Yeah, but now I’m gettin’ old, don’t wear underwear,

Serious talk time again.

(Collectively, all 4 of my regular readers are rolling their eyes and saying “Great…he’s got problems with his nuts again”)

Yup.

So, as we recall, I chronicled my change from briefs to boxers earlier this year. This went OK, but I had to perform surgery on the boxers. They needed to be cut in the crotch to allow my suddenly massive thighs to fit in the legs. Otherwise, I had either snugness issues or serious bunching. Neither was good. Well, because I performed said surgery in a hotel room with a steak knife (I was staying in a Residence Inn (and because I stayed at a Rez, I could cut my pants (Joke for Smed))), the cuts were a little ragged. They started fraying all over the place. So, JewelrySlut bought me some new undies. Well, they bunched and I was forever grabbing at my sack.

Well, in my stocking the other day, I found a set of boxer briefs. I’m still undecided about them. Yesterday, they felt restrictive. But, after having them on and sleeping in them, they may feel a little bit better.

It’s a difficult life I live.

So, it’s Wednesday. Tomorrow, the Big old Jet air-a-liner lands and brings my parents to the Piedmont (we do live in the Piedmont, don’t we?). They will be in town until the evening of the 1st. That’s 4 nights with them. I’m trying to find ways to keep us all distracted and away from each other as much as possible.

For example: Thursday night, my father, JewelrySlut and I are going to a local watering hole to watch Rutgers stomp a new mudhole in K-State. Simultaneously, they will be losing to UNC in men’s hoops, but I don’t care.

Friday, their new kitchen is allegedly being installed. That should keep at least a portion of the group busy. I have no idea what we will do on Friday night. It could get ugly.

Saturday, the 3 of us are going to a NC State basketball game. We don’t have a good reason to do so other than it will get us away from my mother and Shmuppie. On Saturday night, the Giants and Redskins play, but they’re on the stupid NFL Network. So, back to the bar the 3 of us will go.

Sunday is New Year’s Eve and all I have planned is a nice dinner. I need several distractions. We think we may just get my mother drunk and see if she passes out at 7:00. We’d be very fortunate were it to play out that way. Then we won’t have to listen to her insanity.

It looks like a full few days, but there are some serious gaps in the schedule which lend themselves to conversation. That’s bad.

Can I change topics? Does anyone have a Dell laptop? I do (for work). It acts funny sometimes. I’ve noticed that the mouse hates table tops. I’m at the kitchen table now and it’s got a wood grain finish to it. As does my desk. Well, I think the mouse hates it. It likes to jump around and move all over the screen. Not good times. But, outside of the wood thing, the cursor also likes to jump all over the page. I don’t understand. This little side-rant was born in the fact that I was happily typing along when I found myself 4 paragraphs from where I expected to be. The cursor had magically hopped to a new place on the page. Anyone know how to cure this?

Poor JewelrySlut. Her laptop is already on the fritz. I need to bring it in for a new battery. The one provided with the computer seems to be 100% dead. It won’t take a charge. So, she’s tethered to the desk in the office and can’t happily roam the house surfing the internet for porn or whatever she needs to surf for. I feel bad. I should have checked that ahead of time. But, any laptop I’ve ever had was supplied by work and came all charged up in advance. So, it never occurred to me to go out of my way to check the battery. We learned this the hard way when, after booting it up, we unplugged the back to take it upstairs and it abruptly shut off. That’s real good for the hard drive I hear.

Oh…I know this is an early warning, but I have a potentially great TV show to watch. On January 3 from 5:00 – 6:00 PM Eastern, my father’s boss will be on QVC. They work for a water conservation company and he’ll be on the air shilling home conservation kits. From all I’ve heard, the guy is a grade A asshole and likes to curse a lot. My father’s DVR’ing it in the hopes that the boss does something that lands himself in jail or in FCC hell. So, we’ll be watching it here. I’d suggest you do the same.

And, lastly. Please pray for Barbaro.

Smed: I seriously had a dream last night that Deadspin was reporting that he had died!

I need a life.

Wait: one final comment. If you got a card this season or didn’t get a card, I am not responsible. I’m not pinning this on JewelrySlut or anything, but I am always unaware of who gets cards and who doesn’t. This comes from the person who forgot to get his wife cards for Christmas. You should have seen the look on my face when I saw the cards she got me. So, if you got one, bully for you. If you didn’t, I either don’t have your address or JewelrySlut has decided she doesn’t like you enough to get a card. See, I managed to pin it on her anyway.

