The old guy tells me that the maple syrup at Waffle House is goddamned real, but I don’t believe him. I stare at him so long that my eyes feel disjointed. He is even older since we’ve arrived at the Waffle House. My mom used to like it here, but I never did.
On the way over, we zoomed past the cemetery where my mother was buried.
As the light turned green, he jumped it too fast, almost killing us and swearing at the “mean truck”.
“There are no goddamned green lights in this town,” he says. He hates this place where he lives. I hate seeing him hate it so much.
The old man’s hair reminds me of my mother’s. It’s fine and curly and it falls out all over the place. My mother’s hair, right near the end, reminded me of feathers.
“Pass the goddamned maple syrup, Dad,” I say.
Yesterday, right after our Waffle House excursion, he said, “Let’s try another place.” This evening he says, “Let’s be happy with these goddamned waffles.” His strange ideas bloom in the morning, wilt by dusk.
“I’d just like to see a hummingbird with white wings,” I say.
I have been missing my mother’s anger. Only when I’m at the Waffle House do I miss it less. At least Dad likes the maple syrup, real or not, I tell myself—so not all is lost.