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The Absurd Spirit Of Things

A couple lovely Christmas tales about my kids…


The Boy

As the winter weather-bundled three of us patiently waited, watching the cheerful, cherubic cashier ring through my spicy rum, the older woman attempted to engage my son in some awkward and unsolicited conversation.

“There was a heavy-set, older fella here earlier today, asking about parents who bring their kids to liquor stores,” she said.

Oh really, my son nodded. He remained silent. I could tell that she had made him feel uncomfortable.

“Yah," she continued. "He asked me if the kids were behaving themselves.”

She then raised one eyebrow and smirked as she tried to sell it with body language, but both of my kids weren’t buying.

“If he comes back, I’ll let him know that you both have been well-behaved.”

As soon as I grasped the bottle, up went their waving hands and my kids bee-lined it for the automatic door. I was going to scold the boy for being rude to the pleasant lady, but my son spoke first.

“Oh, I get it,” he chuckled to himself. “She was talking about Santa Claus.”

“Who the heck did you think she was talking about,” my street-wiser daughter asked.

My son, now blushing from both humor and embarrassment replied, “I thought she was talking about some creepy old drunk guy that had wandered in. 'Tis the season. And it is, after all, a liquor store.”


The Girl

She wasn’t happy. It wasn’t anger, just disappointed.

“What’s wrong?” I asked my daughter after she had finished unwrapping her Christmas gifts.

“Santa didn’t bring me what I wanted,” she replied.

“What did you want Santa to bring you?”

With a straight face, she replied, “A mini-guillotine.”

“What do you want with a guillotine?” I asked, now fearing for my safety and convinced I should be sleeping behind a locked door and with one eye open at all times.

“I want to decapitate Barbie dolls. I hate those darn things.”

I shared this story with a friend and she loved it. She then made things worse. My friend suggested that I make it a father-daughter project and that my daughter and I build a mini-guillotine together. Another so-called friend suggested something just as grave, but more disturbing.

I’ve downloaded plans for an easy-build, mini-guillotine design. Construction has already begun.

I’m now searching for, as suggested by my second friend, the design of a compatible construction project that my daughter can pair with her dolly head chopper. However, I think I’ll surprise her (and her brother and the neighbors) and build it myself for her next birthday.

The girl’s going to love her mini-trebuchet.


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