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A Very Little Bit Rock ‘n’ Roll

The twins are supposed to come to camp dressed in a Rock ’n’ Roll theme.

C: Daddy, what could I wear?
D: Um… (One of the few unattractive parts of Papa might just be a touch country, but neither Daddy nor Papa is a little bit rock ’n’ roll.) I don’t know. We’ll have to think about that.

A last-minute morning rush ends with the twins back in their 1950’s getups, Cory by choice, Fisher only after considerable cajoling. (The temperature is expected to climb to around 90 degrees, so, in his defense, a black leather jacket isn’t all that appealing.)

D (behind the camera, out front, for a picture): Now, guys, try to look at least a little bit rock ’n’ roll. (Click.) You sort of look 1950s.
F: What should we do?
D: Um…play a guitar…smash a guitar…something like that.
F: But…
C: Oh!

A few minutes later, they are back in position, the ukuleles that Grandma and Grandpa got them a couple of years ago at the ready.

D: Okay, guys, bring it!

Sandy, still in her poodle skirt, wails on her uke, while blonde Zuko, hair too short to spike, faux-smashes his. It’s the most rock ’n’ roll this house can muster in a pinch.

Pack Frolicking

The whole pack frolics along the coast, Boston briefly rediscovering his youth, Quincy jumping right into, and then out of, and then into, the ocean, Cinder avoiding this weird moving water thing like the plague, Fisher picking up every dead plant or animal newly washed ashore, and Cory pretending to manage the whole affair.

Cory With a “Z”

Cory hums a vaguely familiar tune at the end of the day. She makes her babysitter, Victoria, a big “V” on a piece of paper that also says “I love you, Victoria.” A few minutes later, she hands Daddy a piece of paper with a big “Z” on it.


C: Can you play that song again?
D: Which song?
C (pointing to the paper): The one with the “z.”

She tries to sing it.

D (thinking back on possibly the gayest morning ever): Oh, that one.

Not so random. The twins have made some new friends at their first camp. Daddy keeps messing up their names, sometimes intentionally, other times un.

D (earlier that day at breakfast): So, is Bryan the one who…
F: Not Bryan, Daddy, RY-an.


D: It’s Ryan with an “r,” not Bryan with a “b,” cuz Brian with a “b” goes buh, not ruh.
C (smiling): Sing that again.
D (slow first syllable, fast after that): Iiiiiiiit’s Ryan with an “r,” not Bryan with a “b,” cuz Bryan with a “b” goes buh, not ruh.
C: Did you make that up?
F (racing off after a couple of prunes): I have to go potty!
D: No. It’s a famous song. Do you know who used to love that song?
C: No. Who, Daddy?
D: My mom. She used to love that song. It’s called “Liza with a Z.” It goes like this…it’s Liza with a “z,” not Lisa with an “s,” cuz Lisa with an “s” goes sssss, not zzzz. It’s z instead of s, lie instead of lee, simple as can be, see, Liza!
C (laughing): That’s funny.
D: It’s Ryan with an “r,” not Bryan with a “b,” cuz Bryan with a “b” goes buh, not ruh.
C: Can I hear that song?
D: Sure.

Daddy gets it ready, sits in an office chair, pulls Cory onto his lap, and lip syncs Liza Minnelli’s song, spinning Cory around and around.

D: It does drive you bats to be mis…mis-pro-nounced!

Big finish…ssss not zzz…lie not lee…double up the nn…Li-zaaaaaaaaaaa! The chair spins wildly.

C (laughing and dizzy): Again!!!
D (launching her off his lap): Maybe tonight, Cory Bee. Maybe tonight.
C: Pleeeeease!!!!
D: One morning can only take so much Liza, Cory Bee.

Hey, Mom…you catching this?

Screeching to a Halt

The fun of a jam-packed weekend screeches (literally) to a halt on Monday morning. No, really: literally. It screeched to a halt when Cory literally screeched her way through the last half hour of Monday morning.

Had Daddy not slept so poorly, there might have been enough patience in the house to absorb the fact that she hadn’t either. No such luck. The details are mundane, forgettable: Fisher touching her Legos, Cinder biting her stuffed animals, breakfast having to be eaten, teeth having to be brushed, clothes having to be changed, bed head having to be conquered, sun block having to be applied. The screeching and crying all ends with big hugs outside her classroom.

C: Daddy, I’m sorry. It’s just that I didn’t sleep very well. I’m sorry.
D: Thanks, Cory. I’m sorry, too. Let’s try to do better tomorrow, okay? I love you.
C: Okay. I love you, too. (She sees her friend.) Hi, Chloe!

This first tired and screeching, then quiet and apologetic, girl shakes all of it off in the space of one hot minute. But, Daddy will carry an ugly feeling with him for much of the day. As someone else on Facebook said today: F*ck you, morning.

What Car?

C: Is that the Pacific Ocean, Daddy?
D: Yep.
F: Can we down there?
D: Not now. Don’t get too close, guys. That’s a long drop down.
C (mischievous, jumping up): Daddy, can you take a picture of us jumping over?

Daddy knows it’ll never work but moves their jumping another foot from the cliff’s edge anyway.

D (shooting): NOW do it, guys! High, though! If you get high enough, it’ll look like you are going over. Like Thelma and Louise!
F (through laughter): Like Thelma and Lees!?
D: Yah, without the car!
F: Without the car!? What car?
D: Nevermind.
C: Fisher, keep jumping!
F (jumping): But, what car, Daddy?
lick, click, click. Daddy stops the shoot and points out a nearby tree, good for climbing. Shorter drop if something goes wrong…