A tribute to Big Daddy Drew

I got the following email the other day. Let’s have some fun with it, shall we?

Based on your resume and professional past, I can assume that you’re at a certain point in your life.
That’s amazing. You made an assumption that I am somewhere. I’m impressed, but not blown away. I mean, I have to be somewhere, don’t I?

Can you look at your life and say that you are absolutely fulfilled?
Can a person be fulfilled? I suddenly get the feeling I’m not and am worried and anxious to know what else you have to offer me. Riches? Glory? Bigger boobs?

Looking back twenty years from now, will you be happy if you stayed where you are today?
No. I’m sitting in my basement in a desk chair. In 20 years, I’m pretty sure I’ll smell and my right knee will have cramped. Plus, I can’t stay here…the contractor’s coming in a few weeks and this will NOT be a safe place to be sitting. You know…with the sawing, hammering, manly stuff and the like.

Will you be able to look back and say that you chased all your dreams and did everything you could to realize those dreams?
(Eyes downcast). Not unless I take up ballet.

Most people can’t and won’t be able to answer yes to these questions.
It’s like you can see me from your computer! You know my disappointment!

I’ve come across so many individuals that have expressed an interest in starting their own business yet have been crippled by not knowing where to start.
Lack of knowledge is the #1 cause of crippling injuries among balding white males aged 32-37.

I work for a company that specializes in helping those exact people get started.
I can Walk again! Praise the Almighty!

As a franchise coordinator, I connect business professionals with franchise consultants that assist in researching and setting up a franchise business.
Oh…you’re not going to help me walk again, are you? You want me to open a Hardees?

I’d love to speak with you about whether this opportunity is something you’d be interested in.
I thought you were going to help me walk again…and get wonderful, perky, lush breasts. You’re a mean lady!

If you’re ready to take some action towards achieving your dreams, it’s time to act.
I can’t! I’m stuck in my chair!

Please visit our website at www.thisisastupidemail.com, take a look around, and fill out the “Get Started Today” form. There are no obligations and our services are FREE to you. Filling out that form allows me to gather some information about you so that it saves us some time in our initial conversation allowing us to focus on what’s really important.
My boobs.

I hope to hear from you soon!
I hope to be able to rise from this chair one day.

Dinner: A Play in 3 Acts

Monday:

Act I: The Prep

We have to move quickly and get things started rather early on Monday nights. We have basketball at 7:00 and dinner needs to be wrapped up by 6:30. Usually, I like for Monday to be a simple reheat of Sunday’s leftovers, but, last night, I needed to cook. But, all was not lost, we had thawed a London broil and I planned on grilling it.

I lit the grill by 5:15 and was cooking by 5:30. All was well. Having left the meat on the grill for maybe 30 seconds too long, we all went upstairs to eat. Dinner was simple and filled with things Shmuppie likes: the aforementioned meat, salad and JewelrySlut’s macaroni salad. Again…all things she should eat.

Act II: Dinner

5:55: We’re eating. We have 35 minutes to finish dinner before Shmuppie needs to go get changed for basketball.

6:00: Macaroni salad is done. She’s moving on to the meat course.

6:03: We’re still pondering the meat. I’ve given her one slice off of the steak. So, there are maybe 7-8 bite-sized pieces of meat. We’re talking about maybe 2 oz in total.

6:08: The first piece of meat is still in her mouth. It’s been there for roughly 5 minutes. She’s been chewing it for a while now. We’ve studied this behavior for some time and have discerned that the child doesn’t have an esophagus. She chews and chews until the food in her mouth is broken down to the atomic level. At which time, nutrients are simply absorbed into her body. It’s as if her mouth is an intestine.

6:09:
“One piece? That’s all? You’d better hurry up. What’s wrong with the meat? Too meaty? Too chewy? Too Meatish?” (These comments stem from an incident 2 years ago when she declared that she would not eat some chicken I had cooked because it was “gummish”. Yes…my chicken scarpariello was gummish…I meant for it to be that way)

“No…it’s spicy. My mouth is on fire.” (Mind you…the beef has salt and a grill rub (Available from the fine folks at St John Spice) on it. Said rum has zero spiciness to it. It’s salty and wonderful)

“No it’s not. Keep eating”

Act III: Trauma and tears

6:15: We’re now the 2nd piece of meat and are now, for reasons I can only hope science will one day figure out, using our hands to chew the meat. She’s removing gray, chewed bits of meat from her mouth, ripping them up and stuffing them back in. JewelrySlut (who is unfortunate enough to sit across from Shmuppie) is staring along in horror.

