The Father, when he returns home, tells the Mother about the consequences, and they both decide they’d tell the Child at a later date, “probably the morning after the first night he comes home drunk. If the memory’s to be tarnished, it’s probably best not to do that while it’s still being formed,” they think. While decorating the house with gleaming, snaking tinsel and drinking a thick seasonal cocktail, the Mother is mutely hoping the revelry won’t descend into the kind of berserk soirée of which her husband had far too many times been the nucleus.
She is reassured by her husband that nobody’s been hurt, but still listens that night to the police scanner he’d given her for her birthday five years ago, to check for reports of raining rock. While she’s doing this, the Child comes into the room, asking if the events are available to watch back on the internet, and Mummy says yes,
but not tonight; the thing’s made quite enough of a mess already.
Let’s review it tomorrow shall we? With the help of daylight and fruit cake.
A Child watches its newly-sober Father bring unlicensed public sculpture to a hill with the aid of a tipsy squadron mustered from pavements outside the pubs. The sculpture is a car-sized reindeer head, thriftily accessorised with branches for antlers and slick black boulders for eyes. The local news is broadcasting the events.
To believe it made the local TV news, we’ll have to assume there’s nothing much happening in the area that day, and that the producers want something seasonally delightful to precede the weather forecast: a whooping cluster of red-faced goons lurching about in public with potential weapons in their gloves, at the behest of a silver-eyebrowed peculiarity. But it’s enchantingly lit, we suppose,
by the streetlights and the car lights and the lights on the nearby bridge.
Then one of the sculpture’s eyes slips out and frolics off the cliff edge into the river.
A plunge of maybe one hundred feet. It could’ve demolished the cranium of an innocent reveller.
Is there no regard for public safety in this celebration of tomfoolery?
The TV crew has stopped filming before this happens, so the Child at home doesn’t get to see the consequences, and will only be left with an idealised image of what whims and spontaneous communal exuberance can involve.