Saturday, March 26, 2011

I am a PIRATE!

I really am.
I can prove it.
I have pictures and everything.

Its goes like this.
My parents own a pontoon boat, and really, for being nothing more than a floating floor it is a lot of fun.
we would go up and tow it to one of the lakes, float around a bit, splash, fish and get sunburned.
Fun time for all.
It was a floating floor with a motor.
The motor was sporadic.
My family believes in the buddy system.
If something is broke, or someone is hurt you call around to all your buddies to seek advice.
Invariably someone knows someone or your buddy goes green when he sees that your thumb is actually split in half and you get to get something fixed, or go to the ER.
I absolutely despise the buddy system.
Hate it.
Nothing ever gets fixed right when its a buddy doing the fixing, and a buddy of a buddy? Even worse. They always cut corners.
And waiting 6 hours with a split in half thumb to go to the ER, sucks.
So the tooners motor was a bit sporadic, sometimes it works, sometimes it dont.
This is how I became a Pirate, so I cant really complain.
It makes a fun story.
As a side note, its an odd thing how the things that make me the maddest are what make others laugh the hardest? Its a flaw in me.
The wife and I had it down to a science, the unloading of the boat. I would back it in, she would hop in the tooner, I would chuck in the kids and the victuals and then push off the boat, jump into the truck and park the truck and the trailer.
Wife would motor around to the dock and I would step on and off we would go.
Putting the tooner away after a bright day was the reverse, motor to the dock, Tom (thats me) steps off and runs to get truck and trailer while wife motors around to pull the boat in as I back the trailer into the water.
Today we had the nephews with us, good toe heads both of them. spent the whole day out getting sunburned, swearing (just me) at the lack of fish and splashing around.
It was a fantastic day.
A day of good memories.

But, storm clouds gathered and it was time to go.
So we started the routine.
Motor to dock, Tom jumps off, runs to get the truck and waits in line with all the other uber efficient types waiting to get their boats out of the rapidly roughening lake.
I get the trailer in the water and, no tooner. No wife and kids, no nephews.
So I looked, and looked, and grabbed the binoculars from some lame fat dude and looked.
And found them.
Halfway across the damn lake.
No other boats around.
(this is my favorite part)
I Parked the truck and the trailer and went running down to the dock, I ran to the end of the dock just as a young kid in a brand new boat was stepping on to the dock to tie his boat off.
I grabbed the rope, pushed the kid back on to the boat and hopped on after him.
"Hi, You arrrrgh going to take me out to that boat (point at the tooner) and tow it in for me."
I said this with my biggest most friendly smile
the kid and his five kid passengers sort of froze.
the kid I had gently led back on to the boat said "a a a a a are you stealing our boat?"
he stuttered, poor kid.
I said
"Oh HELL NO! I am just commandeering it"
Maybe my rollicking laughter at this point was a bit of overkill, but Hey, its what we pirates do.
By the time we got out to the tooner my hostages (ride) were getting into the spirit of the thing. The wee little boys were huddled protectively around the wee little female and casting mutinous glances in my direction. I was standing on the point of the boat, if I had had boobs I would have made a kick ass hood ornament thingy.
The wife and kids were valiantly trying to start the tooner, the toe heads were ? Paddling ? but the paddles did not quite reach the water, so really they were just splashing.
But they felt good about themselves.
The captain, the stuttering boy wonder, hollered, "AHOY THE BOAT" and I stepped gracefully on to the floating floor.
Oh the cleverness of me.
I still had his rope, which was tied to his boat.
and they were fresh out of boarding axes.
So they towed us back.
Arrrgh. I sang sea chanteys all the way home.
Pirate hat arrrgh

