Hossmom comes home from another wine and dine of a client. Steak place, always a steak place because when you are trying to build a relationship in business, nothing says I love you like a big piece of meat. Hossmom had a steak because at home we don't have steak much, like ever. And when we do, it's on sale and usually we have fend off the minions who crave the sweet taste of meat. They are my children. However, I do not share my steak, I never share my steak; touch my steak and prepare to battle. If you lose a finger, that's pretty much your fault. This is probably why I am never invited to these client wine and dine events. That and I don't work for Hossmom's company and have nothing to do with advertising. I have offered to take her clients to a strip club though if that is ever required. We all do our part for the family.
Hossmom says the steak was good and the conversation was interesting. She goes on for about 10 minutes about the salad though and how she imagined that at such a high end place that the salad would be better. And the wine was ok and at 15 bucks a glass she thought that she would enjoy it more. But the breadsticks were good. "What about the steak I ask her, any good?" She looks at me, trying to gauge my reaction. She is hesitant to say anything because she knows that my dinner probably consisted of mac and cheese and maybe an extra piece of bologna. It's what the kids want when she is gone and we do dinner without her. I don't do a big extravaganza meals when she's not here. What's the point I ask you? Sure I could make a delicious feta stuffed chicken breast smothered in a tomato basil sauce. Will the kids eat it? Nope, but they will still chow down on the dog food from time to time because they are that high class.
Hossmom breaks down, she can't contain herself. The steak was awesome. Each tender piece that entered her mouth was like a kiss from the gods. The juices that ran clear dabbled on her chin while she made cheesy marketing jokes. For the record, I have listened to these marketing jokes for 15 years. They are not funny, outside the marketing world. Sorry, I just don't think they are funny. I'm sure that jokes about focus groups and product demographics are a god damn riot at marketing departments world wide, but outside of that, please, all of you, stop.
As Hossmom talks about the steak it's almost like she quivers and I'm pretty sure that if our state allowed a meat/human marriage, she would jump all over it. She finishes telling me how good the steak is, almost out of breath. She is a bit flushed and her fingers linger over her mouth. Sadly she looks at me, like remembering some past love and is disappointed that she settled for me, a non-steak. She informs me that she couldn't bring any home. Apparently it's considered bad form in the business world to ask for a doggie bag at an expensive steak restaurant. Telling marketing jokes is apparently fine though.
She touches my hand as she reads my expression, she is sad for me, she is trying to be compassionate. It's almost like I told her my grandmother died and she is trying to console me. She leans to give me a kiss.
She has misread my expression, my body language.
It's not sadness in my eyes that she sees, it is not jealousy.
It is pity. Deep pity for Hossmom, you ignorant bastard.
For tonight, while Hossmom is gone yet again showing clients a good time, and not in a illegal prostitution way as that sounds, I did something special.
I introduced the kids to Star Wars.
Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, the Princess chick in a gold bikini. I showed the kids everything. We made a tent on the floor. We gladly ate our mac and cheese, garnished with parsley to add that gourmet feel, under our tent. And then we started the story that happened a long, long time ago in a galaxy far far away.
While she was listening to marketing jokes and assuring future clients that their concerns where her concerns, the kids and I were rocking the popcorn while we screamed when Darth Vader made his entrance. Everything about this was awesome. I got to explain what the Force was and what a Force choke was. I explained what a Wookie was and we all practiced the Wookie yell. We got our light sabers and did epic battles, leaping from the couch to the chair. Making laser sounds that always seemed to ricochet off the intended target and hit a wall instead.
I showed them the bloopers and in depth stuff like when the storm trooper bangs his head walking into the room for R2D2 and C3PO. And yes, we love the robots. We loved everything about the robots. We loved the blue, we loved the gold, we loved the silliness. There were no marketing jokes told here, the Force does not allow marketing jokes to be told in this world.
And my version of steak? The best steak you have ever tasted? The steak that makes other steaks look like pieces of bile left on the floor by the cats, who are on the dark side of the Force by the way. I had to explain that to the kids.
My steak was the moment when Darth Vader tells Luke that he is Luke's father.
I watched my kids during the scene. They were riveted, they were not moving. They hugged their blankies and sat 2 inches from the screen. And boom, Vader is Luke's father.
Littls Hoss's jaw dropped. She didn't say anything. She whipped her head quickly around and looked at me. She wasn't sure she heard that right, how can Vader be Luke's father? That's not right? Is it?
Bubba Hoss's face crinkled as he tried to process the information. "Father? Like my father?" he seemed to think. Surely not!
If you have never been at that moment when this bombshell is revealed to people who don't know it's coming, especially little kids, it's as amazing as it was the first time you heard it. I highly recommend it, it goes good with a Cartier 1945, a little known winery in the south of France. And mac and cheese.
Once the initial shock was over the questions came in a flood that Noah wouldn't know how to navigate. How is that possible? Is he lying? he must be lying since he is the bad guy and the bad guys always lie. Daddy, daddy, daddy, daddy, daddy, daddy.
This ranks up there as one of my greatest experiences of fatherhood. It took them a full hour to calm down and then jack back up again when they met the Ewoks for the first time. We didn't finish the third movie that night, they fell asleep. It was a big day for their tiny minds to grasp.
That was my steak, that was my moment. And Hossmom missed it as happens when one person has to work a lot.
No Hossmom, it's not sadness you see, it's pity. Pity that your marketing jokes and subpar 20 dollar salad can never compare to Star Wars. Please don't worry about me, I'm right where I want to be, in a blanket tent with mac and cheese and Star Wars.
We went upstairs to go to bed and Hossmom stopped to check in on the kids, who woke up a bit. Hossmom said goodnight to Little Hoss and started to walk away.
"Wait, mom!" Little Hoss said as Hossmom was at the door.
"Yes dear?" Hossmom replied.
"These are not the droids you are looking for." she said as she waved a hand slowly in front of her face. She smiled and put her head back down on her pillow.
The Force is strong with this one.