Friday, November 14, 2003

My Baby Is A Punk Rocker

Home relatively early today after a fine final Media Literacy class discussing the ends of education-as-media and media-as-education accompanied by about thirty bucks worth of cookies, doughnut holes and Mountain Dew. While Darcie picked up clothes from the laundry before it closed, Willow sat with me in the rocking chair and read Curious George And The Bunny, also known around here as hop hop hop hop. She seemed pretty happy to recognize that George was playing hide-and-seek when he covered his eyes (un...too...thee!), and happier still to be pulled around her hardwood bedroom floor on an extra cloth diaper (wheeeee!). So rewarding to have Darcie walk in on such a gleeful father-daughter moment.

Ironed some pants when Darcie returned, nominally so I could attend the otherwise bland-and-unworthy-of-mention all-school required speaker event tonight (J. C. Watts, black Republican ex-Congressman from Oklahoma). Once I got dressed, however, I found everyone else dressed up, too. Turns out we were going out to dinner, and I didn't even notice, but to be fair, I'm pretty oblivious most of the time; it's why I'm called boyhowdy, as in "hello...howdy...boy, are you even still on this planet?"

The Tavern, the new restaurant in our tiny hardly-a-town, is more subtle, more romantic, more deep reds and candles and less barn and local art than its predecessor. All dolled up and the first ones to arrive, the three of us had a lovely supper: homemade cream of broccoli soup, a caesar side salad starter, half-rare duck breast in raspberry puree; fresh breaded fish and french fries for the baby, though she much preferred the duck, and an excellent london broil for Darcie. Willow said "thank you" to the waitress without prompting as she brought each course, admired the wall-clock (tik tok tik tok!), and talked about the ice cream insistently until it arrived, from which we learned an important parenting lesson: it's better to let the ice cream be a surprise, because pre-toddlers don't really understand "soon."

On the drive home, just for fun, I cranked up the CD for Andrew W.K.'s She's So Beautiful, a song I have grown to love even though it's a bit off-genre for this pop-newgrass-folkie. Suddenly from the backseat came a deedle-deedle-deedle, and a head-thrashing in the rearview mirror. Her arms flew like a go-go girl. We laughed and laughed, but it was no fluke; three minutes in, her head was still rocking back and forth like a toofast metronome, and the smile kept getting wider and wider. When the song ended, she demanded more.

We went home and cranked up the stereo and, still in our formalwear, the three of us thrashed and moshed around the apartment, stopping occasionally to grin at ourselves looking silly in the dress-up alcove mirror, until we were all tired out. Who would have thought that Willow would love Andrew W.K. so much? Sure, she loves to dance, but she's never done it for so long or so hard. My little girl makes me so proud.

posted by boyhowdy | 10:38 PM |

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