Wednesday, March 30, 2011


I love my backyard.  I told Majestad the other evening that the more time I spend back there, deep in the JUNDLE, the more I love it.  Could just sit out there reading for hours.  We really haven't had a peaceful place outside to relax since our house in Dallas.  And even that was soured by The Old Yellers, Fat Elvis and The Martini Boys.  Remind me to tell you about all that sometime.  Home Port 2.0 had lots of fine qualities, but going outdoors to watch (and hear) the abominable little Satan-worshiping thugs-in-training ooze past on the sidewalk wasn't one of them.

But la casa nueva's BATYAWD is different.  Very different.  I mean, it's nothing fancy, and we had to dismiss all the servants waving palm fronds and swatting mosquitoes, but we get by.  We're out there all the time, almost year round.  Jack climbs (small) trees, plays in the sandbox, kicks soccer balls, rides his TRAI-CEEDLE and sprays people in unflattering places with the water bottle that I use for fire control while grilling.  Sorry to everybody at the party Saturday night.  My bad.  Looked like we were running an incontinence awareness rally.

If we happen to have left the garage door up, Jack usually finds his way in there and jimmys my car door open.  I've mentioned before that Jack loves to play in the car.  Any car.  He loves to wreck all the switches and levers and buttons so that when I crank up the next morning, the thing acts like the jalopy in Christine.

A favorite activity of mine has been climbing in there with him, dropping the windows, and listening to the radio together while H.M. fixes dinner.  On Monday, in a quarter hour or so we listened to Tom Petty, The Cars, The Stones, and (his first ever, to my knowledge) Conway Twitty.  That's right, Harold Jenkins is alive and well on my watch!  But pretty soon, all the stations went and hit their (seemingly?) synchronized commercial breaks, and I switched it over to the ancient tape player.  Yes, the tape player.  Still works.  I had 1970's Let It Be by The Beatles on tap, one of my favorites.

Jack had been kind of less active than usual, but had still dug out my old yellow flashlight from the glovebox for his mic.  When we hit Paul singing the title track, Jack came over and flopped back in my lap, listening to the entire song without moving.  I did wonder if something was up.  So I asked him, "Do you feel okay?"  "YEH."  "Do you feel sick?"  "UMM... EH."  "Does anything hurt?  "EH.  NAH."  So I let it go.  The music played.

We sat, and I thought, this is absolutely perfect.  Playing records with my  son.  You know, only a few moments are the really special ones, the unscripted ones that stick with you.  There's no second take on those.  Their personal significance is difficult to explain to others.

Jack's cough brings me back from my thoughts.  I look diagonally just in time to see projectile yak explode in a torrent onto my steering wheel.  And he starts... laughing.  Dirty baby.

We clean him (and me and the car) up, and put him on the sofa under the now infamous Masai blanket.  I later see him climb up to the top of the sofa, flip the lights off, head back down to his nest and look at me.  "DOH TO SWEEP," he said.  And he did, until about 7:30 next morning.

So if you ever have the pleasure to fear for your very life and ride in my car, this story will explain the existence of two things there:  (1) the airline yak sacks and (2) the faint, yet unmistakable smell of peaches.

The next morning H.M. asks him what he did yesterday.  He starts cackling, and says, "I FROW UP ON DADDY!"

Dirty.  Rotten.  Baby.

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Anonymous said...

Poor baby! So sorry he hasn't felt well this week! But yes, nothing is better than having YAK smell in the car! Ask Blake!!

Roxanne said...

When my first (a little girl--now way too close to thirteen) was about 10 months old and still ONE with the exersaucer, the Disney version of Tarzan was about to be released. One gorgeous, Saturday afternoon I happened to catch Phil Collins on PBS singing the songs he'd written for the movie. The girl was in the saucer, and I was on the couch folding laundry. Phil was crooning, "You'll be in my heart. . ." and I was all weepy and teary-eyed staring at my beautiful baby girl who--at that very moment--sneezed the most ferocious sneeze of her life replete with streams of unearthly green snot. It was awesome.