He hates to admit it, but Xmas is more work than fun

How did Christmas go?

It went.

When was the last time I poked my head in around here? I can’t even remember. I think I told the story about the migrant workers trying to take a nail gin and circular saw on a plane. Did I? (Too lazy to go check, but somehow energetic enough to keep writing about it)

I’ve been home for a little while now. So, that’s good. I was home all last week and work was insane. I have to get used to being at home for work again. But, I’m doing OK. I think it would help if all my coworkers hadn’t been thrown out of our office and scattered to the HealthCareRelatedCompany wind. It’s somewhat hard to contact anyone. But, I muddled through and made it to 3:00 on Friday. We were told we could knock off for the weekend at that time.

So, having knocked off officially, we went food shopping. Quasi, Dingaling and El Guappo were coming over on Saturday and we needed to buy stuff for dinner. They had told us that they were too bust to come over on Sunday for Christmas Eve (fine with us), so we had to prepare a giant children’s meal for them. They have the eating habits of 2nd graders, so it can be hard to make anything worthy of my culinary mastery. JewelrySlut decided that a nice simple baked ziti, garlic bread and salad would be more than fine. That way, they would have nothing to pick through on their plates and I could remain somewhat stress-free.

Saturday came and Raleigh was bathed in lovely weather. I found this out at 8:15 when the phone rang.

They sold the house in NJ. They’re coming in early February.

Shit

Having thrown up, we went out. It was warm and sunny. We hit the Farmer’s Market (note to selves: Don’t go there the weekend before Christmas). It seemed to be Ghetto-Day. I have nothing against my neighbors in Christ of Color, but it was rough in there. A lot of pushing and yelling. Shmuppie, normally the Queen of the Farmer’s Market, was not happy.

We survived and went home to prepare dinner and relax. Shockingly, when the 3 of them arrived, things went well. The 2 adults behaved and spoke in complete sentences. Guappo and Shmuppie got along and played nicely. Guappo even ate vegetables. His parents were duly shocked. We exchanged gifts and sent them on their way.

Sunday was a relatively quiet day. Shmuppie and I had to run out to buy parsley and rent some movies. Otherwise, we just hung out. We played outside again (it was still warm) and had a good time. JewelrySlut and I managed to eat our weight in assorted seafood. We had mussels in a white wine sauce at 3:00 as an appetizer. Later, we had spinach pasta with shrimp, calamari and clams. We washed all this down with a bottle of champagne and 2 bottles of wine. Things were going well on Christmas Eve. We had plans to put Shmuppie to bed, get the gifts out, assemble them, drink some more champagne, screw and go to bed.

Whoops.

We put Shmuppie to bed and decided to watch a little TV in the basement before raiding the guest room closet for gifts. I poured 2 Poinsettias (champagne with cranberry juice), handed them to JewelrySlut, grabbed some cookies and a DVD and headed to the basement. Well, JewelrySlut hit stair #3 and went flying. Her feet went out from underneath her, drinks went flying and she landed hard on her back. Fortunately, the stairs are split with a landing, or she’d have tumbled down 12 stairs. Good times. She seemed OK, but had managed to spill nearly 1/2 a bottle of champagne! Not good times. So, I hustled upstairs, grabbed some towels and we started cleaning.

We gently led JewelrySlut down the rest of the stairs and put her on the couch. I started watching the movie and she promptly fell asleep. I’m not sure if this was from the drink or the extreme pain. But, it was 8:45 and she was snoring. So, I watched My Super Ex-Girlfriend (not a movie I recommend). After it was thankfully over, I went to get the gifts.

Here’s what Shmuppie asked for:
A Drum
Another Drum
A banging drum
A trumpet
A violin
A Flute
Paz Stuff (From the TV show Paz the Penguin)
Discovery Kids stuff
A game
A microphone.

Yup.

We got her an electric drum pad kit, a microphone, a recorder (one of those flute-things we all played in the 3rd grade), some simple percussion things (a bongo, clackers etc), Chutes and Ladders, a computer mouse and some other assorted stuff.

I lugged it all downstairs and put it together. JewelrySlut woke up at some point (likely when I got out the torch to cut the toys away from their packaging) and was mildly upset that I had started without her. Of course, she was paralyzed and in no condition to do anything about it.

