Me and Violet are on the couch. She's milkdrunk, slobber glazed all down her little cheeks, and we just now got done watching some Georgia cops chase a tractor trailer cab down the highway. Live. Usually all we get is some crappy soap, but today the tide turned. Sometimes God works in mysterious ways. And to make our afternoon more super-charged there happened to be a living breathing guy on the back of the truck holding on for keeps out in the fast air.
I worked the daddy angle and explained to my bean blossom that she shouldn't ever do that shit. You don't just stand out on the back end of a big rig and ride around. She slurped at some fallen drops on her forearm and peered up at me with baby sparrow eyeballs.
I explained to her that its bonkers out there and that when she gets older she's going to have to make a lot of decisions every few minutes. Many of those can result in trouble, I told her. Kids do things that are silly sometimes, I said. Expect the unexpected. I felt a bit like an ass but I was all shot up with FatherHood. What the hell am I even saying, I wondered to myself. I pointed at the TV: look at this guy, I told her, you think he woke up a few hours ago and had his Captain Crunch guessing he was gonna be on CNN this afternoon getting truck-jacked and driven around like a hound dog on a summer back road?
She blew a spittle bubble and melted my heart. I was getting through. The guy on the back of the truck pulled his ghost colored t-shirt up over his head. The CNN guy pointed this out.
Honey Bunny, I said, you know Mom and Pop love you more than five-hundred heavens and all but you have to understand that out there...out in the streets, out in the crazy world there are manhole covers that blow up out of the sidewalk for no reason and stingrays and black ice. And killer bees. Acid throwers. And Facebook. I was getting all riled up. I get overcome with emotion about Violet and feel so damn helpless.
Violet began to get fidgety; she seemed distracted...as if she had more critical things to do. The state troopers were pulling up in front of the racing rig which was now sporting two exploded tires. Things on the screen began to wind down. I smelled poo. Even here thousands of miles away you could almost feel the cops getting mega-pumped for the uncertain ending. I leaned down toward DiaperTown and caught the whiff from her diaper. Yep.
Down on to the highway the guy on the back of the truck jumped. It was a safe speed now but dude still hit the concrete, spun, and fell on his ass on live TV. He limped to the roadside, cop cars racing by him like he was just some deer. What a day he was having.
Violet started crying a little. You want Poppa to change that diap?, I asked?
Her long eyelashes blinked. Her interest in our TV time had waned. The state troopers and sheriffs surrounded the stopped truck in the middle of the highway and began banging on the doors and the hood with balled fists and nightsticks. The truck-jacker was hiding in the cab, scared as hell, I guess. I lifted Violet up into my paint-splattered arms and kissed her nose just as a swarm of law finally pulled the guy down from the rig and wrestled him to the grass. And with that, we headed back towards my peanut's room and all the diapers and the Winnie the Poohs and stuff.