Harry, the Undead

Watching You Going to the grocery store is always an adventure. My children have learned this.

After piano lessons on Saturday, the Princess and I stopped at a New Seasons to pick up various things. While there, she fell in love with the idea of a diffuser–tealight in the bottom, water and essential oils in the top–and picked out a lovely gray-silver one. We headed for the checkout, engaged in the sort of cryptic talk that happens when you’ve known someone all their life. All was fairly normal (despite our long-running exploration of a couple manga series themes) until we unloaded the diffuser. “From this side it looks like just a jar,” the Princess said.

“Maybe for a gerbil’s ashes,” I replied, eying it.

And thus, Harry the Undead Hamster was born. The checker overheard us, and picked up the diffuser, examining it critically. “It does look like an urn,” she said, handing it to the bagger. “Doesn’t it?”

“It does!” He turned it around. “Wow. From this side I’m all, how do you even get that open?

By this time the Princess was laughing almost too hard to speak and I was doing my Harry the Undead voice. By the time we left the checkout line we knew Harry was: undead, possibly a gerbil, possibly something else, who had become undead by an accident involving a sorcerer, an Elixir of Life that halfway through the recipe was a very potent poison, and said sorcerer’s hut burning down, trapping Harry in the urn for all eternity. We amused both the checker and the bagger mightily, I wager.

By the time we had driven home, giggling like loons, Harry had evolved into the quasi-sidekick of a long-suffering teenager who kept getting roped into staving off the apocalypse, which Harry would warn her of when she was trying to finish her chemistry homework. And at dinner, we revamped the whole story for the Little Prince’s amusement, complete with Harry voices and laughing so hard we could barely eat OR breathe. “You have GOT to write this down,” the Princess said. Maybe I will.

Parenthood is awesome. Especially when you have an undead, sorcerous hamster around.

  • This made my day. Especially since I’ve been in such a rotten place lately. Thank you for all that you do!

  • martianmooncrab

    please do contiue with Harrys Adventures!

    This was much better than “did you find everything you were looking for today” that most checkers say…

  • Michael Mock

    Write this. I will read it. OMG PLEASE write this.

  • Paul

    That’s hilarious Lilith! It is awesome that you have the kind of relationship with your daughter that you can banter like that – continuously and quickly building a complex detailed story from a single observation. I’m jealous. I’ve only been able to do that a few times in my life even though I enjoy it immensely. It speaks clearly to your superior parenting skills (dreaming, stream of consciousness, high vocabulary facility, fast conceptualization, ability to see the unusual possibilities in the everyday, etc.) – those skills will serve her well in life.

  • barbie doll

    I loved this. I was reminded of some of the trips my daughter and I took to the grocery store. Our stories used to start with the” nobody home ” look on the magazine covers. Another good place to get the other shoppers involved is Costco. We managed to get the entire line involved in guessing how much did the cartful of stuff cost. Great fun. Another good place to start is a one legged, frowsy reindeer that just missed Santa’s crew. Keep up the fun.

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