Happy Monkey



Hank: (from the living room) Oh no, Mama!

Me: I am in the bathroom.

Hank: Mama, I need your help!

Me: I need a minute.

Hank: It’s an emergency.

Molly: (singing)

Me: Is something on fire?

Hank: No, but it is dangerous.

Me: Argh! Thirteen seconds, please.

Molly: (chirping happily)

Hank: Okay, but hurry.

Me: Thirteen seconds isn’t hurrying? Where is your papa?

Hank: He went to take the trash down.

Me: (to myself) I just want to pee alone.

Molly: (growling gleefully)

Me: (opening the living room door) What th…

Hank: I told you it was an emergency.

Molly:    conversations with hank


Hank: I can’t reach her.

Me: But can you reach your phone?

Hank: (reaching into his pocket) Yes, but…

Me: Good, then take a picture.

Molly: (dancing) Mommy ha-ppy! Ha-ppy! Ha-ppy?

Me: I’m sure you are happy, my little adventurer.

Hank: (giggling, snapping pictures)

Molly: Ha-ppy!

Me: (giggling) You little monkey.

Molly: (laughing) Ha-ppy Mon-pee! Ha-ppy Mon-pee!

Hank: Did she just say monkey?

Me: New words and new adventures every single day.

Hank: Don’t forget to write this down mama.

Me: Count on it.

Molly: (dancing) Ha-ppy Mon-pee! (laughing)Ha-pee Mon-pee! (blowing kisses)



conversations with hank


Hank: Mama?

Me: (reading) Hum?

Hank: What is that word on the refrigerator? Cloudburst? Did you make it up?

Me: I did not make it up, but I thank you for thinking I was that creative.

Hank: Really? I thought you did because it is the exact word I needed for what happened at school when it just started raining like pouring from a sprinkle.

Me: Cloudburst is the absolute right word for the job. Sometimes those kinds of words already exist and sometime you need to make them up, something that Germans have worked into their language quite nicely. My friend Brian provided that word for you. I have never heard it before in all of my Midwestern American life but Brian is from Wyoming where things like cloudbursts happen regularly. Wyoming is a wild, important place.

Hank: Have you ever been there?

Me: I have not, unfortunately.

Hank: Let’s go there someday.

Me: Let’s.



One of Those Days

conversations with hank

Molly taking out her rage on the sketchpad


Me: (hobbling into the living room) Good morning, chickens!

Molly: Mama!


Me: Hank, your papa is done in the bathroom. It’s your turn.

Molly: (arms wide for a hug) Mama! Papa?

Me: Papa is getting ready, Ms. MaGoo. Hank, did you hear me?

Hank: (absorbed by Gumball)

Me: Hank, did you hear it was your turn in the bathroom?

Papa: (from the other room) Hank! Fix your hair it’s almost time to go.

Hank: (annoyed) Why didn’t anyone tell me?!?

Me: (looking at Molly) We did, didn’t we MaGoo. (whispering) Someone is grumpy today.

Molly (scrambling out of my arms and off the couch)

Hank: (overhearing) I am not grumpy.

Me: Fair enough, Sir Ogre, I stand corrected.

Molly: (following Hank out of the room) Papa?

Pai: Fila (daughter)?

Me: (following Hank into the bathroom) Can I lend a hand?

Hank: No.

Me: (noticing his outfit) Hank, are you wearing a T-shirt under that hoodie?

Hank: (super annoyed) Papa didn’t give me one this morning. (stamping his foot)

Me: (biting the inside of my cheek as to not laugh at the ridiculousness)

Hank: ARGH! (abandoning his hair, unkempt and covered in gel, storming into his bedroom)

Me: (following) Parents are fallible.

Hank: (pissed) I don’t know what that means. (grabbing a T-shirt, angrily)

Me: It means we make mistakes.

Hank: (ripping off his hoodie, while doing so a sparkly ring falls out of his hoodie pocket, reaches down to grab it) It’s Irina’s. She asked me to hold it for her and I forgot to return it yesterday. (shoves ring into his sweatpants pocket and in doing so he realizes that his sweatpants are on backwards)

Me: Um.

Hank: (beyond annoyed kicks off his shoes) Argh! (pulls T-shirt over his head and gel coats the inside of the collar) Ewwwwewwew! Oh man!

Me: This morning isn’t working out well for you is it?

Hank: (hyper frustrated) I NEED SPACE. I NEED TO START ALL OVER.

Me: (walking out of the room, meeting papa and Molly in the hall) He needs…

Pai: I heard him.

Hank: (emerges, slams bedroom door, enters bathroom)

Me: (gesturing to high five)

Pai: (high fives me like a tag-team wrestler before entering the ring, hands me the baby)

Molly: (pointing) Mamo (brother)?

Me: Mano (brother) needs some space. He’s having not the best start to his day.

Hank: (bursts through the bathroom door, crying)

Pai: Let him go. He just wants to be a bit miserable and if we push him it will only get worse.

Hank: (jumps into his lace-less sneakers, grabs a vest, his backpack and lunch bag, opens the apartment door leaving it wide open and calls the elevator)

Me: (calling after him) Are you sure you don’t want a jacket?

Pai: (hand on my shoulder) Leave him be. He’s fine and if he makes one more shitty remark I am going to loose it.

Me: (nodding in agrement)

Molly: Go go go! (trying to make a break for the open door)

Me: Nope, you’re staying with me, MaGoo.

Molly: (bursts into disappointed fits and sobs)

Pai: (computer bag, brief case and jacket slung over his shoulders, kissing us goodbye) There goes the other one.

Me: It’s one of those days. (calling out the door) Bye, Hank. Love you.

Hank: (audible harrumph from the elevator)

Pai: (closing the door behind him)

Molly: PAPA! (positively hysterical, raging into a full blown boneless tantrum)

Me: Good lord, not you too!