Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hannah

Hannah worries about getting a job.  She worries about her father's drinking.  She worries that to keep him, she'll have to give up everything else.

Hannah:  I need a job. 
I have to get a job, I can’t fucking believe it, well I can believe it, but I don’t want to.
My father says not to worry, not yet.  He says we’re not there yet.  He’s not, but I am.  He doesn’t get that worry is almost a superstitious thing with me, like I believe if I worry enough, the bad things won’t happen. 
If I don’t worry enough, then I won’t get to go to college, and I will have to quit the swim team, and I will have to quit babysitting even, because I will have to get a job that I’ll go to every day after school until probably midnight, and then I’ll have to do my homework, and my grades will drop—
But we won’t have to live in our car.  Hell, maybe we’ll still have a car. 
I don’t want to tell my Dad that he shouldn’t have done what he did.  He shouldn’t have kept a cooler of ice and an open bottle of vodka, V-8 Splash and a big red cup in his trunk.  I don’t think that it would be right to criticize him, because he drinks because of me, because of it’s hard to raise a girl on your own and its hard to teach kids all day and then come home to another kid.  It’s hard when your kid doesn’t do the grocery shopping and complains you didn’t leave her money and that’s why there’s nothing to eat for dinner except a box of macaroni and cheese that’s been in the pantry “since your mother died.”
I don’t want to tell him to stop saying these things because then he will get mad and leave and I’ll have no one.
I don’t want to tell him he’s wrong because he’s really the nicest guy deep down and actually I don’t want him to stop drinking because he has to get a break, he works so hard and anyway, he’s nicer when he’s had a few drinks.
It’s never a few.
I’m such a liar!  He always tells me that, that I’m a liar when I tell him I didn’t have Brian over when I was babysitting, and I’m not sleeping with him and I don’t smoke pot and I’m doing the best I can.  He says I’m a liar because I always act like everything’s so hard when I have it so easy, I only have to go to school and—
I’m a liar for saying I have to get a job.
But who’s going to pay to get the lights turned back on?  Who’s going to pay the cable bill for him because he says how’s he going to relax without his TV, and I have some mouth on me and not everyone wants to read a book after a long day and his head hurts so leave him alone—
He should just leave, he says after he’s had six drinks.  He should be able to do what he wants, he’s earned that because he’s been working since he was sixteen and he put himself through college and grad school, and who the fuck do they think they are at that school that they think they can get along without him and who the fuck do I think I am whining about getting a job when I have it so good?
It sounds bad, but I love him, even if he says I’m a liar and I don’t really.  Lie, I mean. 
I love him, and I want him to have his cable and his vodka and everything that will make him happy and make him love me—
And never leave me.


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