We laid out the loot, laid each other and went to bed.

Shmuppie blessed us by not waking up until 9:00 on Christmas. Woot!

I made coffee and headed downstairs ahead of them. I had the new video camera out and wanted to catch the moment.

Shmuppie comes into the basement, looks at the tree and asks “Where are my instruments? I wanted a flute, a banging drum, a trumpet and a violin. And, where’s my Dora game?”

Bitch.

She spent the whole day complaining about what she didn’t get. When my parents called, she announced that she was very disappointed in Christmas and that she didn’t want to talk on the phone. The kid sulked all day.

Now, I once sulked on a Christmas. It was 1991, my senior year of high school, and I got a laundry bag and a shirt that was 2 sizes too small for Christmas. That was the year I finally realized that my parents didn’t like me. But, that’s another episode.

So, we had a sulking kid. A spoiled rotten sulking kid. She got a dump truck worth of stuff but kept bitching about it. She also made mention at one point that Nana (JewelrySlut’s mother) had died because it was Christmas. That earned her some face time with the corner.

The holiday may have sucked for the kid, but it was good for us.

I got:
2 shirts from Eddie Bauer
My World Almanac
Scrubs Season 3, Arrested Development Season 3, the 2 Kevin Smith College Tour DVD’s and Pirates of the Caribbean #2.
I got a loud Hawaiian shirt and a Buffett-related book.
For the big stuff, I got the enormously huge National Geographic World Atlas and a 12V Dewalt cordless drill.

I did well.

JewelrySlut got one main gift: a laptop. She also got a cordless mouse and some new ear buds. I had picked up some unmentionables for her back in NJ a few weeks ago, but they’d been worn and crumpled weeks ago.

So, 2 of us were happy. I looked through the atlas and JewelrySlut puttered about on her computer. Shmuppie sulked. We watched Cars (a new DVD for Shmuppie) and made a lovely prime rib for dinner.

Shmuppie sulked.

JewelrySlut and I took in another movie and went to bed.

I’m allegedly working today (but trading it in for Friday).

My parents arrive on Thursday at about 11:00. They’ll be in for the weekend. We expect it to suck. My mother is doing nothing but complaining over her plight. She has to pack up the house and hates to pack. She also wants to take Shmuppie to Italy next summer without us and we get the feeling that she plans to bring all the “missing” instruments with her when she comes down. If she does, there will be trouble.

I hope to be back here soon.

Here is a hammer and lots of tacks

As usual, I’m losing my faith in people.

But, before I get into it:
The pan can be bought from Adam and Eve. JewelrySlut actually has 2 pans, but my mother has the larger one and won’t give it back. Make all the “your mother” jokes you’d like. I expect you to be as crass as possible.

So, as for people sucking and wondering why I get out of bed:

Friday:
I’m home (YAY) and working away. We’re also gathering up the decorations for the holidays. I’m kinda melting down as I realize that we’re about to import several additional cubic feet of stuff into the house. The basement is crowded as it is and there ain’t a whole lot of room for the orchestra hall that Shmuppie wants for Christmas. The problem is the enormous wood burning stove in the family room. If we could get rid of it, we’d open up about 30 square feet in the room and give Shmuppie another play area. We’d get rid of the stove and knock down the brick hearth. We could also use the space for the tree.

JewelrySlut and I decide that the stove has got to go. So, I went to Craiglist and looked for people in Raleigh looking for wood stoves. I found 3 and sent 3 emails saying that if they could come over, they could have the thing.
(Problem 1 hit me here. What if all 3 people wanted it?)
So, I head to the Y.
JewelrySlut gets a call from someone who wants the stove and said he’d call beck at 4:00. OK. I get an email from Dave who wants the stove. Now, we have 2 people who want it.

I email Dave and say “Were you the guy who called? Someone else already called and I don’t want to promise it to 2 people”. He calls me, and as it turns out, his mother-in-law lives in the Kingdom. I tell him that I’m expecting another call, but will try to make up an excuse why the 1st guy can’t have it. All sounds good.

At 4:00, the phone rings and it’s Guy #1. Only thing is that he’s in the parking lot and can’t see what house number is ours. Oops. So, this guy and I wrestle the enormously heavy stove to off the bricks, out to the patio, on to the hand truck, up the hill and to his truck. I already feel bad for Dave.

