DR. WILLIAM’S FAMILY FIX-U SHOP by R. C. Barajas

R. C. Barajas
DR. WILLIAM’S FAMILY FIX-U SHOP

Youngest Daughter
Services and Pricing

For Middle Son and Eldest Daughter, see separate price sheets.
Limited services available for Eldest Son

Overall Assessment of Youngest Daughter………………………$45

Dr. William will give a quick but thorough visual inspection.
This inspection will include but is not limited to:

    • Estimate-by-glance of current weight (accurate to within 4.3 grams) and advisement on how to lose a few pounds
    • Evaluation of current educational achievements and goals with expression of disappointment/resignation that Youngest Daughter seems to be just floating around in life
    • Feigned interest in work/art/academic activity (as appropriate by current “phase” of Youngest Daughter)
    • 3-point shift in conversation to determine degree of self-absorption
    • Exhaustive recounting of Dr. William’s own activities/food consumption/health and that of his wife Nancy and of their current dog(s)
    • An invitation for Youngest Daughter to stay for dinner

Tune-up of Youngest Daughter………………………$65

Customer testimonial:
I’ve had the full cut-down service
and boy did it do the job!
—Middle Son

The following services/adjustments will be performed:

    • Standard cutting down to size, as needed
    • Recalibration of confidence levels
    • Application of withering looks/quelling glances/back-handed compliments
    • Derisive references to clothing and the observation that the loss of a few pounds would certainly help.
    • Reminders of embarrassing things Youngest Daughter has done/said which were widely witnessed and which may still be recounted approximately monthly as part of family lore, including but not limited to:
        • the fact that her spelling as a child was the worst ever known to humankind
        • that once, when Youngest Daughter was quite young and had sought refuge in the downstairs bathroom because she was very constipated, her mother Nancy repeatedly yelled through the door, “Push! Push!” for the entire household to hear.
        • Wistful comparisons of her charming outgoing 3-year-old self to her terrified sharp-tongued teenage self
    • Reignition of adolescent rage

Acute Attitude Adjustment………………………$75.50

Customer testimonial:
Got the smile wiped
off my face many a time!
—Eldest Daughter

Acute Attitude Adjustment includes but is not limited to:

    • Slapping
    • Spanking
    • Throwing bodily into chair and breaking chair (Middle Son only)
    • Roaring
    • Fuming
    • Terrifying blue-eye bugging
    • Towering/looming over
    • Belittling
    • Mocking
    • Crashing furiously down hallway naked in the middle of the night, even though Youngest Daughter is not the target of his rage but still she sees his penis swinging as he passes her room making the event an effective deterrent
    • Menacing throat-clearing aimed at Youngest Daughter with laser-like precision
    • Humiliation at the dinner table in front of siblings and guests

Specific attitudes/actions to be adjusted include but are not limited to:

    • Surliness
    • Sullenness
    • Sharpness
    • Prickliness
    • Unhelpfulness
    • Any sign of religious affiliation
    • Swearing (pre-college)
    • Lack of appreciation for music (classical only)
    • Disrespect (Faintest whiff of)
    • Disregard of dinnertime (25 seconds or more late)
    • Disregard for prescribed dishwashing technique resulting in greasy dishes in dish drainer
    • Disregard of after-hours noise ordinances

Reminders………………………no additional charge

Dr. William offers basic reminders
which include but are not limited to:

    • Youngest Daughter is ignorant on all subjects, except those that are inconsequential
    • Youngest Daughter’s spelling is still the worst ever known to humankind

Limited Restoration………………………price on request

Customer testimonial:
How can you restore what was
never whole in the first place?
—Eldest Son

Limited Restoration includes but is not limited to:

    • A soft place to land when life is unsettled/disappointing/terrifying/shitty
    • The implied promise that his house is your forever home
    • Not too many questions asked as food and drink are plied
    • Small infusions of cash, if needed, sometimes even if not needed
    • Hugs that are awkward and sometimes oppressive because he is not good at hugging since his own father sure as shit never hugged him
    • Gently, with forbearance, assuring that you probably don’t have whatever horrible disease you’d heard/read about most recently
    • Jolly phone calls on Sundays at drink time, that, no matter where you are in the world, make you think of California sunshine and the smell of his garden
    • Reading aloud from Sherlock Holmes or Dickens
    • Telling, upon request, favorite stories and jokes, complete with accents
    • Expression of fatherly affection toward your partner—unless that person wrongs you in which case Dr. William will want to flatten that person
    • Admission in old age that he knows his sons are better fathers than he ever was
    • Admission in old age that he could have been more loving to his mother
    • Admission in old age to Youngest Daughter that she sometimes writes quite well

Additional Restoration services always free of charge:

    • Never being turned away from the house, even if Dr. William is angry with you
    • Invitation to stay for dinner, even if it’s just leftovers
    • A movie and a doggy blanket on an old couch after dinner and dishes are done

The following Restoration Services are no longer available:

    • Equally functional relationships with all four children
    • The house as forever home
    • Any doubt that Dr. William will always be the smartest person in the room even as his body fails him

We are sorry for any inconvenience.


R.C. Barajas was born in Stanford, California. She (eventually) garnered a degree in art. For ten years, she worked as a goldsmith. While living in Colombia in the early ’90s, she began writing nonfiction and short stories. She has published in magazines and newspapers including the Washington Post and the Philadelphia Inquirer. Her fiction has appeared in Cleaver Magazine, Fatal Flaw, Please See Me, and Defenestration. She also spends more time in the darkroom than is strictly good for her. Her photography has been published and exhibited in the US and Canada, which perhaps gives her an overblown sense of justification. She currently lives in Arlington, Virginia with her husband, a son or three, two crazy dogs, and occasionally a cat from Laos.

Read more from Cleaver Magazine’s Issue #38.

Submit to Cleaver!

Cleaver Magazine