Wednesday, March 06, 2013

Company Is Coming

Preparing the house for a new family member has been an interesting process. It's like prepping for Company on a very large scale.

I know about Company because every month as a child my grandparents would come up from Macon to visit us in Atlanta.

This was a big time. Company was coming. This monthly visit is why I still love Twizzlers and $20 bills and cheap pocketknives and raw oysters.

The preparation was largely carried out by Mom who readied the Ewing Manse 10 days in advance through hysterical fits of cleaning and food preparation.

One day after being pressed into service I asked her: "Mom, this is your Mom coming to visit, not the President. Why am I having to vacuum the den crossways, then longways, then crossways instead of just longways?"

"Because, even as an adult, you want your parents to see that you are doing a good job of managing a household and that they taught you well; and that you are keeping to a very high standard" she said.

"But we don't live like this. This is a lie. If you open that closet right there, the junk that falls out will kill you. We are lying to Gma." I replied, with my trademark rapier wit and candor.

She arched a well-floured eyebrow and from there I cleaned the toilets and the silver and ended up in the yard laying bales of pinestraw.

So, I know all about getting ready for Company.

Getting ready for this kid is like that - Company, except that you don't know who is coming, what they want, what they're like, or if you're really going to want them to hang around for long.

Bringing a new Ewing into the world has already been expensive in terms of work and time in the form of renovations, kid gear, and some kind of French “gliding chair” that I will “need”; not to mention a walking science experiment for a wife, and untold amounts of weird stretchy clothes (for her). That's plenty of work on behalf of a person I'm not even sure I like yet....

Early on, I suggested that all the “decorating” work seemed a bit much for an entity whose eyes won't even focus until late 2013: (maybe longer if there's a wonky-eye situation). That input has been largely ignored.

I can only hope he is very, very good at fishing or handing me tools, or capitalist philosophy, or impersonations; because I can always use a travel partner with those skills.

I contributed a Hartmann’s Mountain Zebra skin for the nursery floor - a huge victory; but he only fits the room with his head under a couch - so instead of a regal creature adorning my manly child-room, I have what appears to be a very flat, striped horse attempting to hide under a wicker daybed, and the start of an ulcer. That’s where your mind bleeds, right?

All the preparations aside, the very upsetting thing about what's coming is this: to really warp a kid all you have to do is say the wrong thing at just the right time. 

.....Until now I'd considered that my best skill.