The Mighty Viking

Conquering those things we must, one story at a time

Window Recordings

We here at the Family Compound have had a running joke for years.  Raising kids – especially Special Needs kids – you get many, many opportunities to say things that…well, let’s just say it isn’t always easy to formulate eloquent expressions.  Or graceful expressions.  Or logical, or reasonable, or quite frankly even coherent expressions.

And it is precisely the instant after those expressions when you become weirdly aware, hyper-aware if you will, of every open window in the house, and of the presence of neighbors or passers-by near that lurking security hole: the dreaded Open Window.

And so the running joke is that we hope aloud to others present that no one is running a recorder outside the Open Window.

Window Recordings.

That (so far) mythical extortion tool that would be devastatingly hilarious were these heat-of-the-moment exclamations to get out for public consumption.

“DUSTAN!  PUT PANTS ON BEFORE YOU COME TO THE TABLE!”  Instantly I check to make sure the windows in the room are closed.  I recover from the shock brought about by events necessitating this outburst and lower my voice.

“Dustan, me lad”, I intone in a vague pirately brogue, “Where be your skivvies?”

I always get better results with the pirate brogue.  Or at least a smile.  He reacts badly to loud noises.  But well…I just wasn’t prepared for that.

“Sean!  LET GO OF THE DOG’S LIPS!”

Charlie the Dog has the patience of a saint with Sean, but I sense an impending flood of calls to 5 government agencies including animal control, all originating from a 200 yard radius of Ground Zero.

“TAKE THE WAFFLES OUT OF YOUR BROTHER’S PULL-UP!”

 

The specter of Cold-War recording devices dangling under the eaves dance  in my imagination like box shaped goblins.  These are difficult things to explain out of context.

My children have embraced this traditions well.  They sometimes send me messages when the grandchildren get sideways, laughing about their own “Window Recordings”.

“FOR THE LAST TIME, SKITTLES ARE NOT AMMO FOR YOUR NOSTRIL GUN!”

Followed soon with “NO!  YOU MAY NOT HOLD YOUR NOSE AND BLOW AIR OUT YOUR EARS!  YOU’LL BLOW YOUR EYEBALLS OUT!”

Short silence.

“NO, THAT IS NOT COOL!”

And they report to me how they suddenly had this zen-like awareness of all nature within a square mile of their location.  Every creature that stopped at the noise, every living ear that bent to understand what was happening inside that house.  They could sense all of them, listening.  The Whole of Nature wanted to see a little boy attempt to blow his eyeballs out just to propel a skittle at his little brother.

All of Nature.  Keenly listening.

This evening, the Torch has been passed to yet another generation.  My wee granddaughter walks past me, glances over, and suddenly screeches, “Grandpa!  YOU’RE SITTING ON MY BUTTERFLY!”  And then she regained her composure, came over calmly, tapped my already attentive awareness and said in the most polite voice you’ll ever hear from a 5-year old, “Grandpa,  your butt is on my butterfly!” choking back a snerk of embarrassed amusement at what she had to say.

The circle is complete.  The tradition is set.  I basked in familial unity, contemplating the togetherness of shared laughter at ourselves.  I’ve learned to throw the windows open and sing out with the joyful abandon of a Jester’s Herald.

Maybe…just perhaps, that’s exactly what I am.

 

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3 Responses to “Window Recordings”

  1. Bodie P says:

    OK, this is officially my favorite. Ever. We, too, have those moments. The first one I remember is the day I forgot my kindergartener at school. The school called me. I jumped into the car, raced to the school, and slunk inside to retrieve my child. I found him in the office. He smiled up at me, took my hand, and asked chattily, “So Mom, where the hell were you?”

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