My mother never seemed to appreciate some of my early attempts at artistic expression, like running free in a crowded parking lot, putting my face too close to things that were either on fire or boiling, licking all the candy at the freestanding candy kiosk at the mall, or shoving my hands directly into whatever food was placed in the middle of the dinner table even if I had no intention of actually eating it.
There wasn’t a question that my mom couldn’t answer with a pensive, “That’s a tough one.”
“Mom, what does ‘what’ mean?”
“Mom, can I have a pretzel?”
“Mom, who would win in a fight — this pachycephalosaurus or this dragon?”
… “That’s a tough one.”
One of my favorite games to play with my mom was the one where I would act like a seizing banshee while she would try to buckle me into my carseat. You should have seen the expression on her face, her hair hanging in stress-sweat-soaked strands, as I laughed manically. I’d win every time!
I learned early that anything could be a drum, if you hit it hard enough with drum sticks.