I never had the full conversation you will read below and after writing it, I’m glad I didn’t. I did “steal” my brother’s car while he was at work. My other brother, my friend Ed and I did do cookies in the gravel parking lot of the swimming pool and yes, the local police “caught” us. The rest of this nostalgic story is the part that is 100% fact challenged! In other words, it may not have happened exactly like I have written it.
Dad, have I told you lately how great you are? How did work go? Glad to be home?
I peppered my dad with questions to soften him up so that, perhaps, the consequences I might have been called upon to suffer might have been sufferable!
You remember Keith’s car? Funny thing happened today but I suppose you’re too busy to hear about it. Nice talking to you. See you later!
You know, Ed? You like Ed, don’t you? I do too. He’s my best friend. I look up to him as a role model. You know, his mom and dad are divorced but he has managed to hold it together. He’s a really cool friend and you want me to have cool friends, don’t you?
No comment from my dad so I proceeded.
Well, Ed and I, we sort of did something today. Did I mention Ed comes from a broken family and never really had a dad who loved him?
Still no comment.
Before I tell you what I need to tell you, I have to tell you something else. Sometimes, I don’t know why, I have no idea why I do some of the stuff I do but I do.
Too wordy. Might not come through as clearly as I wanted it to.
What do you want this time, Ivan?
It never was, “What can I do for you my son”? Or, “What do you need”? or “How can I help you?” It was always, “What do you want this time, Ivan”?
I knew my chances were slim that I had won my father’s favor so soon in my defense of my actions so I had to deplore another tactic. I had to go for the “sympathy factor”. I was factoring in that if I came across pathetically enough, I might get the sympathy I needed to avoid the punishment I knew I had coming. I began to tremble, just a little for visual effects.
Dad, I think I have a tumor.
You think you have a tumor?
Yeah, I think I have a tumor and sometimes, it makes me….. do stuff.
Stuff? What kind of stuff?
You know, stuff……… Just stuff.
No, I don’t know what kind of stuff you’re talking about.
It’s because I have a tumor.
You already said that you know?
Just where is this tumor?
Um, it’s, it’s… it’s in my head.
I pointed up to my head and slowly rotated my finger in circles. I also looked down to the ground and slightly off to one side.
In your head? Where in your head?
Deep, deep in my head.
Like, inside my mouth!
I opened my mouth just a crack and made my lower lip quiver just a bit. A little spit drooled out of the corner of my mouth and I had to slurp in hard to recover it before I continued.
In your mouth, huh?
Ya, in my mouth.
Where in your mouth? Your tongue? Your cheek? Where?
Um, on my tooth!
On your tooth? You have a tumor on your tooth?
Let’s just have a look at it. Open up and I’ll have a peek at this tumor of yours.
Why can’t I?
Um, because it’s not there. It’s gone. It’s not in my mouth anymore.
It’s gone? What happened to it?
Remember Ed? He knocked it loose last night.
Ed knocked it loose? How did he knock it loose?
He hit me in the mouth.
He did? What happened to the tumor after Ed hit you in the mouth?
I swallowed it.
Slowly nodding his head up and down, almost as if he were trying to understand my explanation, he continued.
So you swallowed your tumor, last night, after Ed knocked it loose? Okay, that means that by now, it should have passed from your stomach and should be real close to your backside right, right?
Ya, I guess so. I mean, maybe.
As your loving father, I feel it is my duty to do my best to see to it that that tumor is removed.
By this time, my dad was loosening his belt like he does when he has eaten too much. I don’t think he had over eaten lately.
But dad, I haven’t even told you what I did. I mean, I haven’t even finished my story.
I’ve heard enough to know that whatever you did, it deserves some kind of justice and I’m here to administer it. Now, what did you do?
Like a knife had been plunged into my belly, I spilled my guts.
Me and Ed took Keith’s car for a spin in the gravel parking lot over at the swimming pool.
Did Ed drive?
Did your older brother give you permission to be anywhere near his car while he was at work?
Do you even have a license?
Then what made you think you could drive Keith’s car?
I don’t know. I guess my tumor.
At that, Dad stopped fiddling with his belt. Was I going to get a reprieve? If I was, it would be the first one ever that I could remember in all of my fourteen long years!
My dad had seemed to be having a hard time saying tumor but I wasn’t about to point that out to him at that time.
I was not going to say anything but then, Dad said it wrong the third time. It was then, that in my infinite wisdom, I felt it was my responsibility to correct him.
It’s tumor, Dad. Tumor.
No, it’s too-moor as in, I was just going to ground you for a day but you have talked me into two more.
Again, fiddling with his belt, my dad felt like he was on a roll.
I think I’ll go have another piece of cake. At least one more, maybe even two more!