A Day in the Life of ‘The Danny’

Bearing Drift writer Andrea Epps has ceded today’s column space to her third baby, Danny.

Hi everybody! My name is Danny Zuko Stephenson- Millar-Epps. Today is my 5th Birthday.

Some people call me a “dog” but I take offense to that. I’m a person with four legs. There is just no room for negotiation on this point.  I wanted to introduce myself and tell you a story about … me!  If momma can write on her lap box, so can I.

My momma (you know her as Andrea) my Bubba Logan, my Sissy Melanie, our Nanny, and I all live together at home, and everyone calls me a momma’s boy because wherever momma is, I am too. We take care of our Nanny; we don’t leave her by herself.

Every morning, momma and I wake up to climb down out of our big, soft feather bed. Sometimes she tells me, “You snored all night!” Well, sometimes she rolls over on me, but I don’t mention it!

We always get up before everyone else between 4:00-6:00 and I usually go back to sleep as soon as momma makes her coffee. I like coffee, too, but I am not allowed to have it. That first hour of the day is “momma’s hour.” As she drinks her coffee, she wakes up and turns on that big box with people talking and a blue and white line with numbers that are always moving along the bottom. Sometimes, she yells at the people box but only during football … or if a dumbass newscaster says something she doesn’t like.

Usually, Sissy is first out the door; she’s gone by 7:00. Nanny and Bubba get up around 9:00 and Bubba is out the door by 10:00. Bubba goes to this place called college, and Sissy is a senior in a school called “high,” whatever that means. Nanny gets up around 9:00, has her coffee and toast (she gives me some, but don’t tell momma), and then takes her morning sleep.

Momma either cleans and vacuums (I bite that vacuum thing every chance I get), works on remodeling the bus, fixes something, or spends time reading and writing for this great site she calls Bearing Drift. I love it when she writes because I can lie on her legs; I put them to sleep for her because I love her very much.

Nanny gets up to eat three or four times during the day. Sometimes she either plays with that big ball of yarn (hey, no one told me that it wasn’t a toy for me) with two sharp sticks (she’s making Sissy a scarf) and then has another sleep.

I know exactly when Bubba and Sissy get home because I stop whatever momma and I are doing to wait for them at the door. But Bubba and especially Sissy are always on the move … in and out, usually with a friend or two. I can hear the cars pull into the driveway, so I holler and howl to tell momma what’s going on. This coming and going is 24/7 around here … but I only holler at night if something is wrong, or if anyone gets within five feet of momma in the bed.

But a couple of weeks ago, Bubba and Sissy stopped going to school. They were staying at home with me! I was so happy, I peed.

Bubba has had more time to yell at his people box. He has these round things over his ears and a controller in his hands. Sissy has a boyfriend named John. John is a great guy … because I like him. I am a very astute judge of character. Sissy is usually with him or one of her friends, but not in that public place. Momma won’t let anyone but Bubba go out car riding, so I wonder what’s going on?

The big people box in the sofa room has been talking about a horrible thing called coronavirus. Momma writes on a little people box that she puts on her lap. I don’t like that box because that’s my lap. But she’s been following this virus, and her little stock account, reminding Nanny between sleeps that it’s dangerous and that a bunch of fools panicked and rushed out and bought up all the toilet paper, then all the meats.

The meat?  I thought, “What am I going to eat?” Then Bubba came home with my favorite food, and we already have toilet paper (I use it like a ball if I get bored, or mad … but I get in trouble when I do that). Momma taught my Bubba how to go to that store place without touching anything with his hands, and everyone except Nanny is something they call germaphobes, whatever that is. Nanny used to be one too, but she has dementia and her memory isn’t very good anymore. But she has all of us to be her memory, and we love her.

So, since everyone except momma, Nanny, and I was changing their schedule because of this virus, I told momma that I want to help! Even though momma told Bubba he wouldn’t need to, Bubba cleaned his gun things and counted his ammo. I can defend our family just as good as that gun thing. I’m 85 pounds of lean, mean muscle with a jaw so strong that I once ate a whole chicken in under 5 minutes and chewed the bones into powder. Momma got really upset and cried … I licked her tears and told her I would be fine.

My doctor told momma she had never seen anything like it. Apparently, I have two rows of back teeth, whatever that means. But I can chew up anything in short order. The next day, momma said I pooped chicken soup, whatever that means. Okay … I don’t eat whole chickens anymore (they took them off the counter, so I can’t reach them). Well, I suppose those gun things would help me in any emergency, but I pity the fool that tries to get into this house uninvited.

Bubba and I have been telling momma we need to be “preppers” to some extent, and she agrees but lately everything has been breaking and momma has to fix things when they break. Sometimes, Bubba helps her. Next on the list is the round contraption in the garage that makes hot water. If we want to shower, someone has to go turn on two of those valves … and then run real quick to turn them off when the shower is over. But momma said someone else is fixing that thing.

The big orange zero turn machine that momma and Bubba run around the yard with decided to break, and momma was working on that when this virus started. She’s waiting for a part now.

Momma has been watching her little stock account … she’s been busy and said she hasn’t lost anything, whatever that means, but I have been watching this large bill called the stimulus. While I wouldn’t normally favor adding trillions of dollars to the national card, even as a four-legged person, I understand why they are doing it. This time, it’s a natural crisis and not caused by greedy bankers. I’m using the down time to learn more about economics. Momma yells at the people box on that subject too, but not all the time.

Anyhow … I have learned it’s important for all of us to do our small part to make sure this virus thing doesn’t find our house, or our community thing, and do whatever we can to stop it. Momma always stays with Nanny, Bubba gets us what we need, Sissy helps momma clean the house, and I follow my momma wherever she goes, in case she drops something.

After dinner, momma sets up the people box in Nanny’s room and puts Nanny to bed. Then we play for a while and momma is usually worn out by then. Momma has something I can’t pronounce that zaps her energy, it’s usually gone by evening, so we usually lay out on the sofa and watch the people box until momma falls asleep. If I like the show on the people box, I watch until it’s over. If not, I wake momma up and we go to night-night and wrestle over the quilt.

When we wake up the next morning, the whole story begins again.

My hope and prayers will remain with everyone impacted by this virus. I’ll do my part … I hope you will too.

I better sign off now before momma finishes cleaning and finds me on her lap box. But hey … I didn’t eat it.

Stay safe, y’all.

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