It’s been about three weeks since we were all up on the second floor of the house. It’s 2:40 on a Saturday afternoon. The weather outside is perfect, but we all realize that this perfect combination of sunniness, passing, light breeze, temperature, and humidity are only temporary. Hurricane Sandy is approaching –we are about to face lots of rains and winds.
My brother has decided to try to cut off his own hair for the sake of a cleaner cut instead of that mop of hair he’s been wearing on top of his head. As in each time, he asks me to trim, fix edges, make sure that it all looks good –seems to be my job at this household. Doing this invokes some disgust in me; I am unsure why though. I look at people’s mouths and teeth all day long. Often they are not pretty: yellowing teeth with cavities, old fillings, crowded teeth, toothless smiles, missing teeth.. I remain unaffected by these seemingly horrid sights. By the time we are done, my hands, his entire body, and the shower are all covered in hair.
The vacuum cleaner is working with full force and full might, attempting to suck every hair from his head, body, the sink, the floor, the walls. A cell phone rings. There’s a shouting match in the bathroom. My mother is yelling at him.. the bathroom is mess. He returns a shout. It’s the kind of shout that sets my father off in an instant. Any human shriek or shout over a certain decibel is enough to earn a verbal gesture from him. He bolts out of the kitchen, temporarily ditching his own little moulding project he has been working on since morning and arrives at the scene in the bathroom. He yells back at my brother that if he raises his tone once more, he will be sent out of the house in broad daylight just the way he is: in his underwear and covered in hair from his head.
Meanwhile, the younger one and I are sitting in the living room. Jazz is playing on the TV. All of the noises of the house blend together to form an indistinguishable cacophony, noisy chaos. I’m used to it.. non of this annoys me. This is the soundtrack that I grew up with.