Armour: Dignity, even whilst wading through pigshit

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I thought perhaps I’d offer up a bit of comedy this week. I’ve proven what a dark and heart-smashing portrait of childhood trauma ARMOUR can be, so why not a laugh or two? The only risk with attempted comedy is you can fall flat on your face. Oh, well. Again, this is far more than six sentences, but for the hoped-for comic effect, I had to include everything I put below.

In a nutshell, Derek Rollins is not the only MC in ARMOUR who has a strained relationship with his father. This week snippet shares Lloyd Tafford’s disdain (understatement of the new millennium) for his own father, Sam Tafford. Setting up the following, Sam has awoken at his usual time of noon, and proceeded to demand eggs and bacon for lunch. His uncomplaining mother, Negdar, prepares it for him, but sin of sins! The salt shaker is empty. Instead of calmly asking someone to fill the shaker, Sam expresses his displeasure in the following “mature” gesture as young Derek observes in amazement:

“Even at his breakneck speed of a lumbering, stumbling, barefooted three miles per hour, I’m mindblown. I just stand there, my mouth agape with wonderment. Surely this must be the eighth wonder of the world! Then the old sod screams with infantile rage as a sticker burrows itself into the tender flesh along the arch of one of his feet. Moment is over. “Goddamnsomebitchnogooddirtybastards!” he spews stupidly. With all of his hungover might, he over-shoulder throws them over the barn, and they land in the muck of the pig sty.
Alas, guess who has the honour of retrieving them?
In spite of my volunteering, Lloyd won’t have it. He doesn’t mind. “Piss on it,” he laughs. As he dons knee high rubbers, I can’t stop snorting with hilarity as Lloyd extricates the glass shakers from the cemented mixture of mud and swine faeces. Grandma, Lisbet, Lilit, Joey, and I double over, our faces red as Lloyd struggles out of the hog pen, Shwop! Shwop! Shwop! “That old potbellied ham belongs right in here!” Lloyd scowls as Nectar helps him over the rails. They take those shakers in and wash them in hot, soapy water.
Sam isn’t even awake upon our return. He’s passed out, right in his fried eggs.
“Dat stupid modder focker,” Grandma Nectar says, loud enough to wake him, but not, her thin lips smiling almost diabolically. I gasp, then snort with cheer at her refusal to let the dozy halfwit worry her anymore. Lilit bursts out laughing, “Dad’s an idiot, huh, Grandma?”
“I just say he is stupid modder focker, no?”
And we all laugh as Lloyd sets the freshly filled salt and pepper shakers next to the old dolt, muttering, “Bon appetit, jackass.”

This song is an old Armenian folk song performed by the legendary Rosemary Clooney. I think it makes for a hilarious contrast for the situation at hand: A lady singing about treats and candies while some poor put upon lad tramps through a pigsty to retrieve shit-caked salt and pepper shakers for his worthless, loathsome father.


6 thoughts on “Armour: Dignity, even whilst wading through pigshit

    1. Lloyd’s Dad (depicted in this snippet) is a hateful, womanising alcoholic who never wanted kids. Derek’s dad is the one who psychologically tormented his son into doing what he should have been doing (parenting). Basically, neither of the “fathers” in this book are likable.


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