We jumped at the chance to help take care of three grandkids while their mom and dad did duties at a church camp retreat! It’s what grandparents do.
We jump in and help, you know? All for one, and one for all! Do it for the team!
Oh, did I mention it was at Lake Tahoe? In a cabin setting? Second story waterfront view? Alright. Well, SURE! Happy, happy, happy to fly from Texas to help!!
Our job was to help entertain the three munchkins, ages 6, 4, and 2, even though they all answer “and a half” when asked their age.
Life is odd like that. By the time you’re my age, you round down. In fact, birthdays are now Pretend To Have Ten Fewer Candles on the Cake Day! Besides, it saves the environment from candle pollution and the smoke detector doesn’t go off!
Anyway, at the retreat center, Janet and I discovered there was no adjoining door between the rooms. In fact, there were three queen size beds in our room….with only one bed in Mommy and Daddy’s room.
Uh, huh! That’s just stinkin’ parental brilliance right there! Why didn’t I think of that as a young parent?!
Continue reading Nightmare on Tahoe Street
I shouldn’t have done it. Really. It wasn’t the brightest thing for sure. I rarely ever snap, but this was a clean break! I don’t even know why. Maybe it doesn’t matter. Maybe it does.
I ran into a drug store for a bottle of benadryl and started the rat like maze walk up and down every store aisle to find it. At the end of one aisle I almost walked over a little 8 or 9 year old girl who rounded a corner opposite of her mother. The mother apologized for her daughter and pulled her to her side of the aisle.
I smiled and said the customary, “Scuse me” and continued my search. I turned up the next aisle and a big, no … a huge, muscular defensive lineman guy about 24 or 25 years old was halfway up the aisle with his back to me.
All I could see, besides his highly defined arm muscles, was his sweat pants halfway down showing his underwear. They weren’t boxers either. They were whitey tighties that showed the distinct impression of what should’ve been covered up. Knowing the mother and child were one aisle over, I just reacted, nuclear reactor style. Continue reading Pull Up Your Pants
(Radio Announcer Voice) People see Santa Claus once a year, Thanksgiving to Christmas. The view of his life and who he is, is so slanted.
If people truly knew the soap opera life Santa lives the rest of the year, they would clamor to charge him with breaking and entering into their homes on Christmas Eve. Instead, they see him as a benevolent hero delivering government subsidized free presents to nice children everywhere. And so today, we continue with another compelling episode of — (pause for dramatic effect) — North Pole Days of Our Lives!!
Santa rolled over wearing nothing but a pair of over-sized boxers that the tooth fairy had given him. He looked at the clock. 11:12 AM. He’d slept in, again, and knew Mrs. Claus wouldn’t be happy about that.
Besides, Santa knew he snored all night because he didn’t use his Cpap machine for his sleep apnea. Worse yet, he had binged on left over eggnog and cookies the night before, which gives him severe flatulence.
He looked at Mrs. Clause’s side of the bed. Nice. Neat. Not slept in.
There on her pillow was a Hawaiian colored envelope with his name on it, not the official candy cane striped stationary authorized by the North Pole Post Office. His chubby fingers trembled as he struggled to open the letter.
He took a deep breath and began to read:
Dear Santa, Continue reading North Pole Days of Our Lives
Hurricane Rita was going to blow in a few hours later and I was shutting down the hatch. My four sons helped and I was about through when I walked in on them in the garage. They looked guilty. Figures.
I was hurrying so I didn’t ask why they had a life jacket, rope and a new 8’ x 10’ vinyl tarp. I should’ve done a mental stop, drop and roll, but there were just bigger fish to fry. Besides, the next day I’d find out during the peak of the hurricane.
Ever since they were little, Blake, the oldest, has come up with ideas for his younger brothers to try. Jared, the second born would usually pass on the idea, but instead encourage Todd, the third son, to try some scattered brain idea.
Sometimes Todd volunteered. Sometimes they talked him into it. Sometimes he was blackmailed into some wild, half-baked scheme, most of which (surprise, surprise) dealt with some sort of danger or peril.
Regardless how outlandish, or in this case, hazardous it might be, Todd usually tried their brain cramp scams.
Blake had an idea — a homemade parachute, powered by hurricane winds, to make Todd go airborne! Continue reading Catching Wind….in a Hurricane!
Three balls for $2 or nine for $5 — man after man, boy after boy, redneck after redneck, stepped up from a large semi-circle of spectators around the dunking booth at the Brazoria County Fair, Texas.
