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Xian Horn

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Member Since: May, 2004

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Happily Tangled in Big Ol' Blues
By Xian Horn
Monday, May 17, 2004

Rated "PG13" by the Author.

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My dad refuses to call it “Old Blue” anymore. Now that he’s 68, he calls it “Big Blue.” No matter what we call Big Ol Blue, it’s beautiful. We were not the first in the life of Blue, and it had the happy soulfulness of a past charmed life. It had always been well sheltered, for it was a rare breed. As with anything special, it needed to be handled with care, a sweet endangered dolphin with big, light eyes. “1979 6.9 11,000 miles. One of 1500 ever made.” I would parrot as I was taught -much like the Shakespeare I learned at three. My mom hated the color blue thanks to a baby blue car her lovable, charmed life, absent-minded father brought home one day when she was seven. He left his wife and kids soon after. My hero bought beauteous Blue when I was seven. She had seat warmers that warmed more than our bottoms. Even the aroma of her leather was lovely. Blue has the biggest engine Mercedes ever made and I’m sure the biggest heart too. The love I have for wonderful Oldie spills into a smile whenever I see her. I swear she smiles back. Even mom loves Blue. She is not baby blue, after all. When I was seven, my best friend would come over to play. My mom would draw comics of us as career women. When I was seven, my parents’ love was perfect. They were polite, they held hands, and my dad worked late nights with my best friend’s mom. I’d see him ten minutes in the morning, ten minutes at night, the best twenty minutes of the day. When I was eight, he moved out. He told my mom he had to for our safety - he was working for the CIA. He carried a Walther PPK, the Bond gun. I had always seen my father in the light of 007, and my mother as an exotic Asian Bond girl (though I knew nothing of what he had explained to my mother). We still don’t know if that was real. He doesn’t carry a gun anymore. My parents lived apart, but I would still wake up mornings and find him there. These mornings fulfilled my fantasy. Ol’ blue was a fantasy too, a joy ride like the “lascivious pleasing of a lute” in Richard III. Then, ol’ blue “1979 6.9. 11,000 miles. One of 1500 ever made,” moved out to a fancy garage somewhere. Eventually, she was forced into the hands of my best friend’s mother. She drove her secretly. When my mom found out, she threatened to raise hell over alimony. My hero’s pedestal was lower, but there nonetheless. We were driving a beat up, rusty brown 1976 Diesel and that Woman scattered sesame seeds on the dark blue leather of Big Ol’ Blue. Dad let mom snatch blue back - he never meant harm. These days, he was spineless and silent. His pedestal was lower but there nonetheless. Mom drove the returned Blue with a vengeance. Driving blue was a victory of anger. She was a harsh driver for any car. This beauty was not meant for harsh drivers or the city or, perhaps, could not take the trauma of a divorce. The shock absorbers were shot, if we tried to drive her at all, we shook down the streets.
Blue was broken, sat injured and forgotten –her only refuge was a garage. I was eleven then. Over the next three years I lived with dad, my former-best friend and her mother. They planned to marry and though I knew it would never happen, it frightened me. My hero was too spineless and silent. Like God, he knew all and said nothing. Everyone else knew little and said all. But all was always different. I learned a lot this way. Drawing from false-truths, I created for myself an objectivity. Once that Woman was gone, the healing sped along. The awkward phone calls lessened in number and dinner with dad became dinner with dad and mom - if she felt like it. Their new significant others became old and less significant. Soon my parents were bonding over student loans. Soon they had dinners on their own. When I went away to college, dad decided to fix Big Blue. It would cost him 20 thousand and at least six months wait in labor. “Buy a new car with that money” mom and just about everyone said. Only he would think it was worth repair. He - and the optimist in me. It would always be my favorite happy car. $20,000 and many shipped parts later the rare dolphin was perfect again. Dad considered selling it, though it was simply the guilt of decadence that drove him. He wrote an ad fitting for this glowing creation and he was right when he said: “No one is dumb enough to buy this car but me.” We’re all happy he is the only one dumb enough. She is too rare for the masses, perfect for an imperfect and appreciative family. Soon, my parents would drive in Big-not-Old-Blue to the dentist every three weeks, making field trips to Ikea on the way. This time, my mom makes sure to treat her gently. No one is allowed to eat, so no one gets sesame seeds on the dark blue leather seats. On my vacations, I join them. One big happy platonic family in lovely Big-not-Old blue.

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