The other day Ed told me he wanted some privacy at my place. A little get together, he said. A summer thing for him and some friends. I was going to be in the city for the day and early evening, so I told him he could have all the privacy he wanted, and that I'd see him eight-ish.
I hope that's late enough, he said. Could you text me before you leave, so I'll have an hour of lead time.
I did this, and got a text back immediately.
THEY JUST GOT HERE. TAKE YOUR TIME COMING HOME.
Driving slow and safe, and arrived in Cobourg about an hour and a half later. I parked around the corner from my place and asked if I could come home yet.
NO, he texted back. WE'RE STILL AT IT.
I asked what they were doing.
I CAN'T TELL YOU.
I told him okay, parked, and went to Kelly's. One good thing about small towns is that there is no shortage of friendly local bars. Everyone at Kelly's was interested in my situation.
Kicked out by the kid, eh? said a lady with a neck tattoo. You'll find peanut butter on the ceiling when you get home.
Oh yeah. He's having a party, depend on it. Peanut butter everywhere.
Her tattoo was a snake. It wriggled when she swallowed.
YOU DONE YET? I texted Ed.
NO! 5 MINS! he texted back.
I finished my beer nervously, thinking of him armed with a jar of Kraft crunchy. I texted that I was on my way. AND WHAT IS PEANUT BUTTER SIT'N? I added.
WHAT? he texted back.
NOTHING. C U SOON.
I heard the noise from the street outside. Giggles, screams. I pushed open my door and went upstairs, calling out in a loud voice. I did NOT want to interrupt anything.
There was a gaggle of girls on the upstairs landing, all variations on a theme of blonde, bouncy, long-nailed and flip flopped. They pointed down the hall.
What is it? I asked.
Check out what we did to Ed, said the blondest and giggliest.
Now do you see why I wanted privacy? he said.
Well well well, I said.
My boy was sporting the shortest haircut I had ever seen that was still a haircut and not a head shave. It made him look -- my heart turned over -- old. (Old for 17 that is.) Three of his friends had had it done too. I congratulated them all, and told them it was a fine way to start the summer. Shortly afterwards they all left in a group, still giggling. A super cute picture.
The only peanut butter in the place is in the jar. But for the last couple days I have been coming across tufts of hair. Not on the ceiling, maybe, but everywhere else.