Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Teaching His Bird to Fly

"Will someone please put on a pair of friggin pants!"

Poor Mom, one neat lady in a house with three male slobs.

Dad, Rory and I lived in our underwear once we were inside our apartment. Only company got Dad to put on slacks, and Rory and I would only put dungarees on if it was someone outside our immediate family. Grandparents, Aunts & Uncles got the briefs. Dad wore boxers, "Like to give my boys room," he'd tell us when Mom was outside earshot.
We spent five hours a night in front of the TV together. Mom on the couch, Rory and me with Mom, or lying on the floor, and Dad in his chair where he did his art. Boys spend lots of time inside their underwear usually scratching out of boredom, or just making sure everything is in there. Mom hated this, especially when she thought we were in there too long. Our family nickname for the boy thing was "bird." Went something like this,

"Leave your bird."

"Hands off your bird."

"Stop it with your bird."

One night, when I was six, and Rory, was four years old, I must have been really digging for gold, because Mom went bananas.
"Bob, will you get them to stop. I've had it. They're monkeys, they're not ours, they're monkeys."

Dad, upset Mom was disturbing him, semi-flipped out. "Tommy, get your hands out of there!"

"Leave him alone," Rory said, "He's teaching his bird to fly."

Dad left the room faking a cough, I saw him laughing.

Mom fumed.

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