Friday, March 25, 2011


I cant cook.
I failed Home economics remember?
The last time I made breakfast for the #s I used powdered something instead of powdered the other.
Then I made them eat it.
After I had screamed and yelled and forced them to eat three bites each, I sat down and took a bite.
It made me gag, which made #2 throw up, which made #1 spew, which made a mess for me to clean up.
In lieu of an actual apology, I took them to Marie Calendars.
I suck.
So when I decided to cook dinner I tried to keep it a secret.
I figured I could always tell them a neighbor brought it over and feed it to the dog if it was too bad.
But what to make?
Something simple obviously.
With Jam?
I could always garnish (food channel word) it with canned corn.
It was a conundrum. So I Googled it.
I was directed to millions of  blogs, all about cooking. Most of them displaying food porn in abundance.
All of the recipes sounded intricate and complex.
What in the Hell is plating? Braise? Glaze?
Not in my vocabulary these words.
At least not for food.
So I looked on my phone. And found this thing called "BIG OVEN" simple recipes for families.
Under "Easy" I found a recipe for Chicken Enchiladas.
Win win.
Of to the store to buy the ingredients. (thats the food stuff)
I found it all, but I was starting to think that whomever wrote the recipe was an idiot.
oh, wait.
Whoever wrote the recipe was WRITING it for idiots! That actually just occurred to me.
So I got all the stuff and headed home.
Then I destroyed the kitchen.
It started when I had to boil the chicken boobs.
Boiling chicken boobs is boring as Hell.
So I decided to skip to the next step whilst the mammary's were marinading.
Open the can of Cream of Mushroom and plop it into a pot, a small pot.
Open up the can Of Cream of Chicken and plop it into a pot. a big pot.
Then cover the bottom of a pan, a really big pan, with olive oil and turn it on high to cook the raw tortilla things.
Are you keeping track?
My stove thing has four burner things on top, each  of these was now occupied with a kitchen vessel full of water,fowl tits, mush,mush and oil.
Did you know that when the steam from the water and mush evaporates and drops into the boiling oil it splatters?
And it HURTS!
So, i quickly chucked  a tortilla on the oil, and started stirring the mush.
Then the boobs started boiling.
It was at this point I forgot the instructions and just started making stuff up.
Hot salsa, quickly stirred into grey mush.
Mild salsa quickly stirred into brown mush.
Flip Tortilla.
Half a can of boiling breast water into each can of mush.
Flip tortilla.
Swear break to run burned fingers under cold water.
Flip tortilla.
Colby jack cheese,  two small handfuls stirred into mushes.
Flip tortilla
Grab hot boobies, scream, drop them back into boiling cauldron of death and then grab tong things.
flip tortillas
use tongs to grab mams, shred them up
mix them into mush. 1 1/2 boobs per pot.
Throw burnt tortilla to the ground for dog.
Flip tortilla.
Find glass dish. Discard for size. Find bigger glass dish.
Turn on oven to 200.
Flip Tortilla.
Put done tortillas into dish.
Find spoon
Flip tortilla

Fill up done tortillas with mush, roll them up and put them in dish
five with hot salsa mush
five with mild salsa mush
(brown and grey)
Dump steaming water down sink.
Through the cloud of steam see lonely forgotten can of enchilada sauce.
Full Stop.
Now what?
The instructions were no help at all.
I had left them behind long ago.
Dump can of enchilada Sauce into what is left of brown mush, bring it to a boil.
Dump it over the top of enchilada things and then cover them with shredded mexican four cheese blend bag you find in the fridge.
Turn to discover #1 and #2 staring with wide eyes at the destruction of a clean kitchen.
Forget about blaming neighbors.
Pop whole damn thing in the oven.
After 15 minutes turn oven to broil to melt stubborn cheese on top.
Take out of oven.
Take a deep breath.
Serve it to the three pickiest eaters on the planet.
They Loved it.
Had seconds.
And nobody got sick.
I rock.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

To Fly

I dropped my children off at school this day.
Finally a beautiful spring day after a long and droopy winter.
#1 walked to the door of her school, looking so very grown up.
Breaks my heart into tiny little pieces to see her so Beautiful. Happy little pieces yes, but shattered nonetheless.

#2 starts school a little later, and gets out a little later. She explained to me yesterday that starting later is fair, "#1 has a lot more to learn there at the big school, my little school just teaches little things"
She has a point. I guess.
In true #2 fashion she also added "But we should get out of schools at the same times, Dont they knows we needs to plays together?"
She has a point.
I shall be informing the school board post-haste.
She really does talk like that, by the way. #1 talks like an adult, actually better then most adults. She far surpasses me.
#2 surpasses everyone, she speaks her own language.

I watched her this morning.
There is a small hill that slopes down to her school yard.
An asphalt track runs down it on a gentle angle, most kids just walk down the path.
Not so, #2.
I watched her today. Backlit by the rising sun.
She stood at the top of the path, saying nothing to any one. She adjusted her school bag and unzipped her coat.
Very deliberatly then, she stepped off the asphalt path.
Put her hands in her pockets, spread her wings and flew straight down the hill.
I could see her swooping and gliding, the wind blowing hard today giving her that extra height she needed to clear the curb. She used her momentum from the flight to glide in and out of the other children. Whriling and diving in and out of the cliuques and the single children, she flew circles around them all.
I saw her land perfectly at the end of a line, knees slightly bent to take the gentle shock of returning to earth.
She smiled in disdain as she slowly took her hands from her pockets and zipped her wings away.
Silly Humans.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


I try to keep this blogthing fun.
Or at least entertaining.
I got to thinking last night.
About going faster.

