What used to be a physical flipping of the page was a swiping on the iPad. Swipe. Swipe. Just go to sleep, dammit. But for whatever reason, I couldn’t. The clock read 12:07, so, I read. Swipe. Swipe. Then the book got terribly depressing, and though I felt my eyelids finally succumbing to the weight of sleep, gees, how could I end on that note. Swipe. Swipe. 12:36. Oh, good, she becomes a spy…then, slumber.
For how long, an hour? The clock read 1:30 when I next opened my eyes.
What is that noise?
It was your father, lumbering. He was by the window, peeking through the shutters into the night.
“There are kids hanging out outside,” he reported.
“What?” What kids? Our kids? Who? What? When? Where? Why? And sometimes how?
And he dashed off downstairs, any thoughts of caring dwindling with each footstep of his descent. Again, ah, sleep.
…”The cops are here.”
How long was that? How long was he gone? An hour? A minute? I lifted my head up off my pillow, the only thing visible from under the blankets. A gopher out of its hole. “What?”
“I’m telling you, there’s a party across the street. Like, twenty kids. The cops are circling. Is their mom home? They all ran inside…”
I watched him pick up the phone. “What are you doing?” I mumbled.
“What’s their address? I can call the police and tell them where they went…”
The dramatic thud of my face smacking into my pillow was my answer. Off he went back down the stairs only to return…
…an hour later? A minute? A nano-second?
“They’re smoking pot.”
The gopher once again lifted its head.
“The cops are there. I heard them asking this one kid if he’d been smoking…”
I swallowed film. Blinked my eyes into focus. Your father climbed back into bed beside me, pulled the blanket up to his shoulder and rolled over. I would now be talking to a lump.
“So, how much of an old man did you look like peeking out the window?”
“It could have been the older son, you know. He’s what, twenty-two?” Not that that makes it okay. The clock read one forty something. Late for a Monday night on a deadend block in suburbia. But, then again, twenty-two…aren’t you kind of an adult then? It’s not a high school party, it’s, well, twenty-two…
A time when you think you are an adult but oh, baby, do you have a long way to go.
How long till this so-called adulthood kicks in, you ask? Till you’re married? Have kids?
How about when you’re peeking through the window of your house in suburbia calling cops on the very parties that you used to throw.