Friday, February 29, 2008

Checking on the Space-Time Continuum

Last night my father called me to see how I was doing. This may not seem strange in the world of other normal people, but my father. Does. Not. Call. Ever.

In fact, every time I call home, he immediately hands the phone over to my mom. I didn't even know he had my phone number.

So last night, I'm standing in my kitchen asking him why he was calling, and he said, "I haven't heard from you in a while, and I was just wondering what you were up to."

This from a man whose policy with his children is: Don't Ask. Don't Tell.

This is a policy I am very comfortable with. I've never understood people who felt like they needed to be best friends with their kids. Your kids have friends. They need parents. I like to think that my father feels that he's instilled me with a way to navigate the world and to make my own decisions, and that's why he doesn't need to touch base too often. Or, it could be laziness.

When I used to travel abroad, he used to say, "Just call if something bad happens. If everything's okay, don't bother. So if I don't hear from you, I'll just figure you're having a good time."

This is very unlike Peter's mother, who calls almost every day we're on a vacation, just to make sure that, yes, oxygen is being breathed in and carbon dioxide is, in fact, being expelled we speak.

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