The weekend after I got the motorcycle I have now, I went on a ride with my Cousins.
Just a short little jaunt.
I still had the salesman's admonition to "Take it Easy until She is broken in" which meant nothing over 80ish for the first 100 miles or so, ringing in my head.
So I was taking it easy.
We got to a gas station, 78 miles from home.
Not too far, about 1/2 way on our little journey.
I checked my phone.
1215 PM.
There were three missed calls from the wife.
So I called.
The reception was horrible.
I heard "Has  gone into anaphalactic shock and the ambulance is on its way" I caught number 1s name a few times so I knew it was her.
42 minutes later I walked into the Hospital and was Holding their hands when the Doc gave #1 an epi shot.
Last night I got thinking about speed. Not just the speed at which we travel, but the speed in which we live.
SO many crises, so many things.
Just a random little thought.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Alligators are FUN

Nothing ever turns out the way I expected. I suspect that this is either because I expect the impossible and/or I am Gods designated one man comedy show.
A short example would be spray foam insulation.
Everyone else in the world presses the top and the foam comes out.
I had a can explode in my face and almost kill me.
This is irony.
It was also hilarious.
I just remembered something.
It is a little Irony and a lot of stupidity.
You see, I lived in the south for a few years. They have alligators there. I have since learned that to alligators, we (You, humans) are nothing more or less then food.
I knew this then, but I don’t think you ever really KNOW this until some animal has tried to eat you.
Its humbling.
A friend of mine and his father owned an alligator farm.  The theory was, to raise alligators for their skins and meat. The practice was, they couldint get the right permits to sell the hides and steaks so they were just feeding them until they did.
They asked me  ”ifn I warnted to gos and feed them gators”
Of COURSE I did. Shazam! Feeding Gators! How cool is that?
It sucked.
I had no idea that in order to feed the Gators we would first have to get the gator-chow.
It comes prepackaged with feathers.
Dead Chickens.
I drove a 1 ton dump truck to 20 different farms, Egg farms, to gather up and load all of the chickens that had died that week.
A one week dead chicken that has been steaming in Alabama July for a week is an olfactory joy. If you are a rabid mentally unstable red tick coon hound.
To all other sentinent creatures it smells.
Then off to the gator farm to feed the livestock.
Simple process, you dump the chickens and chuck them to the gators.
Did you know that when Gators get fed a lot they get big? I mean like really big? I guess an average gator is right around 8-9 feet long, these old boys were pushing twelve. They would hiss and snap and pop those chickens the way you or I would pop a grape. It was something I should probably tell my therapist about. If I had one.
Once the frenzy was over the owner, smiling wide enough that I could see his tooth, asked me If I would do just one more thing, since I was already there?
Sure. I mean, no problem Cleetus! Or whatever his name was.
He asked me ifn (is that really a word?) I would drive round the whole 12 acres and see ifn (crap) I could spot any dead gators. You gots to gets the skins offn em pretty gol-durned quick. I guess.
So, me and the kid (thats what they all called him, I am not sure ifn his name was “Kid” or he was just the youngest? he was about 45)
drove off to seek dead gators. I really wanted to find one. I had seen live gators, now I wanted to see a dead one.
Truth be told, I really wanted to touch one. I dont know why, I was very curious in my 20s.
And lo….. WE FOUND ONE! I was so excited! The kid was too, even though he didnt even blink, or smile, or move, or even glance at the dead Gator. I KNEW he was excited. Who wouldint be?!?!?
I knew it was dead because its fore legs and head were under water and its rear legs and tail were stretched up on the bank.
I watched it for 15 minutes. It didnt move, no bubbles, not a twitch. It was dead.
So I went to touch its tail.
Perfect chance, and every boys dream, touch a dead gator tail.
Just one second, what in the HELL was wrong with me?
Like I was saying, perfect chance.
I had it all planned out, I was going to saunter on down, bend, touch its tail, have the Kid snap a picture for proof and saunter back.
easy peasy.
this is the ironic part.
That stupid chicken eating reptilian ass-dodger was faking.
Faking. as in, not dead.
I bent down to touch its tail and a very small part of my brain screamed “WHAT THE HELL ARE YOU DOING!!!!”
That part of my brain picked up a rock and threw it at the Gators head.
We, that part of my Brain and I, were watching the rock slowly drift through the swamp water to the gators head
Its jaws snapped one inch from my face.
That fast.
I jumped straight back and straight up and landed on the hood of the car.
The Gator threw itself into the water and began to thrash and roll in a circle.
I think it thought it had got me.
I sat, very quietly and contemplated the irony of the situation.
The Kid, laconic and stoic, and I thought;  Mute.
Laughed so Hard I think he did himself an injury.
Tis ironic.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