“If you don’t want to chew your food, I can put it into a blender and make a milkshake. Do you want that?”
(This is where the dinner goes off the rails, hits a fruit cart, barely misses a baby carriage filled with recyclables (CANS ANNIE! CANS!), knocks over a lamppost and screeches to a halt just behind a Ford Pinto…which it dings ever so gently and explodes)

(Wow…at least 3 movie clich‚s there…2 very specific ones. Who do I think I am? Bill Simmons?)

She looks at me, gives a cocky grin and shrugs with one shoulder. It’s the look of “Like I care. It’s not like you’re gonna do it”

“Really? You want me to blend your dinner. Because you know I will”

Same shrug.

From across the table, “Get the blender”

I go into the closet, get the blender and emerge back into the dining room. Shmuppie looks horrified. I take her dinner and hold it above the waiting pitcher. “Are you sure?” Another shrug…and in goes dinner.

4-5 pieces of beef, her whole salad (ranch dressing and all), and because you need a liquid to allow the blades to do their thing…half of her milk.

JewelrySlut is looking on with a look of utter disgust on her face. Shmuppie has now realized the gravity of the situation and wells up. WHIRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR. Blammo! Dinner goes into a soup cup. It looks as you’d expect it to look. I hand her the cup and a spoon.

6:20:
“You have 11 minutes. Then, no basketball AND no game on Saturday. Got it?”
(sobs) She took one look at the green sludge in front of her and gags.
“If you throw up on this table, we will kill you. Got it?”
(sobs with more intensity)
From both of us: EAT! (In retrospect…DRINK! Would have been more apropos)

Act III. Scene 2: The negotiations

6:26
“If I don’t eat, can I go to basketball next week?”
“If you don’t eat, I may kill you. You have 4 minutes”
“Can I have a straw?”
“By all means.”
With this, we hear slurping sounds from her seat. She manages to drink the liquid leaving behind, bits of blended red leaf lettuce.
“It’s too chewy”
“DRINK your dinner!”

6:30:
“You have one minute”
Now, we’re crying and pleading to be allowed to go to basketball. We’ve not complained about the taste, just that dinner is still continuing. I grab the spoon and shovel 2 loads into her mouth.
“Go upstairs and get changed!”
Once upstairs, I stuck my finger into what remained. It was cold and wet. It tasted kinda like creamed spinach…with a smack of beef.

I went upstairs to find Shmuppie sitting on the floor in the dark, wrestling her way into her gym shorts.

“Are you going to do that ever again?”
“No”
“Did you learn a lesson tonight?”
“Yes”
“You gonna eat tomorrow’s dinner?”
“I’m never going to d that again. I promise I’ll eat better from now on”
“Because you know what happens if you don’t, right?”
“You’ll get the blender.”

Curtain falls, we head to basketball.

In the car again…

Let’s play a game. I’ll name letters to a store or restaurant or service
(sigh) OK
J-A-P
I have no idea
Shoot…what was that sign? Jones something? Wait Johnson Card and Stuff I think
J-A-P? Johnson Cars and Stuff?
You’re gonna tell Mommy, aren’t you?

Time passes.

I have a riddle.
(the vein in my head starts throbbing) OK
What’s black, lives in the jungle, goes “ooh-ooh-ah) and has red spots on its feet
I don’t know…a gorilla? (I have no idea what to make of the red feet)
A monkey with splinters on his feet. Wait! Not splinters. SHOOT!
I think you mean blisters, don’t you?
Yea

I have another riddle
Oh God
What do you wash dishes with?
Ummm…a sponge and soap?
Yes, but what kind of soap?
Dish Soap?
Yes
What the hell kind of riddle is that?
Um…I don’t know.

I need a drink…or 7…or 23.

And then the psychho at Ace wanted to fight me

This was a fun way to spend time on a Sunday.

I picked Shmuppie up at my parents’ house. She’d spent the night before. We pulled out on to the main drag through their development, in behind 2 SUVs. Right after you make the turn, you go over a little cobblestone bridge. Mid-bridge, the first car in the line jammed on the brakes and stopped.

While unsettling, this is nowhere near odd…considering how people tend to drive around here. I figured the person was either lost, on the phone, eating chicken, reading a GPS or just not awake. I waited a beat and the car started up again. Only now, he was gong 5mph. Again, I assumed this person was lost and utterly oblivious to the fact that he was holding up progress.

At 5mph, we crept along. We got to the little roundabout and, of course, I ended up following the first car in the line. Coming out of the roundabout, we were still going 5mph, when the person jammed on the brakes again and stopped.

