Today, we slept in until 7:30. A rare luxury.
We ambled downtown for our town's big 4th of July Parade. I'm not a fan of parades, but I do have to say that I like people watching. Today was no exception.
We sat down next to a couple. She had long gray hair, and was dressed like an aging hippie. He was heavy and bald.
Their daughter was shapely with crooked teeth. She must have been 18, because she was smoking. She wore blue glittery eye shadow that extended to her temples and the rest of her makeup was not applied with any lighter hand. She wore short shorts with a spangly red, white and blue insert running up each leg. Her black barely-there top exposed her pierced belly button with a star and dangling rhinestones. I guess it was supposed to look like a shooting star.
She sat there next to her parents, but every now and again, she'd get up to walk slowly back and forth, swaying her hips. Men and boys passing by on the sidewalk would look. At least one stopped to talk. "I hope you know how fine you look. Really. You are fine." She looked amazed and her mother and she giggled together, shaking their heads at the nerve of some people.
It was then that I realized that the red haired boy sitting on the other side of her was part of their group. No one had spoken to him. No one had looked at him. When the fellow stopped to talk to the innocent and unsuspecting daughter, the red haired boy-man got up and came to her side. He put his arm on her shoulders and she shrugged away, angrily.
He stood there unsure of what to do next. He finally went off to have a cigarette. When he left, the father wished aloud that he would not come back and the little threesome laughed together.
He did come back and he sat down and was ignored for the rest of the parade. He looked miserable.
The mother in me wanted to head after him the next time he left to have a cigarette. The mother in me wanted to say, "Listen, you're not my boy, but I'm going to say what I would say to any of my boys: She might be sexy, but if she treats you like crap, the sex will not make anything any better." I wanted to say, "Hey, you're not my kid, but I'm going to tell you that you are worthy of respect." I wanted to say, "I'm not your mother, but what the hell are you thinking here?"
But I didn't.
I sat there, and I switched back and forth between watching the parade and watching that little scene play out. When they left, the parents walked with their daughter, the three of them laughing together. The young man trailed behind.
I didn't say one word, and you know, it's bothered me all afternoon. I've been working in the garden, and hoping that boy has a plain talking mama.