|Despite rumors to the contrary, The Beaver was a force for good (The Shark can be seen in the background).|
Growing up I had a strong aversion to the mainstream, whatever my fevered brain conceived the mainstream was at any given time.
I could cite a myriad of reasons why I considered myself excluded from some happy center of everything, but this blog is not about giving psychoanalysts smug satisfaction as their research papers on bizarre psychology prove true.
More to the point, I now do my best to regard myself squarely as an average family man, doing stuff with the kids and avoiding mishap and conflict whenever possible.
When we were camping over Memorial Day weekend the rangers and volunteers put on a parade, inviting all parents and kids to decorate their bikes and participate. One of the rangers was dressed as a giant beaver, another as a shark.
My kids were skeptical of participating, as both feared the event was for really little kids. This concern was underscored by The Beaver handing out stickers to really little kids.
I tried cajoling them to be in the parade, my daughter taking me up on the offer to show off her ankle skip ability, my son wanting no part of it.
Why did I push for inclusion in an event that for most of my life would make my skin crawl? I suspect for the reason that there’s a teenager in me laughing his ass off at the establishment’s weirdness with The Beaver and The Shark; or because decorating a bike with crepe paper streamers is always a good idea; or maybe the perversity of being in a parade for average wholesome families, knowing in my heart of hearts I am an imposter.
I really don’t have enough knowledge of self to account for why I do half the things I do. But still, somehow, I had a pretty good time.