As the latest wave of superinvolved parents delivers its children to college, institutions are building into the day . . . activities meant to speed the separation.
"Are you angry with me?" I ask;
as I ask I hear an unmanly lilt in the
question, not unlike the sound
chimpanzees make when attempting
appeasement of a superior,
I cringe all unwanted, grimacing
into the phone, "No,
"No! NO!!" she says,
before detailing, machine-gun fast,
each unreasonable demand all the anxious
hovering acts and I acknowledge
your honor I am guilty, guilty, guilty,
then a soft percussive sigh
out with the bad father and now
IN with . . . sanity? serenity?
"Okay," I say, "just so long as
I understand the rules,
No texting, no emails;"
sound of her laughter floating
there in the wireless ether she
could be in another dimension
for all I know, but that laugh
grounds me, "Letters," she says,
"handwritten, like we used to do."