A few years after I was born,
my Dad met a stranger
who was new to our small town.
From the beginning,
Dad was fascinated with this enchanting newcomer
and soon invited him..to live with our family.
The stranger was quickly accepted
and was around from then on.
As I grew up,
I never questioned his place in my family.
In my young mind, he had a special niche.
My parents were complementary instructors:
Mom taught me good from evil,
and Dad taught me to…obey.
But the stranger…
he was our story-teller.
He would keep us spellbound for hours
on end with adventures,mysteries and comedies.
If I wanted to know anything about politics,
history or science, he always knew
the answers about the past,
understood the present and even seemed able
to predict the future!
He took my family to the first major
league ball game.
He made me laugh, and he made me.. cry.
The stranger never stopped talking,
but Dad didn’t seem to mind.
Sometimes, Mom would get up quietly
while the rest of us
were shushing each other to listen
to what he had to say, and she would go
to the kitchen for peace and quiet.
(I wonder now if she ever prayed
for the stranger to leave.)
Dad ruled our household
with certain moral convictions,
but the stranger never felt obligated to honor them.
Profanity, for example,
was not allowed in our home – not from us,
our friends or any visitors.
Our long time visitor, however, got away with
four-letter words that burned my ears and made
my dad squirm and my mother blush.
My Dad didn’t permit the liberal use of alcohol
but the stranger encouraged us to try it
on a regular basis.
He made cigarettes look cool, cigars manly,
and pipes distinguished.
He talked freely (much too freely!) about sex.
His comments were sometimes blatant,
sometimes suggestive,and generally embarrassing..
I now know that my early concepts
about relationships were influenced
strongly by the stranger.
Time after time, he opposed the values
of my parents, yet he was seldom rebuked…
And NEVER asked to leave.
More than fifty years have passed
since the stranger moved in with our family.
He has blended right in and is not nearly
as fascinating as he was at first.
Still, if you could walk into my parents’ den today,
you would still find him sitting
over in his corner,
waiting for someone to listen
to him talk and watch him draw his pictures.
We just call him ‘TV.’
(Note: This should be required
reading for every household!)
He has a wife now….we call her ‘Computer.’
Their first child is… «Mobile Phone».
Second child… «I Pod «
And JUST BORN WAS a Grandchild:
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