Look, son, I know I’m not perfect. I know I’ve made mistakes. It’s true: I shouldn’t have kicked your door in because I was tired of having to open it every time to get into your room. I shouldn’t have rooted against your sports teams all those years to “help you build character.” I also shouldn’t have spilled lemonade on the white carpet and then accused you of peeing there. But guess what? At the end of the day, I still put food on the table.

Maybe I shouldn’t have tried to legally change your name to “Pee Pee Boy” after the aforementioned incident, and maybe I shouldn’t have spilled lemonade a second time and pulled the exact same trick. Maybe I shouldn’t have suggested that your mother was probably having a stroke when she smelled lemons instead of urine. But I love lemonade, I have poor coordination, and most importantly? I put food on the table.

And yeah, perhaps refusing to drive my own wife to the hospital after suggesting that she was experiencing a stroke, which caused her to think I was trying to kill her and sent her spiralling into a psychotic episode, was not the right choice, in hindsight. But on the other hand, I hadn’t driven in a while at the time, and I wasn’t going to let this change that. And you’re forgetting one key detail: I put food on the table.

When your mother had to take a break from work due to her breakdown in which she wholeheartedly believed that her own husband was about to let her die, I didn’t find a job myself, but can you guess what I did do? I put food on the table.

Sure, I may not pay for the food. I may not bring ingredients back from the grocery store. I may not cook it. If it’s takeout, I may not even drive to go pick it up. I don’t like driving! But you can be sure that once it’s here, I will move it from wherever it is right onto the goddamn table.

Oh, now you want some napkins too? Go fuck yourself.

—B. Hollander-Bodie

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