Friday, December 14, 2007

How I Know My Parents Are Still in Love

Tonight Chup and I headed up to my parents house for a nice dip in the hot tub. We found my mother in her study nook surrounded in books while my father was nowhere to be seen.

The Councilwoman is BYU's only premiere Provo Councilperson to claim current student status. For the past two weeks she has been UP TO HERE in presentations, papers, tests and brown-nosing. We've all pitched in to help her out. One evening I went to the grocery store and personally boxed up three dozen holiday-sprinkled-delightfully-glazed donuts for her class presentation the next morning at seven pm.

"College kids love donuts. So do professors." She reminded me.

Such behavior takes me back to my college experience and how all the "mature students" were also the biggest suck ups. Like eighty-year-old Floyd who convinced me to participate in hypnotherapy in his basement for extra credit in our Methods class. I still have chills to this day . . .

The hot tub was at a perfect temperature. There was a slight drizzle of snow in the air and Chup was clearing his sinuses of his Man Cold. I merely dipped my legs in because I didn't want The Chief to over-heat. I think he liked it though, he's been holding a right-sided pow wow ever since. When I felt a little drowsy I thought it best to get exit.

After I was dried and dressed I popped into the kitchen to see my parents at the bar enjoying chicken pot pies.

"Hi Courty." welcomed my Dad. "Can I get you some pie?"

"No thanks Dad." I answered back with my usual kiss on his ample cheek.

"An onion bagel?" He offered.

"No thanks!" I headed to the couch.

"A Fresca?"

"Um, nope!"

"A macaroon?"

"Only if you made it yourself. From scratch." I thought I'd be safe on this one.

"I did make it myself!" He said getting up from his stool.

"No you didn't honey. . ." said The Councilwoman.

"I did too!" He replied coming near to me with an obvious store-bought container of macaroons. "Your mom never believes me." He winked and handed me his offering.

"Need some lemonade to wash that down?"


I had a courtesy bite of the macaroon and tried feeding it to Nan the dog who may or may not be also pregnant.

Moments later Dad was back in the room peeling a tangerine.


I can never deny a tangerine. So a peeled half was thrown over in my direction.

Dad reclined on the couch next to mine and The Councilwoman extended her break long enough to turn on Jeopardy!

"Sorry to hear about Alex Tribek's heart attack." I consoled The Councilwoman, "I know he is your boyfriend."

Alex Tribek and Andy Pettite. One has a heart attack, the other is charged with steroid use, on the same day. It could've killed my mother.

"It was only a minor heart attack." She corrected in a positive tone.

"Who is Mom's boyfriend? I mean, Who had a heart attack?" Dad asked like he is hard of hearing.

Chup arrived with wet hair and started to answer the "answers" before Tribek can finish reading them to the contestants.

"Who is Jackie Robinson?"

"Wow!" Dad exclaimed at his son-in-law.


"Oh boy! You are hot!"

Occasionally The Councilwoman and I blurted out a correct "question."

"What is a Swan Dive?"

Dad was fixated on Chup's strategy. And continued his praise.


By the time the final question appeared--something about African rivers--I decided to go with the only African river I know, the Nile.

"The Nile!"

"I think Courty is right! I think it is the Nile!" Dad patted his stomach cheerfully.

It was the Congo.

"Could've fooled me!" said Dad shaking his head. "Now! Courty, before you write your next blog I want you to read all about G. I. Gurdjieff."

My dad reads an insane amount of non-fiction books. The books he reads become passions he gains. He read a book about Frank Lloyd Wright and now he is all about spiritual architecture. This usually means that he will be planning a road trip with my mom to go wherever the book takes place.

Falling Water in January?

Before we can even pronounce Gurdjieff, Dad had Chup and me at the computer watching youtube clips of this Armenian-Greek mystic's spiritual dance movement. I was confused. Mom had long since slipped back to her study nook.

"Want a Fresca?" Dad interrupted himself to ask Chup.

I looked at the clock and decided that the short hand was far past where I wanted it to be.

"We've got to go." I said to Chup who is trying to explain to Dad why a cold Fresca is not his preferred beverage.

"Don't go! Cindy! Where did you go? Our guests want to leave and it's so early!" Dad seemed desperate.

This is not normal behavior. The man spends most of his leisure time upstairs in bed reading. He makes only brief appearances when family shows up. I sometimes envy his audacity to anti-socialize when desired.

The Councilwoman always walks us out to our car with bare feet.

"Thanks for playing with Dad tonight. He's been lonely since I've been studying so much lately. I think he really misses me."

I believe her. I mean, I've never even known my father to make home-made-store-bought macaroons before.

He must be really jonesing for his girl.