When I was a tween, I used to spend a lot of time fantasizing about how cool it would be to grow up in somebody else’s family. Why did other kids get to have a fireman or a NASCAR driver for a father? Why were some Moms detectives or supermodels? It was completely unfair! All my dad ever did with me was take me on weekend camping/fishing trips, tell me stories about his boyhood, whittle wooden whistles, throw Frisbees, wrestle on the living room floor, help me catch grasshoppers, make rude noises with his armpit, let me carry his knife and boring stuff like that. My mother was no better. She did humdrum activities with me like tucking me in bed, kissing me, playing Chinese checkers, reading me poetry, showing me how to find Orion and the Big Dipper, blowing my runny nose at 3 a.m. and making pancakes with funny faces and bunny ears on them.
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