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Stripes, a Girl, and a Hungry Girl

F: Daddy, why did Papa paint that girl on the side of the car?
D (turning the other car off): What did you say, Fisher?
F (pointing): Why did Papa put that girl on the side of the BMW?

D (turning to look): You think that looks like a girl?
F: Uh huh. What do you think it looks like?
D: Um, racing stripes maybe?
F: Oh. I don’t think so. I think it looks like a girl.
D: Interesting.

Pause.

F: Actually, Daddy, you are right. I think it’s just uh, er, eh racing stripes. But, why did Papa paint those racing stripes on the BMW?
D: He didn’t. He ran into a pole and scraped along it. The paint from the pole came off on the BMW. It only looks like racing stripes.
F: Oh. You are right, Daddy. It does look like racing stripes, but I don’t know why Papa did that.
D: He didn’t mean to.
F: Oh. (Pause.) Daddy, what are racing stripes?
D: Fisher, you are sure that I am right, but you don’t know what racing stripes are?
F (smiling): Uh huh.
D: Well, what if I said that now I think it looks like a girl?
F (taking Daddy’s hand): Um, I don’t know.
D (squeezing his hand before turning back to Cory): Racing stripes are stripes that people put on the cars that they race to make them look fast, to make them look cool.
F: Oh. Well, I don’t think those stripes make the er, eh, uh BMW look faster. No, I don’t think so. (After a long pause, to himself, as Daddy helps Cory down from the suburban…) Actually, I think those colors look more like a girl.

Daddy studies the scrapes a little more and just doesn’t see it.

D (catching up to Fisher and ruffling his hair): Interesting. Where I see racing stripes, you see a girl. Cory, what do you see?
C: Where?
D: On the side of the BMW?
C: Scrapes. Papa said that he just hit something and he, like, ran the car along it, so the color from the…(gesturing)…thing-y came off on the car.
D: I know, but Fisher thinks it looks like a girl. I say, racing stripes. What do you say?
C (shrugging as she pushes the door open): I say, I’m hungry.

Sometimes a reindeer doesn’t even want to play in any of the games.

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