This elicited a honk from me. The honk was a combination of “Hey asshat…there’s someone here” and “Can we please get a move on?” This apparently didn’t please the person in front of me because he positively slowed down to idling speed. And, as luck has it, the side street we were on is about 2 cars wide AND they allow on the street parking. Needless to say, it gets narrow; I had nowhere to pass.

So…we idled along. Shmuppie was asking from the backseat what was going on. I wasn’t sure because this still could have gone the “lost and not paying attention” way or the “asshole driving slowly” way.

We crossed the next street…slowly, and pulled into the shopping center parking lot. All I wanted to do was stop at Ace and pick up some hanging brackets for a mirror. Of course, he’s going to Ace too. So, we slowly made our way through the parking lot.

Shmuppie and I parked and hopped out of the car. He was now outside his car…waiting for me.

Oh great…one of these. I grabbed Shmuppie by the hand.

Him: What’s your problem?
Me (Looks behind me)…Me?
Him: You got something you want to say?
Me: (Puzzled look)
Him: You always follow people so closely?
(Now…the rule I learned was that for every 10mph, you leave a car length. Since he was going 3mph, by that math, I was entitled to sit in his lap.) I was a car or 2 behind him because I was leaving room for whatever he’d planned next.

Me: Bombardier? Is the sarcasm bomb armed?
Bombardier: And ready, Sir!
Me: Deploy in 3…2…1 Drop!
Bombardier: Sarcasm bomb deployed Sir!

Me: (Earnest look on my face) Are you OK?
Him: What?
Me: Are you OK?
Him: What?
Me: Well, I just figured that someone driving at 5mph must not be feeling well. There’s no other reason to drive like that.

Bombardier: That’s a hit, sir!
Me: Good shot, Private!

Him (Invades my personal space and now is so close to me that I could have reached out and licked him): You got some problem?
Me: (looks down and to the left) You’re really going to get in my face like this in front of a 7 year old? Really?
Him: I’ll do what I want.
Me: OK…

At this, I kinda pulled Shmuppie to walk around him and into the store. He took a step towards me and Shmuppie promptly walked right into his ass.

Me: Excuse us, please.

We walked into Ace as he exclaimed to everyone in the store “This guy’s an asshole who doesn’t know how to drive. ASSHOLE!”

I just kinda looked at the legions of red-shirted Ace people with a look of bewilderment and gave them a shoulder shrug.

This fine, upstanding member of society then went through the store talking, rather loudly, about the 2 of us.

Good times.

Needless to say, the child was a bit unsettled.
Her: Were you going to fight that man?
Me: No…we don’t do things like that. He was acting a little inappropriately.
Her: Yes…I think he wanted to fight you.
Me: Yes…but I think he’s got something wrong with him to be acting that way in front of all these people. Don’t you think?
Her: Yea…I guess so. I still think he wants to fight you.

Now, this guy was a normal enough looking person. I’d say mid to late 50′s. White. Dressed normally (not like he was head to toe in State garb and looking to beat someone up because, as always, State had lost). What the hell is wrong with someone to A: drive like that and B: then more or less attack someone who’s standing there with his child?

The staff at Ace was horrified. I felt bad for them. I think if JewelrySlut had been the one driving he’d have acted the same way. The guy was seriously unhinged. Is that where we’ve gotten as a society? It’s suddenly OK to make up your own rules for driving and then go after anyone who you perceive to be disobeying them?

I wrote down his license plate number because you used to be able to go to the Wake county website and trace license plates to addresses. I always found this odd, but figured it would afford me an opportunity to send this guy 73 subscriptions to Cat Fancy, all marked “Bill me later”. Apparently, the Wake County people realized that their site was a tad too open to the world, and they pulled this feature. No Cat Fancy for him. That’s too bad. Because that would have been fun. If anyone can trace a license plate, let me know. I think this guy needs some free in-home septic system consultations.

Another boring week

Sorry, folks…nothing to see here. Work is picking up and I’m actually being given real assignments. Although, some of them are very data entry-intensive and are making me go somewhat blind.

I mean, there hasn’t been anything amusing happening this past week. No poop stories, no dumb kid stories, nothing. Just a really dull week.

The weekend should be somewhat less insane that last. We have basketball at 8, but no swimming either day. I need to make more than a few runs to the storage site, but the basement unload is going better than I had anticipated. We have about a month to go ti get it emptied before the work starts.

I should take some pictures down here of the before state so we can all see how awesome the basement’s going to look when it’s done.