There is a good reason why a miniature, slightly broken nutcracker was traveling around with me in my car.
I had planned to sell him, but noticing he wasn’t in perfect condition, left him on the floor by the passenger seat until I could decide what to do with him. I mean, otherwise he looked like a perfectly functional nutcracker, and who was I to judge?
It was right around now--that holiday time of year --when I scooped him up and stood him on the dashboard – a small and timely, if out of place, bit of festive flair.
My teenage son hopped in the car. “What’s this?” motioning to the Nutcracker, came the inevitable question, from he who doubted, questioned or criticized my every move.
Fed up and worn down by always being the defendant undergoing his constant prosecution, I mirrored his tactic by answering his questions with questions of my own – in an attempt at self-preservation: “What does it look like?”
Right then, as I braked for the light, the Nutcracker decided it was time to make his move.
In one perfectly executed flying leap, The Nutcracker landed squarely in my son’s crotch, offering his on-point response to Christopher's question.
“A NUT-cracker! He wants to crack my nuts!” Christopher smirked.
And for one brief, pure moment, the irony pierced the cloud of mother-son strife.
The Nutcracker’s mission was complete. Christopher’s nuts were intact but we were left cracking up.