My dad went crazy today.
My mom says he’s having a midlife crisis. I dunno, don’t most guys with a midlife crises just get really fat and start tanning a lot? They don’t just start shouting that god spoke to them and they’re a biblical prophet in the middle of Kmart. Whatever it is, he won’t let it go. He keeps getting all these tools and aluminum siding to build a boat. I’d like to see that. The only other thing he’s ever built is my clubhouse, and that thing collapsed after a month.
Mom says we just have to bear it until she can convince him to get help. It’s getting really hard, though, because he keeps introducing himself as the chosen man to my friends, the mailman, even policemen. It’s just embarrassing when he refers to me as the scion of the prophet to impress girls for me, but it gets way worse when he starts trying to get them to come on the boat with him.
He’s started all these new house rules too. He put the recliner on the coffee table and called it his throne and we‘re to never move it under pain of death. It’s right in front of the sofa and it weighs a ton. Mike started crying when he couldn’t watch Tom and Jerry and dad yelled at him for not having faith.
I’m getting really sick of that line. Pissed because he hogged the last of the milk and won’t get off his ass to go to the store? Lack of faith. Ask him to shower because his funk is making the house unlivable? He has higher things in mind. Refuse to bring my friends over so he can shower them with wisdom? I’m ungrateful at the lord’s power.
He’s been getting worse. Mom finally made him sit down with Pastor John, I think that’s what set him off.
I wasn’t there, I took Mikey to the park so if anything went down he wouldn’t have to see. What I gathered after is that dad went apeshit the moment he knew the pastor was in the house. Pastor John tried to talk to him, but he said it was like trying to talk sense into an angry chimp. He went real red in the face and just started throwing shit at the pastor’s head, and at my mom when she went to call the cops. The pastor left and my dad went to squirrel away on his “boat” while mom had a screaming fit. She was sitting at the table with a cup of coffee and a cigarette. She hasn’t smoked since Mike was born.
She got the two of us together and told us daddy might have to go live somewhere else for a while, somewhere quiet where they can figure out what’s wrong with him. I said I hope they have jackets in his size there. Mom just looked really tired and didn’t say anything.
He finally did it. He ruined mom’s birthday.
It was just a little party with her friends from church, a few relatives that live nearby. Mom doesn’t like big, noisy get-togethers, like dad does. Did.
She was wearing this new dress and she made guacamole. It tasted terrible but I was just glad she cheered up enough to do something.
Her birthday was actually going really well, right up until the point my dad stomped across the yard. Everyone gasped. I guess he was a sight if you hadn’t been there for his breakdown. He was wearing, like, five different teeshirts and his pants were all torn to hell. His stink was pretty much a solid wall around him by then. He walked right up to my mom and started screaming in her face and calling her “apostate whore.”
My mom just kind of stood there in her party dress, crying, until he called her worthless for the fourth time and then she ran inside and locked the door after her. I got one of his old golf clubs and went to kneecap him. He kept dancing out of the way, so Uncle Eric got him in a headlock for me. The party was pretty much over by then. Dad got taken away in a police car. He tried to press assault charges against me, but no one would back him up on it so it was just him. Uncle Eric and grandma went to sit with my mom for a while and Mike helped me clean up the party stuff.
My dad wasn’t always such an asshole, was he? I can’t tell if I’m just now noticing, that he’s always been like this, or if it’s just a sudden change. Maybe he was always like this, and I was just oblivious.
Whatever. I just hope he doesn’t come back again.
He’s out on bail. He came by the house to chew out mom, but we were all waiting for him.
My mom said we’re getting a divorce.
He said you can’t do this.
She said I pretty much have to, this is unbearable.
He said you divorce me you’re going to hell, I guarantee you that.
Uncle Eric chimed in at this point and told him to please whip out a defense like that in court, it would make things go so much faster. Dad didn’t have much to say about that, because Uncle Eric’s a big guy and my dad’s a chickenshit. So finally he agreed to it but said he wanted to finish his boat first. Eric said get that eyesore off the lawn and you can do whatever the hell you want with it.
