Friday, May 15, 2015

Fantasy Letters

Beloved Son,
Dad and I are so proud that you've graduated college. We know how hard you've worked for the past four years and are sure that all of those Facebook pictures of you passed out next to a keg or dabbing were simply photoshopped by other less ambitious students who are spiteful and envious of all of your accomplishments. We are sorry too that the Volvo, which was in pristine condition when we gave it to you has been vandalized, probably by these same jealous bastards. Because how else would the cigarette burns in the upholstery and unidentifiable sticky substance on the headliner have gotten there?

We know that what you need now is a bit of time to decompress and regroup. The contractor is coming this week to install in your room, some shelving to accommodate your vinyl record albums and stereo equipment. My hearing is so shot now that Norwegian Death Metal doesn't bother me so much. Crank it up! (or whatever you kids say now). Also, a new mattress has been ordered. Top of the line, so please make sure that you get as much use out of it as you possibly can. Truly, I am in no hurry to create the “woman cave” that I've envisioned for so long. My treadmill, off-season clothing storage area and gift wrapping table can certainly wait. Gosh, I've waited my whole life. What's a few more years?

Daddy and I have gotten into the habit of eating scrambled eggs and sharing an English muffin for dinner but hell, you've been through four years of college food, so I'm stocking up. Despite our vegetarian predilection, I know that you prefer animal protein. I will make sure to prepare plenty of steaks and lamb chops for you. The bonus for me is that the aroma of dead animal on the grill makes me want to puke so I may be finally able to take off that last ten pounds that I've been struggling with.

Also understood is that it will take some time for you to adjust to post college circadian rhythms and we are aware that when you join us at the table for dinner you will just have awakened. Undoubtedly the meal I provide will be more akin to your breakfast and you will require two additional meals and a number of snacks during the time which your father and I are asleep. Therefore, in the freezer you will find the Coolhaus ice cream sandwiches, Trader Joe's taquitos and other items high in sugar and/or sodium. And there's usually a twenty in my desk drawer in case you need a Lucky Boy Burrito or a taco de ceso at three in the morning. If that's not enough, you know where my wallet is.

Your head is still undoubtedly still processing the end of college so it is understandable that sometimes you will microwave an entree and take a few bites and either not like it or forget about it. I totally don't mind cleaning up the kitchen before I rush off to work. Gets my adrenalin revving. You are preoccupied with existential quandaries. I only worry about dying so of course I don't mind refinishing the furniture. I would be insensitive to your angst if I asked you to use a coaster for your IPA.

By the way, we are impressed at how knowledgeable you've become about beer. Enslaved, nearly since birth, by technology, they say that yours is a generation of dilettantes. And to that I can say “Hogwash!” You have used computers as much as any other kid but you demonstrate a remarkable capacity for deep, laser-like focus. I can ask you anything about beer! Just like, what brand shall I have for you in the beverage refrigerator that I've purchased for your bedroom?

When you've sorted through the significance of your college experience a bit more and perhaps start to feel symptoms of the vitamin D deficiency common in those who adhere to a bat-like schedule, you may begin to consider considering a quest for employment. Do not feel pressured! We respect your need for a period of reflection. But should you elect to ponder the thought of working in order to get money, you are correct to believe that any employer who would request such an archaic thing as a resume is certainly not the right fit for you. After all, you have just completed four years of college. There is nothing more that you will ever need to know and anyone who requires a resume to ascertain this is just not worthy of you. Absolutely wait until they find you. After all those ironic Twitter posts and votes at Rotten Tomatoes, of course your brilliance will inevitably be recognized and well rewarded. Do not settle!

With regard to your gasoline credit card and cell phone, I will try not to interfere with your contemplative mode and pester you with silly questions. I will not be bothersome to you and inquire as to the possibility that your gas card has been stolen or your phone hacked. If you spend seventy five dollars at a gas station convenience store it must be for stuff you really need. And I will assume that the forty minute phone call on your bill is for an urgent heart to a heart with a friend who's studying abroad in Mozambique.

Your student loan payments might become due before the end of your spiritual journey. Not to worry!
Like lots of people, Dad and I can donate plasma at the City of Hope! You get to watch cable TV and they give you cookies and juice. Just think! Free entertainment and we'll be able to cut out those English muffins!


Dear Mom,

I know I sound like a broken record but again, I am grateful with every single fiber of my being to you for the sacrifices you made in order for me to attend, despite being voted an excellent value by U.S. News and World Reports, what is nevertheless a private liberal arts college.

Thank you too Mom for entertaining all of the friends I brought to the house. No one minded at all when you pointed out their nose rings and sighed, “I'm sure glad I'm not your mother.” I am aware too that it was not just my black friends who you could not tell apart. And it was totally fine of you to interrogate my guests about their parents' professions, religions, and ages. It's cute how you perk up for doctors and Jews. I understand how comforting it is too for you that there are parents who are even older than you are. And that Sarah in the Bible joke makes me crack up every single time.

I've been offered two jobs, coincidentally both firms are located very close to your house. One pays 75k and the other 60k but they offer more vacation time and a better 401k. What should I do? Of course, I would not make a decision about anything without consulting you and I would never think of not following your advice to the letter. Whichever position I accept, we'll need to set a date for you to go shopping for my new workplace wardrobe. No one else knows what looks good on me.

Things have gotten very serious between me and Sasha. You remember. The one who you made recite the Sch'ma because you were sure that she's a shiksa. She's starting USC Medical School and coincidentally, her parents just bought her a very nice house in Mount Washington. Just a few blocks from your house. We hope you'll be able to help us decorate. And btw, Sasha's parents have a villa in Italy. I think she said something about Woody Allan shooting a film there once, and they say that you guys are welcome to come stay for as long as you want.

The first financial milestone I hope to achieve will be to pay off your mortgage. I know it will take a few years but in the meantime, there is no one on the planet who I would rather spend time with.

Your son


John L. Murphy / "FionnchĂș" said...

Dear Son, as your Mom says: "After all those ironic Twitter posts and votes at Rotten Tomatoes, of course your brilliance will inevitably be recognized and well rewarded. Do not settle!" That could be your hashtag! I know you will do us all proud, and the pets and us count on you for your Herculean labors to clean Augean stables. Love, Dad.

mimi said...