You both eat in complete silence, not saying much, not thinking much. There are sausages on the table, a full ashtray, a big plate of potato salad and some glasses of beer. You feel somehow better than the other days, but watching your father eating his peas one at a time makes everything harder. You want to ask why in the hell he’s eating his peas one at a time, but you can’t find the will to start this topic. So you both keep your eyes on the screen, chewing, swallowing, watching, swallowing, watching, chewing, and watching. Not long after, you see a man on the screen whose been launched up to 38,900 meters in a capsule attached to a helium balloon. You are somehow excited about this and turn up the volume.
You put yourself desperately in that little capsule, and think about making a playlist or something; you don’t exactly know what you’re thinking about. Something bright, unexpected, fresh.
Your father starts to pay attention, finally, murmurs and mutters to himself:
You take a glance at him and witness how he’s still eating his peas one at a time.
He glances back at you, takes a sip of his beer and again:
‘You know this is bullshit…’
By the time you have a chance to respond, you hear a voice from the TV:
‘Start the cameras, and our guardian angel will take care of you.’
Your father sloshes down the bottle and burbs loudly.
‘If only your mother could see this. She’d say the same. Mankind leaped upon the moon, now they’re jumping back from a capsule. What a disappointment….’
You say nothing and take a sip of your beer, and the man on the TV says:
‘I wish you could see what I can see. Sometimes you have to be up really high to understand how small you are… I’m coming home now…’
‘Yeah, you better should stuntman…’
And without batting your eyelid, you watch his uncontrolled spin in space, no sense of direction, completely homeless for about four minutes.
Your father pops the last pea and stands up, snorts and goes to his bedroom. For the last time you take a look to the TV, and watch this man, dropping his knees and punching the air.