You're just like your father!

It only happened a handful of times, but burned in my brain, is the memory of my frustrated mother screaming at me—standing in front of that damn avocado green refrigerator, at the close of some adolescent argument—that I was acting just like my father. She didn't mean it in a kind way. I'm sure she was having a hard time, and I was probably being an ass, plus I was maybe twelve of thirteen and asserting myself, so that means I was even more of an ass. But at that age the shape of my face and body was changing into a man's, and I evidently began reminding her of well, someone she didn't want to be reminded of. Around that time, she often told me she loved me, but didn't like me. She didn't need to tell me that, I already knew it.

Anyway, when I'm terrified I tend to laugh or smirk, and when I recognize a flaw in another person's logic in an argument my impulse is to pull at it until it breaks off and bleeds. I assume this is what she was talking about, and I somehow got this from my father, although I've not met him.

My son laughs when he's frightened. I'm curious what else about the two of us are similar. There's a danger there, the easy desire to superimpose ideas of yourself on your offspring. Although my wife tells me his and my feet are identical. Whose feet I have I don't know, but my son has mine.

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x zombie mother: a short play

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