coffee is done, I’ll go pour you a cup, eh?” I tell her.
Sometimes it’s like her antenna ain’t pickin’ up the signals. The thought that maybe I could make her a hat out of tin foil and just maybe all her troubles and my frustrations would be over, passes through that nonsensical, male, head of mine. Guys are good at fixin’ some things, sometimes we’re better at effin’ things up in the first place. I get to thinkin’ that..
Maybe that tin foil idea of a hat thing wouldn’t be effective, or even funny at all.
“Thanks” she says as I put down a full cup on the coffee table.
“You’re welcome…” I say with my eyes.
Pfft. Damn woman.
John L. Lincicome lives in Tacoma and you can read more Kid Life stories on the You Know Your From Lakewood, WA If… Facebook Page.
The views expressed in this article are the writer’s own.