Coming home in the middle of a day this dark feels like a violation. The items strewn about the floor, the half-eaten breakfast on the table, the blanket falling off the sofa -- they do not want me here. Even the cats are hiding, though when I returned from the bedroom just now I heard the tinkle of a collar. But that's all the greeting I received.
I'd like to think that it was the mirror or a thought that leapt from one mind to another like radio waves in the night. I could be wrong, though, not only about what set it in motion, but whether it will come at all.
Last night at dinner, Skylar started talking about how we all have hair on our bodies, even though it can be very hard to see. "That's because we used to be apes," she explained. Walking over to my side of the table, she looked down at my arm and gave it a soft touch. "You have lots of hair, dad." Kim rose to the challenge. "That's because men are more like apes than women." Strangely, I found the resulting vision of myself as a gorilla comforting. Maybe it's because I was so pleased to learn that Skylar is being taught the theory of evolution in her kindergarten class. You never know these days. I'm so grateful she was readmitted to Manzanita for first grade. It's a traditional school, to be sure, but its traditions are those of my own childhood, when creationists were consigned to the ridicule of Inherit the Wind.
Generally speaking, I favor the direct approach. Something like, "Do you want to ______ ." But I'll make an exception for the drooling Slovenian any day. There's nothing like a little intellectual lubricant.