“Thank you, dad, for my life”

A bearded, sailor-looking, man of robust frame is feeding a baby in his pram. They are in front of me at a café. Having finished with the pot of food, he says, “That’s it. Thank you!”.

Is he thanking the baby? Of course not. He is putting words in the baby’s mouth, as is common of parents and pet owners when they project their own qualities onto the “lower” creatures they think they own. He is communicating the morality of the situation and airing that he intends his son to become someone who is thankful to his elders for the “immense” virtue of not leaving him on the roadside to die.

But who is really on the roadside, rotting, and dealing with the sad life he has chosen, enslaved by his wife and abusing little creatures? He.

Looks around. Checks for witnesses. I look at him. He looks down. He knows.

 

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