Big Billy – King for a Day

Last Sunday was Father’s Day, but to tell ya the truth, the day coulda gone a little smoother.

See, it all started on Saturday. Minnie was after me to do three things around the house – Big BIllynone of them big by any stretch, but when ya hear about it a hundred times, it starts to get on your nerves. She wanted the range light on the stove fixed, a new screen for the kitchen window, and she wanted me to glue the leg on one of the kitchen chairs that got a crack on it.

Soon as I got up in the morning, it was a beautiful, sunny day and you could tell it was gonna be a warm one.

Just as I’m sittin’ at the table, rubbin’ the sleep from my eyes and takin’ my first sip of tea, she says right sarcastic – Ohh, it’d be some nice if I could open this kitchen window without a hundred mosquitoes and flies comin’ through the holes in the screen.

I said nothin, just chewed my toast and Cheez Whiz.

Then when she came over with her own cuppa tea, she makes a big deal about walkin’ past her chair and goin’ aaaall the way around to the chair by the window where Little Bill usually sits.

Can’t even sit in my own chair this morning, she says. Unless I wanna land on the floor and get an arse full of splinters. But I guess it’s too much to ask to get that crack in the leg glued back together.

Holy cripes, eh? The part that gets on my nerves is that she’s not really sayin’ any of this to me. She’s just sayin’ out loud “wouldn’t it be nice” if this or that got fixed. She’d get my attention a lot quicker if she’d come right out and say – Billy, will you fix this today?

But no, it starts with talkin’ to the walls. Then she usually moves on to talkin’ to the thing itself. So a couple of hours later, after I found a good movie on TV and came out to get a drink of pop, she starts talkin’ to the window.

Ohhh, I dunno, screen, she says to the kitchen window. It don’t look like you’re gonna get fixed any time soon, does it? Be nice if somebody fixed them holes for ya, but I guess that’s too much to ask, eh?

I ask you, now – which is more mental? Somebody who procrastinates because he’s got a hundred things he’d rather be doin’ than fixin’ a screen. or somebody who has an entire conversation with the screen?

My movie ended just as the Blue Jays game was comin’ on. I guess Minnie was harbourin’ some faint, misguided hope that I’d get off my arse and get to all them chores just as soon as the movie was over. But of course, there’s nothin’ I love more on a sunny afternoon that sittin’ in my chair and watchin’ a baseball game. So that’s what I tried to do.

Now, after talkin’ to the walls, then talkin’ to the thing that needs to be fixed, Minnie’s next stage is to get mad at me for somethin’ else way worse that what you’d expect for whatever it is she’s pretendin’ to be mad at.

So when I made a salami sandwich and left bread crumbs and the mustard bottle all over the counter, she blew up. On and on she went about how much time she spends cleanin’ the house only for me to come along and wreck it, and blah blah blah.

Hey, I said, interruptin’ her, this wouldn’t have anything to do with the screen, or the light in the stove or the chair ya want fixed, would it?

Long story short, I spent pretty much the rest of the day trackin’ down new mesh for the screen and a new light for the stove, and spent hours out in the sun tryin’ to get the damn screen off the window, then tryin’ to get the screen out of the frame, then tryin’ to get the new screen in the frame.

After ten minutes rootin’ around in the baby barn, I gave up and came in.

I don’t got no wood glue, so the chair’ll just have to wait, I said, and I poured a big glass of pop and went in and sat in my chair.

Now, like I say, the next day was Father’s Day. And after the chilly relations between us on Saturday, I didn’t really know what to expect when I woke up. But as soon as I came over the stairs, I could hear Rosie whisper – Here he comes! And then there was a bunch of shufflin’ feet.

When I got to the kitchen, there was a whole big breakfast spread on the table – eggs and sausages and bacon and pancakes and everything.

Happy Father’s Day! the kids said at the same time and gave me a big hug. Even Minnie said Happy Father’s Day and gave me a kiss on the cheek.

Look at this! I said.

It’s the first time I cooked bacon! Rosie said, and Minnie winked at me, because I knew she helped.

There was two presents sittin’ on my chair, so I took a seat in another one. And, of course, that’s when the leg of the chair broke. I fell straight backwards and landed on the floor, but on the way down, my feet shot up in the air and flipped the kitchen table, which caused a whole shower of bacon and breakfasty goodness.

A few minutes later, I’m on the bed, layin’ on my stomach while Minnie comes in to pick the splinters out of my arse.

You forgot to open your presents, she says. This little one is from me.

I get the wrappin’ paper off and wouldn’t ya know it – a bottle of wood glue.

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