So, I call Dave and apologize. I tell him that the other guy just showed up and that couldn’t really tell him no…seeing as he was at my house. Dave slams the phone down.

I didn’t feel bad because I told him upfront that I had another potential “buyer”. Well, on Saturday morning I checked my home email and had a message from Dave in which he cursed me out. That’s great. To his credit, he did go home, obviously realize what an ass he’d been, and re-emailed me to apologize but still say that I basically sucked.

Was I wrong? I was upfront with him. Was I wrong to email 3 people and offer them all the chance to get the stove? It’s like posting a want ad…whoever calls first gets it. Well, to my credit, I didn’t call Dave and scream at him and I have no plans to terrorize his mother-in-law because I have the power to do so. I’m turning over a leaf. Or something.

Then, my mother came for the weekend.

Ugh.

JewelrySlut and I had a lovely dinner on Saturday night at an Irish place. But, it was smoky and JewelrySlut got a migraine and ended up puking on the bathroom floor later that night. She told me she was too embarrassed to ask for my help. I reminded her of some of the things I’ve seen her do (and have done to her) and she said that puking on the floor was not sexual (or is it?) and hence embarrassing.

I don’t know.

Got my shopping for JewelrySlut done on Sunday morning. Her new laptop is almost all installed and set up. She’s happy. I’m shocked that the process went so well.

Then, we have this morning. I should have stayed in bed.

Got to RDU and security was slow again. Now, they queue you up downstairs and then take you up an escalator to the 2nd floor where you queue again and then get checked. Whenever it’s busy, they send people up the escalator in groups of 20 or so to avoid a backup at the top.

Not today.

I’m about 3/4 of the way up and I notice that the group at the top is stuck; they’ve sent too many people up. I got to the top and had to hop to the right to avoid getting killed. Several of us were trying to motion people over to the right and out of the way of the crush of people coming up the escalator. You should have seen the fear in their eyes. Because, if you’ve ever been in that situation, it can be scary; you can’t stop the escalator and there’s nowhere to go at the top. Finally, I had to scream at some jackass on a cell phone who just would not move out of the way. He was up the escalator and that was fine by him. He could not understand why he needed to move. I yelled at him “Move before you get someone killed”. This was good times at 6:05 AM.

10 minutes later, I’m on line to be screened. On the line to my left are 2 Hispanic migrant-looking types. One opens up a ratty duffel bag and pulls out a nail gun…and nails…and a huge hammer. I cock my eyebrows because I can’t wait to watch this one. Then, his friend pulls a circular saw out of his backpack. Fortunately, my line has ground to a halt because I can’t wait to watch this. A TSA agent is watching the spectacle and can’t even speak. She has no idea how to respond; I mean a nail gun, nails, hammer and saw! She finally tells them, in English, that they can’t bring that on board. They respond by taking off their belts and shoes. So, she tells them in a louder voice that they can’t bring the items. At this point, my line moved, but I can only imagine how well this all played out.

On to the plane we go. I’m in 12E. On a 737-800, the rows go 9, 12, 14. Why? Beats me. 12E is a middle and there’s no seat to the right (no window seat). Hence, 14F is the best seat on the plane. But, I have nobody to my right so I am happy. Then, an off-duty flight attendant comes down the row with 2 huge rolling bags. She then, while boarding is going on, proceeds to take it upon herself to re-pack the overhead bins to suit her fancy. Eventually, she’s all done…except for 1 item, my laptop bag. She’s swinging it around like a lunatic. I had to yell over the din of her coughing and yelling to her to ask her exactly what she planned to do with my bag and if maybe she could hand it over. She had 14F. I put the bag in front of the window seat to my right. The woman got on the plane, put a blanket over her head and then coughed for an hour and a half. I was thrilled.

Now, the work day is almost over. I would like to go home.

I leave on Thursday afternoon on a 2:45 flight and then am home for at least 2 weeks. I could use the rest.

Everything seems to be wrong.

Here they are folks.

The pictures of the cranberry sauce. Now, mind you that the people who did this are the following ages:
32
35
43
56

We’re all very mature.


The empty pan:

Partially Filled Pan:

The filled pan. All wet and hot and ready to be cooled down. (Wow was that ever gay)

The quivering mound of cran-goodness:

One day soon, JewelrySlut will make her chocolate lava cake in that pan. Then, we will all burst into flames.