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“Hey, how did you know about that?” “My father works on cars at Barry’s shop.” “Do you and your father work on cars together?” Shaking his head without a word, Jonathan flashed a microexpression of sadness. “You’d never let me drive would you?” Jonathan had made an attempt to distract. “Is that a question or a statement? Because the first five words you said sounded like a statement but the last two you ended with had an upward lilt, which indicates a question.” “Nobody I know talks like you. I like it. And it was both I guess.” “It was both, you guess.” “Okay, it was both.” He had seized my meaning by the second repetition. “Then the answer is, ‘It depends.’” “That always means no,” said Jonathan. “Always?” I watched him trace the edges of the FOB. “Well, when my parents say something like that it does.” “Do they ever explain what it depends on?” “No.” “Do you ever ask?” “No.” “What stops you?” “What stops me from what?” Jonathan’s neck had splashes of red-colored frustration creeping toward his fair cheeks. “From asking them what it depends on.” “They’d probably say I was behaving with chutzpadik.” “Maybe because you would be asking them in a challenging way. But there’s a way to go about it with utmost respect that still fulfills the commandment of honoring your mother and father.” “Really? Would you teach me?” “Of course I would. It would give me great pleasure.” Red-faced Jonathan smiled from ear to ear and I hadn’t felt this happy since Noam when I lived in Israel. “We’re here!” Jonathan left his faceprint on the passenger’s window. “Fifth house on the right. Remember it! Can I call you when you get home?” “I have to get ready for bed,” I said.

Chapter 2 getting up from shiva  
Chapter 2 getting up from shiva  
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