Me and Uncle Eric spent a lot of last night trying to shift it, but the thing weighs a ton. I don’t know how my dad thinks it’ll float, he doesn’t really know anything about building or floatation or stuff like that. I’ve seen three-year-olds make better boats out of modeling clay.
My dad just kept muttering under his breath. I knew that he wouldn’t call uncle Eric names to his face, and right after he left dad went off. My mom calmly waited through all his crap and then told him he’d be living somewhere else from now on.
Dad said but this is my house. My signature’s on the lease.
Mom said mine is too. I want you to go find somewhere else to be crazy and taker your boat with you, I’m not putting up with it any more.
Dad said fine, but he was spending the night in this house. And I guess mom was tired by now because he kept pushing and she finally said yes. But he had to sleep on the couch, he wasn’t coming anywhere near her until he took five baths. I could hear him crying like a little baby from my room. Mikey got up in the middle of the night to get into bed with me so I yelled at him to shut up and let people sleep. He just cried louder, but I think he was forcing it by now. Thank god for headphones. I woke up with System of a Down blasting so loud I didn’t hear the shouting in the yard until I tore them out of my ears.
Mikey threw up sometime in the night. I think it’s mostly just stress from having a nutbar as a dad. My mom was trying to get him to pack his shit while she took Mike to the clinic, said she wanted him gone by dinnertime, understand?
My dad was sulking and muttering under his breath. He went and sat down in the shade of his boat when my mom left, he’s there right now.
I’m worried. He reminds me of that guy, John Lits or List or something like that. He woke up one day, had breakfast, and then shot his whole family. The thing I hear about guys like that is they don’t consider their families as people with their own thoughts and feelings, but part of them, like organs that have to take all their shit. My dad thinks like that. I can tell.
He keeps looking up at the sky now. Beseeching, I think they call it. I wonder if god told him he’s a loon too?
16th?(written on an endpaper torn from a book)
I can’t believe it. I can’t fucking believe it. The old bastard was right.
He must’ve got the jump on me while I had my headphones on, my head still hurts. I woke up on this piece of shit hours ago and still feel like puking. There’s water everywhere and still rising. Mom’s gone. Mikey’s gone. All that I have left in the world is this crazy fucker.
He’s down “below deck” right now. I said he didn’t know boats, right? He really doesn’t. At least he’s got a pump set up as a bailer, but he’s just shoving shit in the cracks like that’ll save us. We’re sitting really low in the water. Every once in a while we bump into something and the whole thing just shudders and stops. I figured out that these were the tops of houses, so we’re about twenty-five, twenty feet above ground.
I’ll never see my mom again. I’ll never see my little brother again. I’ll never see my friends again.
I wonder if dad can even see down there, his boner probably takes up most of the room. Fuck, I’m too tired for this.
I can sit up without puking. He’s fucking lucky that I’m too sick, too sick to help means too sick to beat his ass too. He deserves it. Smug bastard’s been at the front of the ship, just crowing down at people.
I hope it was quick. It probably wasn’t quick enough, though.
We keep going in circles because he doesn’t know how to steer a ship either. I’d go help him, but I don’t feel like getting up just now. I saw the rudder before it went into the water, he built it wrong anyway. We can’t go straight unless we hi to the left to make up for the curve.
goddammit fucking puke again
19th?(inside a dust jacket)
Shoulda known the dumb bastard wouldn’t know how to pack. He took a bunch of food from the refrigerator, didn’t even bring a cooler to keep it in. the lettuce is pretty much slime now, and the cheese is all soft and sweaty. He just keeps saying the lord will provide, and I finally snapped and told him the lord should provide a fucking ball gag for his giant fucking mouth. He just shrugged it off, I guess his ego is still healthy.
