As the clock struck 11:11 p.m., he found himself repeating the same wish he’s been unfruitfully casting for years now: that his father would spend more time smoking his “special” cigarettes.
“I can always tell when he’s been drinking grownup sodas because he argues with Mom all night,” he explained. “But whenever he smokes his 'special' cigarettes his eyes just get really red and he falls asleep watching episodes of 'Planet Earth.' We all get to bed nice and early on those nights.”
Matreese said his father has stopped smoking those special cigarettes because he can’t afford any more trouble with the policeman.
“My dad said he’s already got enough to worry about ever since he crashed his car into that school,” he explained. “Luckily, he wasn't drinking adult sodas at the time, or else he’d be in even bigger trouble. All he took that night was some of those foxy cotton [sic] pills the doctor gave him when he hurt his back.
“He told me that because it’s hard to tell how much back medicine is too much, or how long ago it was taken, the police can’t prove it was the foxy cotton [sic] that made him drive like a silly head," Jesse continued. "Especially if Mr. Spentworth is your lawyer. Mommy said Mr. Spentworth costs a fortune so I might not get to go to college unless I get really, really good grades.”
As much as he despises "adult soda" and "back medicine," Jesse said he hates his father’s non-special cigarettes the most.
“I hate how he smokes them in the house or when we’re riding in the car because they stink real bad,” he lamented. “They smell way worse than the ‘special’ cigarettes, which he only smokes in the garage.
“One time after he dropped me off at school my teacher said I smelled like an ashtray and warned me that daddy’s smoke could make me very very sick. I immediately called 911, but the policeman told me that since I’m 9 years old now my daddy is allowed to smoke in the car with me as much as he wants.
“Dad got really upset with me that day, but how was I supposed to know it was OK? Grownups sure do make up some really weird rules sometimes.”
Jesse assured the Parmelee Post that it wasn’t even his own health he was concerned about, but that of his father.
“He falls down a lot when he drinks adult soda or takes his back medicine, but it's way worse when he does both, which is most nights," he explained. "At least when he smokes ‘special’ cigarettes he actually pays attention to me. The last time he did we spent four hours just looking at all the finger paintings I had done at school this year. That was the best day ever!”
Still, Jesse seemed to understand his father must continue to abide by the law or risk serious legal trouble.
“I guess because the rules say my dad can keep drinking adult sodas and taking his back medicine I can't get too upset with him," he said. "I just wish the people making those rules would actually think about us children more often.”