Danny arrived from work to discover a home brimming with teenaged angst.
“Go talk to your daughter,” said Alana, his wife.
“Do I have to?” said Danny.
He shuffled down the hall and knocked on Erin’s door. “How’s it going?”
Erin lay face-down in her pillow. She mumbled some inaudible reply.
“I’m sorry, I only understand real words,” said Danny.
Erin rolled over and wiped tears from her eyes. “Why does the world hate me?”
“I don’t think it does,” replied Danny.
“It does! Everybody in the whole world hates me,” sniffled Erin as she sat up.
“Your mom and I love you,” said Danny, sympathetically.
“You don’t count. Everyone who matters hates me.”
Danny leaned against the door frame. “The only person ever universally loved is a dead politician,” he said.
“Daddy, you’re not helping.”
“I’m sorry. What do you want me to say?”
“All I want to do is change the world. Is that too much to ask?” said Erin.
“How do you wanna do that?”
Erin flopped on her bed. “I don’t know,” she sighed.
Danny thought for a second. “Well, NYU did a study that discovered that 70% of people will yawn if they see someone else yawn.”
Erin glared at her dad.
“If you got 70% of the planet to yawn at the same time, that would be something,” said Danny.
“That’s stupid,” huffed Erin.
“Is it? I can’t think of any other action that would include 70% of the entire planet. And think about it. If you’re yawning, you can’t commit a crime, lie, or even go to war. That’s pretty powerful for such a simple action,” said Danny.
Erin scowled. “I can’t believe you said that. Yawning can’t do anything…”
Danny yawned. Erin stopped complaining and yawned back.
Danny smiled. “Gotcha.”