Witty Wednesday

Household Principles: Lamentations of a Father: Part 4

Complaints and Lamentations
O my children, you are disobedient. For when I tell you what you must do, you argue and dispute hotly even to the littlest detail; and when I do not accede, you cry out, and hit and kick. Yes, and even sometime do you spit, and shout “stupid-head” and other blasphemies, and hit and kick the wall and the molding thereof when you are sent to the corner. And though the law teaches that no one shall be sent to the corner for more minutes than he has years of age, yet I would leave you there all day, so might am I in anger. But upon being sent to the corner you ask straightaway, “Can I come out?” and I reply “No, you may not come out.” And again you ask, and again I give the same reply. But when you ask me again a third time, then you may come out. Here me, O my children for the bills they kill me. I pay and pay again, even to the twelfth time in a year, and yet again they mount higher than before. For our health, that we may be covered, I give six hundred and twenty talents twelve times in a year; but even this covers not the fifteen hundred deductible for each member of the family within a calendar year. And yet for ordinary visits we are still not covered, nor for many medicines, nor for the teeth within our mouths. Guess not at what rage is in my mind, for surely you cannot know. For I will come to you at the first of the month and at the fifteenth of the month with the bills and a great whining and moan. And when the month of taxes comes, I will decry the wrong and unfairness of it, and mourn with wine and ashtrays, and rend my receipts. And you shall remember that I am that I am; before, after, and until you are twenty-one. Here me then, and avoid me in my wrath, O children of me.

(by Ian Frazier, Copyright 1997 by The Atlantic Monthly Company.)

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