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Brief Interviews With Hideous Fathers #1: The Breast Pump

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Men and their interior dialog.

Q:

A: I don’t know. We’re busy. But that’s not an excuse.

Q:

A: “We”  means me and my wife.

Q:

A: First thing monday morning I am going to call and tell them we are coming. I’d call today if I could.

Q:

A: Because I have things to do. More important things, frankly. You don’t want me to start raging on like some dickhead about making money, but in my household… oh look, you did it. You made me sound like a dickhead just by bringing this up.

Q:

A: It’s just the word that came to mind. Christ. Wait. Are you going to analyze that one? Anyway, it’s just a word.

Q:

A: You know what dickhead means in this context.

Q:

A: It means the conundrum of having to deal with the realities of life without 1) becoming irate at the fact you have to deal and 2) getting self righteous about the fact you are dealing. Also, 3) an awareness of the long line of unsympathetic fathers as per movies, books and your friends parents who get all worked up in this way. I mean from the pov of the kid, it’s just awful. You become an angry Charlie Brown parent. Just grown up babbling noise.

Q:

A: Good. Yes. Let’s discuss the Breast Pump. I worry about it. It’s an object that elicits worry. Also, it’s in the trunk of the car. Which means that we are carrying around the worry all the time. It’s not even a metaphor. It’s actually a black box of worry and cost that we carry around in the trunk of the car.

Q:

A: Because it’s Sunday, so they are closed. And this is what always happens. The Breast Pump issue only comes into focus on the weekend. During the week we are either focused on getting the myriad things done that need to be done. Or we are just exhausted. As, per, all parents. And to be clear about this, “getting things done” is residual dickhead speech. I know that. Because what I mean, a big part of what I mean by “getting things done,” is spending meaningful time with your children and absorbing their wondrous take on the world and communicating little enzymes of sturdiness that you get credit for just by existing as their parent. And this “spending time,” is not something that is well reflected in “getting things done.” In fact even the phrase, “spending time,” is pretty crappy, as a phrase. Think about it. “Spending.” How did commerce even come into the picture when you are talking about being with your little children?

A:

Q: But they don’t cost money. They are biology and love. Everything you have to do around them costs money, but they themselves just exist.

A:

Q: Ok on the level of food, sure. But scarcity of food is setting the bar low.

A:

Q: That is a good point. And it reminds me of all the times I forget to give them water at breakfast. Or sometimes even at dinner. I have to remind myself. I am going to, from now on, make a point that everyone has their own glass of water or milk at the table for every meal. And that they drink it.

A:

Q: Well it’s never too late to start. Though it does come back to the breast pump, doesn’t it? If we could only have the foresight to return it during the week we wouldn’t be racking up this awful monthly charge, and then we might also be able to remember to give the kids something to drink. I swear I would get in the car and drive to that hideous suburb right now. But it’s Sunday. And I always resolve to deal with this on the one day that I can do nothing about it. Who can possibly start their week with the number one thing to do being to drive through rush hour traffic and return a breast pump?

I mean, can you really do that first thing Monday morning with all the other imperatives of life and money and work and, you know, stuff, bearing down on you? Not to mention the epic task of getting children dressed and to school without unnecessary fraying of love bonds and losing one’s shit? I mean, who can do that and then go spend 90 minutes returning a breast pump?

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Inspired by, or ripped off from, depending on your mood, a fantastic book.

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Thomas Beller’s Books and Projects - Twitter -  Facebook

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