Well, either he was right or god is just fucking with us now. Someone’s backpack and a cooler floated near enough to snag with the boat hook. The backpack had a box of crackers that dissolved from the water and half a pack of slim jims. The cooler was full of Frescas. Diet Frescas. I think god thinks you need to lose some weight I said, and he hit me with the boathook. Fucker. He sulked all the way to the other side of the boat and ate all the slim jims. That sure showed me.
he told me I’m supposed to turn over any food I find to him. Yeah fucking right. The idiot doesn’t know shit about rationing, and he thinks the Fresca’s will prevent dehydration. It’s like being stuck on a boat with a three year old.
We’ve been out for a while now and we haven’t seen anyone else, until today.
Which is really weird, because don’t you think that other people would’ve been quick enough? There had to be some people who were near a fishing shop, or one of those army supply places, and grabbed a few inflatable boats and some supplies. Was it really that fast? Fuck, I don’t know.
We found her out by the old water tower. She was clinging to the top and trying to keep her head above water. Dad wanted to just snag her with the boathook because we wouldn’t be able to get close enough because this thing steers like a fucking cow, but I talked him into tying a rope to the cooler and throwing it out to her. It took three tries but we got her.
She’s young. I’d say a few years younger than me. She had this pretty little thin brown face, I couldn’t tell where she was from. She couldn’t speak English, she just kept saying shit in this really rapid fire language like water. She didn’t need to speak English to understand the look my father was giving her, though. He called her Eve and when I tried to push him away he backhanded me like a girl. Fuck, I have to sleep outside and listen to that balding fuck got to town on a little girl. What the hell happened?
????(written on the wrapper from a flat of fig newtons)
It just goes on and on. We sail and sail but there’s just flat nothing. I try talking to her but she just keeps her eyes cast down and won’t respond. I really hope she doesn’t think I condone what that fucker does. He keeps whistling and fiddling with the rigging. He doesn’t know what the hell he’s doing. The sail keeps collapsing because he doesn’t know how boats work. I think I’m getting scurvy, my teeth feel all loose and bloody.
All we get is the shit that floats, all the prepackaged junk food. I haven’t had a solid shit in weeks. I keep telling him the water around us isn’t safe to drink, but he does anyway and he makes her drink too. Bastard. She didn’t do anything to deserve this.
I think of mom down there, floating like a leaf through a drowned city. You’d think there’d be bodies. Drowned people float, don’t they? It’s like the whole world left us to be alone with this asshole. I might deserve it, just a little bit, but I can’t think of what a girl that age would’ve done.
fuck i cant do this fuck shes pregnant FUCK
No date(written on a bit of canvas from a sail)
I did it I’m going to hell and I don’t care do you here me I don’t care she’s free she’s where that fucker can’t touch her anymore.
She was asleep in his bed, he was down below fixing cracks that keep popping up(he’s gonna run out of caulking eventually haha fucker) her belly hasn’t started to show yet. I think she knew what I was there for, she woke up with me looking down on her and she didn’t scream she didn’t even scream, she just looked at me with those big sad eyes and said nothing. I hope it was quick enough.
I’m taking off the fix I made for the rudder he can swim in circles for eternity I hope he gets to spend the rest of eternity alone with no one to tel he’s right, he’ll fucking starve anyway but before that I hope he gets scurvy.
Carved into the wood of the cabin door:
fuck you you hateful fuck how old was she thirteen forteen but you dint care you just stuck it in her how many wives did god promise you bet that was a disappointment I’m going now I’m going to find mom and mikey and we’re going to laugh at you from underwater enjoy being the last man on earth you selfish prick I’m not your organ fuck cant write curves
Scrap of paper on a makeshift rowboat:
Fuck im away, feel so free. I took food with me and I broke the ship and he’s just going to die on his own bastard deserves to be alone. I ate all the food already and drank the water but still no sign of land water just keeps rising maybe this was supposed to happen, maybe he was wrong and the right people are down there. Going into the water, see if I can find them
I hope its quick