jeudi 13 novembre 2008

Dinner is not optional


"Mom, dinner is not optional."

I looked at the hour in the corner of the task bar on the screen, glowing in a room that had been dark for hours. Husband on duty at the hospital, no one to reprimand me for ignoring my motherly duties. Or so I thought. There was my son to remind me.

"Right now, Sam, right now. I promise. What do you want? Chinese? Can you get me the menu?" He sighed, aggrieved.

"Mom? dinner?" I looked again at the time. A half hour had passed.

"Sam? Did you bring me the menu?"

"It's right next to you."

Oh.

They are starting to know us at the Mandarin Chinese in Bonnières. As it was, they weren't doing steamed food anymore.

"Mom? Isn't it time to leave to get the food?" Oh god. Another half hour had past, emailing and IMing at breakneck speed, planning for our Grassroots Inaugural Ball 2009. A ball of our very own for Obama's Internet Army soldiers.

"Yeah, right -- yeah, right now. You come with me." I couldn't face going in. I haven't changed clothes since Sunday.

"Mom, are they closed?" He sounded really aggravated this time.

"Ah -- no. No. Of course not --" They looked really closed. The owner's wife stuck her head out the door of the darkened restaurant, and I pulled a hard right into a parking space near the door, barely breaking. I glanced at the orange digital numbers glowing in the dark. 23:08.

"Mom. They are closed." I have never heard him sound so -- firm.

"Go ahead, go on -- tell them how sorry I am, anything, just apologize. A lot."

"No," he muttered, hauling himself out of the car. I got it. I really did. He felt like I should come in and apologize to the three of them. The owner, his wife, and him. But this was important. This is about history. It isn't happening again.

We didn't get a free treat last night like we usually do. Last time it was a bottle of Tsing Tao.
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