Pippa arrived home tonight from prep school and immediately began bouncing off the walls like a human cannonball. After she finished chasing Maxwell Perkins around the living room in an effort to hold him, she plopped herself down at the dining room table. The following ensued.
In describing a friend, Pippa said, “She’s from one of the little Spains.” This was then modified, albiet jokingly, as “the one with the mushrooms.”
Later, when she was complaining about how she was the youngest and only non-Asian in her math class, my mother said, “You need to represent your race, Pippa! Caucasian pride!” This was met with a bemused and curious look from my father as he momentarily appeared from behind his New York Times crossword. I just laughed and shook my head.
It’s good to have Pippa home. I’m sure the shenanigans* will continue.
*Pippa just leaned over my shoulder and thought that said “Albanians.”
Tonight, I was raving about Looking for Alaska at the dinner table. (I had just re-read it for the fifth time.)
Me: Dad, you really need to read this! It’s not even that long! Listen to this:
“When adults say, “Teenagers think they are invincible” with that sly stupid smile on their faces, they don’t know how right they are. We need never be hopeless, because we can never be irreparably broken. We think that we are invincible because we are. We cannot be born, and we cannot die. Like all energy, we can only change shapes and sizes and manifestations. They forget that when they get old. They get scared of losing and falling. But that part of us greater than the sum of our parts cannot begin and cannot end, and so it cannot fail” (220).
Isn’t that beautiful? (I wave the book around to get his attention.)
Dad: Ella, I don’t want to read it. I’m reading other things.
Me: Come on, Dad! It’s short and fabulous!
Dad: Like Truman Capote?
Dad and I laugh and high-five, and Mom wonders how she ended up with a man who comes up with quips that quickly.