Sunday, July 13, 2008

Chimicurri Grand Finale

Went to visit my dad in Southern California for The Fourth.

Charlie got to hang out with his uncle, my cousin, Andy.
I grew up hanging around Andy and his four older brothers. I was the only girl on my dad’s side of the family and of course I was tortured for it.

Let us not forget the time they told me that a serial killer had escaped from the local penitentiary and that the entire Houston Police Force (I was visiting them in Houston) could not find the this homicidal maniac. Three hours later as I lie awake terrified in my bed the door suddenly creaked open. I heard the faint sound of someone walking on the carpet floor. “Tita?” My voice shook in terror? “Tita, is that you?”

And then, Uncle Andy popped out at the foot of my bed with a mask on and a flashlight under his chin yelling, “RARRRRR!”

What kind of mask, you ask? It was a mask of a decrepit old man with a baldhead and white hair. Whoa, as I type this right now, I’m having a major epiphany. What if this terrifying experience is the reason I hate the entire Republican Party?

Anyway, Uncle Andy jumping out with the Dick Cheney mask on was no doubt the scariest frickin’ thing ever.

And, while I don’t like to toot my horn (at least not in front of anyone), clearly I must be a very forgiving person because I drove to California and allowed my precious baby boy to spend time his Uncle Andy. In fact, I encouraged it.

The end result? I think my son put it best when he said, “Mom Can Uncle Andy come and live with us?”

I guarantee you if you ever want to earn the kind of unconditional love from a child that is witnessed in only the most tear-jerking Steven Spielberg films, pay attention.

Their bond was so instantaneous and intense that when Charlie finally had to say goodbye to Uncle Andy, it was like a scene straight out of ET, with Uncle Andy pointing to Charlie’s forehead promising, “I’ll be right here.”

How does one make a kid love them so quickly and so passionately that they are completely willing to trade the progenitors of their life for a chance at a lifetime with a distant relative? Very easily in fact. The answer lies in two things. Fireworks and Farts.

My father makes a little something us Latin’s call Chimucurri, which correct me if I’m wrong, but I think is Spanish for Sacred Flatulence? And after we all smothered several kilos of it over our steak, we just sat there in silence and quietly hugged one another goodbye. Because that’s really what it was, a death sentence.

A couple hours went by and it started to get dark out. The kids were anxious to see the fireworks, so we walked to the place where we annually watch the firework show. A crowd of people gathered in silence while desired explosions burst into night air. As the light from the fireworks briefly illuminated the otherwise dark sky, I glanced over at Uncle Andy only to see what appeared to me a small tear rolling down his cheek. And No. I didn’t get the feeling it was patriotism that was choking him up. Our eyes met and it was as if for a moment in time we had the exact same thought, ‘We need to get the hell outta here…like now.’

Quickly after the grand finale we walked home, Charlie, Uncle Andy and I, our stomachs starting to balloon out from gas pain. And in an attempt to disguise my humanness and preserve my femininity, I pulled the infamous trick ALL girls do. I pretended that I heard something in a distant bush, fifteen yards or so ahead of us. Hark! Is that a stray cat I hear crying in the bushes up ahead? Let me go look! I’m so into animal rescue. Go PETA! And off I went in search of barking spiders.

But, Uncle Andy being far more forthright than I decided to do something that is so inexcusable, so utterly unfair, he’s lucky if he even gets a Christmas card this year from me.

To be honest, Charlie was being a little more than annoying. But, trust me, the punishment he provoked FAR outweighed the severity of his crime.

He kept asking OVER and OVER again, “Is there gonna be any more fireworks!?! Awe Man! I want more fireworks! No Fair! I WANT more fireworks! I WISH I could have MORE fireworks!”

And in the middle of the still warm Southern California street, while my son held onto Uncle Andy’s hand as they walked in the darkness toward my fathers house, one little boys wish came true. It was all, “BA-BOOM!”

Charlie couldn’t hear for three hours after that. Had Uncle Andy not done it so close to his head, maybe it would have spared him the hearing impairment. But, it was a close range shot. Poor kid never had a chance.

My son, now tone deaf, has never been so happy in his life. And ladies Uncle Andy is still single.


womaninawindow said...

Brilliantly funny!

And I'm seeing a political change on the horizon and I'll help! You, me a couple Cheney masks and some flashlights. If we scare enough of 'em while they're young there might just be a future for America.

Sunny said...

Men never grow up.

Susiewearsthepants said...

I confess that I still love fireworks and act like a 12 year old boy on the Fourth. Shame on me. Shame!