Antony cannot move half of his body. Except for this one “attitude shrug” in his right arm that even his physiology cannot eradicate, he hunches over in the spot they place him in. With his left hand, he gestures with his cane. In certain moods, he calls to mind an age-advanced version of the hyperactive kid I tutored in high school. The link largely is their similarly dark skin and street-smart lingo that I, female offspring of Caucasian suburbia, approach like an ancient form of Chinese. But if Antony had total sovereignty over his faculties, I can imagine having to yell, “Park your tail, and shut up, kiddo!” at him too. The shut-up part, he is already told. “You eat with silver spoons, Miss Princess,” he tells me when I walk in. But today, I am wearing a dress. My hair hangs down my back, and his eyes are soft watching me as I choose a chair near his table. As with the last time I dressed up, he tells me about his daughter. She loves pink. She keeps pink notebooks. She stuffs toy animals into pink school lockers that line her pink bedroom. Before the stroke, he had found the lockers and painted both them and the bedroom, though he hates pink. He calls her “my princess.”


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