Sitting in the dunking booth surrounded by carnival rides and loud music, the little clown face painted man was easily heard above it all. “Ayayayayayaya!“, Bobo hollered into a microphone. He had no shortage of insults for anyone who dared pick up a ball trying to drop him in the water.
They’re only prize was to see Bobo drop in the water, but he and his worker were making money hand over fist. His abrasive voice rang out over loud speakers and like flies to a spider web, one by one he lured guys in to plop down their money. As soon they stepped in his web, Bobo started. His constant chattering, challenges and chastising made you laugh hysterically at times, wince at others.
The nature of young men is to battle, in one shape or fashion, to show their dominance, and Bobo capitalized on this — all the way to the bank. Everyone knew what was in store as some overconfident ego filled guy stepped up like a gladiator to throw a ball. In most cases, the gladiator walked away humiliated. For spectators like me, it was hilarious. Continue reading Bobo
When it goes right, home repairs and DIY work is fun. On the other hand, Bessie hold the barn door closed when it goes wrong!!
I updated a bathroom. There wasn’t exactly pressure to get it done quickly, but with four teenage girls in the house at the time, taking one of three bathrooms out of commission makes day-to-day life a bit more hectic, and when they’re all doing their hair at once, dangerous!
Each phase of the potty house renovation was down on paper, (that’s notebook paper, in case you’re wondering). I pulled up the commode first, and other than an unexpected splash of water in my mouth when moving it, it was easy as pie, or easy as….well, never mind.
The floor and wall tiles came off with a little elbow grease, and all was going as planned. Yay for a bathroom paper plan!
Continue reading Just Six Inches Away
Carl knows better. I don’t know how he knows, but he knows. Carl and I have a working relationship, but most of the work’s on my part. Even how Carl got here was an arm-twisting escapade (read here.) He does nothing, absolutely nothing!!
Really, the worthless feline folly should be dragging up mice, gophers or little dead snakes. He doesn’t. Half the time the flea bag is asleep flat on his back by the garage door. The other half he sits under a shade tree near the barbed wire fence watching the neighbor’s horses.
It’s a one-sided relationship! He can be totally out of sight, but if he hears his stainless steel feed bowl slide on the floor or the crinkle of the cat food bag, he comes running like he’s Lion King and I’m two days late.
I could live with it if every once in a while if he would do something for us, his “people”, as Carl likes to think, that would justify his meager existence. As it is, I’m going to have to renegotiate a month to month deal, maybe charge him cat rent, something.
Trouble is, Carl doesn’t know his place! In his messed up wheel of fortune mind, he’s Cat Sajack and I’m Vanna White! Continue reading Carl, The Species Confused Cat!
Sometimes you have to look twice to believe your eyes! I stopped at a red light on the loop around town right behind a pickup moving furniture, mattresses specifically.
Common sense plays a major role in hauling furniture, especially to lay mattresses down and strap them so they don’t blow out the back of a truck.
Not the Einsteins I was behind! They had a twin size box spring standing on its end in the middle of the truck bed with one mattress catty-cornered to the right side and a queen size mattress upright on its side on the left. No straps, ties, rope, nothing to hold it down.
OK, that’s not entirely accurate, because sitting behind the truck at the red light, I noticed little puffs of smoke coming from the pick up bed……and pair of legs… and brand new white tennis shoes hanging over the left fender well!
Using the theory of, of….well I don’t know what theory they were using, but the guy sitting in the back of the truck was a human tie down! The smoke came from a cigarillo he was puffing on!
I can almost hear the master mind driver saying in a mafia voice, “Listen here, kid! I do the thinking around here! Ya got that!?” Continue reading The Wassup Moving Company
When my youngest son, Clark, was in high school, he got a gash in the top of his head from a basketball tournament. Clark shaved part of his head so we could look closer. Butterfly stitches wouldn’t stick, so I pinched the skin together while one of Clark’s friends dripped Super Glue on the cut. Worked well too, a lot better than the first time….
….the first time Clark was 7 years old. I coached his baseball team and was working with the outfielders to catch pop flies. It almost dark and I told the boys no more but Clark begged for one more pop fly. Since he was my son, I went against my better judgment and threw one more pop fly, high, really high. Clark had perfect big leaguer form, stuck up his glove, and the ball hit him squarely in the mouth.
The week before he pulled his first front tooth and had big open gap when he smiled. The ball smashed the open gap and pushed the next tooth through his upper lip.
Another player’s dad, a doctor, took a look. It needed a stitch, maybe two. Off the record, he said if it was his son he would avoid the ER trauma and just super glue it together. Continue reading Super Glue Stitches