This Can’t Be Happening

Two nights ago: My Special Lady Friend, Tara, & I were in the kitchen, making dinner. It was a curious dish concocted with meat & wine & spaghetti. Tara found a video online on how to make these Spaghetti Burgers.

It was suspect!

An entire bottle of red wine had to poured into a pan of thick burger hugging onto bails of spaghetti. Of course, onions & vegetables & seasons were added to it. The wine cooks it all into a sauce that is both delicious & devastating.

An entire bottle of wine, I thought, should not be used in such a manner.

I had to put grave consideration into that thought.

There was a time in my life when I would be taking slugs out of that bottle. Pouring some nice splashes into the pan, then guzzle-guzzling MOST of it for myself. – It would have manifested into a TWO bottle recipe.

But those days are over.

A new, far more terrifying war has started. And, like or not, I have to be on the sidelines.

While Tara & I were having our fun cooking in the kitchen, text messages were coming to from my sister. I try to, at least, check in with her 5 times a week. We starting to bond. After a four-year absence, due to terrible circumstance I wish to not elaborate on in this piece, we are finally getting close.

She was texting about how she & her family had dinner, too. And, normally, her wonderful husband, let’s call him Mr. S__, cooks the meals. I love that about him. I was a house husband for a couple of years, a couple of lifetimes ago.

Anyway, I was brutally informed Mr. S__ had not prepared their dinner. My wonderful & beautiful & smart & INNOCENT niece had cooked dinner. – With her BOYFRIEND!

#hell no!

#ain’t happening!

Now, now. I am a realist.

But I’m also an uncle, albeit distant & foreign & absent from her.

Fourteen years old!

Boyfriend!

Dinner & Movie dates…

What in the hell has happened? During the years of my decline, I never thought I would see family again. It just wasn’t in my cards on how I WASN’T living a life. Now that I’m slowly building EVERYTHING up again, feelings are returning. One of them is fury. Not in the dangerous, explosive way. In the way an uncle should feel when her niece wants a blanket to snuggle up with her “boyfriend.”

NO BLANKETS.

My Special Lady Friend finds the situation funny. My reaction to kids being kids & growing up. And that’s what has me concerned. I know what I was doing at fourteen, and, well, my niece is better than that.

It’s an eggshell walk over Acceptance & Denial, Conservative ideal vs. Liberal advancement on such sensitive subjects. Subject like my niece having a BOYFRIEND. Throw all the philosophical, psychological, sociological, theological – any of the “ogicals” at me, but, at the core of me, I’m still an old-class type of guy.

AND THERE SHALL BE NO BLANKETS!

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