I think I’ve mentioned on this blog the fact that I, most days, haul a carpool to school filled with delightful elementary school boys. I use the word “delightful” here in its broadest sense, in order to include yelling, cat-calling, fake-swearing, bodily eruptions, poop jokes, gun jokes, penis jokes, fart jokes, farting penis jokes, something about boobies and light-saber-sound-effects. To rescue my thin grip on sanity, I decided a while ago to forgo any crunchy-mama prohibitions I may have had ever in my life regarding screen time and throw a movie into the ole minivan VCR.
(It is, I do believe, a certifiable miracle that the thing still works, as both minivan and VCR are about ten years old. And that thing gets hammered – hot in the summer, absolute zero in the winter, sticky drinks, stray kicks, and, once, projectile vomit. The thing keeps ticking. If it is a miracle, does that qualify my minivan for sainthood? If so, someone should alert the Vatican.)
Anyway, the kids watch movies on their way to school in ten minute increments, and I listen to said movies as I drive. E.T, Apollo 13, Star Wars, Newsies, Cats and Dogs, Galaxy Quest, Diary of a Wimpy Kid, The Dark Crystal, George of the Jungle, and basically whatever else I’m able to pick up at Savers for a quarter. I have become a connosieur of kid-movie sound construction and voice inflection. E.T., for example, is a thing of beauty – communicating more through silence than most films can do in hours of scene-building. The Phantom Menace, on the other hand, while bad to watch, is torture to listen to, and whoever is responsible should be in prison.
Today, they watched Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, or the end of it, anyway. They tumbled out of the car last Friday just as Professor Quirrell was about to remove the turban from his head. They climbed back into the car today shouting turn it on turn it on, despite the fact that they have all read the book and watched the movie approximately nine million times. They were beside themselves with anticipation. I pushed play, rolled into the road, and headed toward school. Here is a transcription of the conversation that ensued in the back seat.
“We’re missing it.”
“You’re missing it.”
“Wait. What movie is this again?”
“Harry looks like he has to fart.”
“HE DOES NOT.”
“You’re squishing me.”
“You’re squishing me.”
“Why do you keep saying that?”
At that very moment, Voldemort, stuck on the back of the doomed professor’s head, instructs Quirrell to take the Sorcerer’s stone from Harry. But when he touches Harry, his hand burns up, thus showing that Voldmort cannot be touched by the boy wizard.
“Harry Potter has the cheese touch.”
The boys nearly peed themselves laughing.
“Now Voldemort has the cheese touch. Lookit him! Cheese toucher.”
“DON’T TOUCH VOLDEMORT HE TOUCHED THE CHEESE.”
“Voldemort smells like a fart. Like cheesy farts.”
“Cheese farts are not as bad as sausage farts. Sausage farts are THE WORST.”
“I’m kinda hungry.”
“Don’t let Voldemort get the Sausager’s Stone.”
“It’s the Sorcerer’s Stone.”
“No. It’s the Sausager’s Stone. IT HAS THE POWER TO TURN MERE METAL INTO SAUSAGE.”
“Quit saying stuff like that. I have to pee.”
“Harry Pee-ter and the Sausager’s Stone.”
“I MEAN IT.”
“If it could make me defeat Voldemort I would totally touch the cheese.”
“You already touched the cheese.”
“I AM VOLDMORT. I AM THE CHEESE. AND THE TOUCH. I AM THE CHEESE TOUCH.”
By the time we reached school, I was weak with laughing. And hunger too, as I had forgotten to have breakfast before I left in the morning. When I got back to the house, I went straight to the fridge to grab something quick before getting to work. A nice, square slice of cheese.