Pancake Epiphany This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

November 11, 2010
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The room is tinted dark, although the sun is shining just outside the many windows of the house. I feel cold, stone floor beneath m bare feet as I walk though the kitchen of Grandma's house. I smell pancakes my dad cooks over a black stovetop. His large, hairy hands hold a bright silver spatula, and his head leans over a pan that consists of half-cooked pancakes. The floury dough fills my nose and triggers my mouth to water. I stare at my dad, watching him cook as I take a seat in the cushioned blue chair at the small square kitchen table. He is still in his pajamas; a dark, faded t-shirt and long boxer shorts.

"Smells great," I say as I'm leaning over the back of the chair to observe him cooking.

He turns his head and smiles, but doesn't say anything. He knows how awkward this is for me, He's completely aware of the fact that I haven't really accepted the fact that he's gay quite yet. I look at his eyes; they're wide and awake, showing off the beauty of their natural brown. His cheeks are lifted so high that his dimples are visible. Around his mouth I see prickles of unshaven hair that seem to stand up. I think carefully of how my dad feels. I try to imagine what he could be thinking about. I judge him, but I'm unaware that I am judging him. My mind races without my consent.

He turns his head back and continues to focus on cooking the pancake in the pan beneath him. His hand containing the spatula moves down, and I hear the scratching of it against the pan. The whoosh and slam of the pancake against the pan fills my ears, and then the sizzling of the gooey side against the pan does the same. My mind is still searching to explain haw my dad could find other men attractive. I am personally unaware of my own childishness and tenderness to the situation as I expand on it in my head.

Before I realize it, a plate that holds two pancakes resides in front of me, along with a fork and knife. I jump a little and raise my head to my dad as I watch him walk back to the stovetop to make more pancakes. I pick up to fork and feel the coldness and smoothness of it between my fingers. I dig it into the pancake and rip off a piece of pancake, and put it in my mouth. I feel the slight gooey inside on my tongue as I chew. I swallow, moving the fork down again to cut off another piece of breakfast.

It was at that moment when everything came crashing down on me like a piano in a cartoon. It was as if the world had shifted into position, and now it was armed and ready. I dropped my fork to stare back at my dad again. I look at him differently this time. I look at him like I should've been ever since he told me he was gay. Everything just seems to fall into place. The moment is the epiphany of a lifetime; a massive part of my life is finally complete. I don't look at my dad as only a gay man anymore, within this glance I see a father. I see a man who has great characteristics, like being funny and helpful. I smile to myself as I continue watching my dad, knowing that he is just a regular human-being. He's just like everyone else in this world-he's just living life. It took me years to come to such a simple conclusion.

My dad turns and sees me staring at him. He just smiles and laughs a little bit, only to then turn back to his pancakes. He sighs to let me know that he knows I have finally accepted him. him and I both know, but we don't have to say anything; we just have to be a regular family again.





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