Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Hypno Bedhead's Dictionary Entry of the Day

Hanger-On: noun
Someone who enjoys the fruits of others' labors while contributing none themselves.

Sunday, August 27, 2006


When I was a small boy back in El Salvador I used to watch a kid's variety style show on our channel 2. The hosts were a bunch of clowns, literally, who would do skits between Spanish-dubbed episodes of U.S. cartoons. The name of the show escapes me, as does the name of my favorite clown from it. That guy was the coolest cat in the world as far as I'm concerned.

For my birthday one year, we celebrated at this poncy restaurant with a big outdoor area. Can't remember which birthday, but I was young enough that I still brought invitations for everyone in my class as opposed to my specific friends. Birthdays in El Salvador were a pretty standard affair when I was a kid. Venue, clown, pinata, cake, followed by presents. To my great joy, my father had gotten the clown from the channel 2 show to be at my party.

I don't get along with my father. He has a very narrow idea of what he wants from a son and I'm happy not to oblige. My father wants a son who is a carbon copy of himself in word and deed. A son who would never go against his father's word no matter how wrong it was. So it's a big disappointment to him whenever we meet and he remembers that I'm not him. That's his dream, that's why I'm a junior. My son is supposed to be the third and his the fourth and so on the legacy goes. I joke with my sisters that I'm going to let the future Mrs. name the boys just to spite him.

That's not the only reason I don't get along with him, but it's the one I'm mentioning here.

Now when I think back to that moment when the clown from channel 2 showed up, I get a fat smile on my face. I remember dad got an extra back-breaking hug that day. It was great. The clown guy was great. Probably my favorite birthday from my childhood. Afterwards, once the other kids had left, the clown returned, without the makeup and funny costume. My father reintruduced me to him. I saw that behind it all, he was just an everyday guy and it didn't rob me of the magic of it one bit. Looking back I'm surprised it didn't. That's just what the old man is too I guess, just an everyday guy.

I'm not one for nostalgia, but considering how tempestuous things are between my father and I, it's nice to have a handful of happy memories like this one to remember it's not all bad.

Hypno Bedhead's Dictionary Entry of the Day

Free Advice: noun
Something given as if wanted.

Random Quote

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Overheard on the N-Judah