A bit Chilly

THIS is my brother.
He kicks ass.
We are only 14 or so days apart and we don't look anything at all alike, I cant figure out if my Dad is his Dad or his Dad is my Dad? Since both of our Dads would Kick my ass I am not going to ask.
Neither will Shane.
We went on the Polar Bear Ride today.
For those of youse who don't indulge in freedom,aka, motorcycle riding. I shall explain.
The PBR is when a bunch of Motor Cycles and their Riders get together in the early spring and ride their motorcycles, try to keep warm, and show the world just how freaking awesome they are.
Cows around the world dread this Day.
(think about it)
Its a bit chilly.
My Genius wife kindly informed me right before we left this morning that with wind chill added in we would be riding in approximatively -2.
My other brother Darrell has been riding this ride with me for 6 years, but he was in Canada for work.
I bet he was sad.
Although Canada does have those cool loonies and toonies......
We left early and Shane forgot the cardinal rule about riding with Tom.
Dont Follow Tom.
NOT if you have a specific destination you want to arrive at.
I have the direction sense of a spoiled mango, I can barely feel gravity.
So we (I) got lost and we were late for the start.
Essentially we pulled up at the starting point just as the biggest group (3-400) was leaving. We had to pull in with the second group.
The second group was lame.
They were actually going the speed limit.
So when the DEMON DAMSELS passed us on the left I just tagged along.
I dont know if that was the name of their group, but they all had spiffy back patches that had a kneeling topless women on them.
They were all a bit on the large side.
One of them had a purse flying straight out behind her like a cape, she was my personal favorite.
The leader, a strapping lass, had about 6 inches of angry frozen red ass-crack showing.
She also had these weird hand signals, If I did not know any better I could have sworn she was calling to circle the wagons. Pretty sure it meant "EVIL MEN IN OUR MIDST" cause they took off.
Really Fast.
So I passed them with a cheery one finger wave and ventured ahead.
Shane pulled up next to me at this point.
He is a good brother.
We got to the Midway Point.
We got mauled by a mascot.
I did anyway.
This stuffed eagle in a leather Jacket ran up and Hugged me.
I don't know.
But the evil characters at Disneyland want to hug me as well.
There is a pattern here.

So Shane and I pow wowed and decided to go back to my house and play rock-band.
We couldn't feel our hands or faces anyways.

So we left.
and rode back.

It was a lot more fun then that.
We were riding back, Just us.
we got passed by a Corvette. acceptable.

we got passed by a mini-van. bearable

we got passed by a chevy aveo. HELL NO!

and as the driver of the cute little aveo passed us he gave me this look, the look I have always interpreted as "Please sir, I am in need of someone smashing my face with their fist, are you available?"
So we passed him. Then the mini-van.
I saw the vette.
and he saw me.
I will spare my wife any worry by avoiding telling you, dear reader, how fast 120 feels like.
Its so cool.
The wind blowing the other direction actually made it very difficult to hold my "I am a Bad ASS" pose as I passed the vette. But hey. It hurts to be cool. :)
Then Shane pulled up next to me.
Its good to have brothers that kick ass.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Licence to Practice

I hate going to the Doctor.
All they are going to give me is bad news, or at the very least soften the blow of bad news with a little good news.
"Yes Tom. you are broken but you have remarkable bone density for a man in his 50s"
Yeah?.? Its too bad I am 37.
It started when I dislocated my elbow. I had been on an arm wrestling binge and finished it out by loading concrete bags into a truck. Midway through a throw my elbow popped and my arm flopped uselessly on the end of a stab of pain.
Followed by more pain from laughing.
I promise, when you are throwing a 90 pound bag of concrete and completely by accident knock a fellow co-worker ass-over teakettle when it thumps him in the back, the look on his face is FUNNY!
When I recovered enough to apologize I flopped my arm in the direction of the car and had Franz drive Jared and I to the Clinic. Me, I was hoping he could just re-joint my elbow. Jared, well. Lets just say that as funny as it was, I was hoping for permanent brain damage. Sadly, he was completely OK. Which really was too bad.
 Cause I owed him money and I was hoping for at least some memory loss.
The Wife got there to sit with me and drive me home after the Doc fixed my floppy arm. It was taking a long time. Once the Doc found out that I was injured at work he discovered 3 new and previously unused machines that he just had to try.
Practicing his Medicine no doubt.
After the third life sucking torture device had been applied he came into the room and using the newest and most refined techniques on the cutting edge of medical practice, grabbed my hand and yanked.
I didn't pee myself. Just barely.
When I had recovered my composure to the point where I was able to wipe the drool off of my chin my very own self, he explained.
Doctor: Sorry about the pain, but I find its easier to just go for it. Too much talk and people have a tendency to tense up.
Me: mmmmphgahhhh
Wife: Thats ok, he is Tough. Is his elbow back into place?
Me: ackkk ackkk pthllbbbb
Doctor: Is he Ok?
Did I mention that I was drooling? From the Pain?
Dislocating was bad, relocating was 10 times worse.
The doctor did as Doctors do and pulled out a wad of test results and X-rays.
explain, explain, explain, blah blah blah blah and then the punch line....
"You know, when you construction worker types get into your 40s you really need to slow down,"
Wife:  um?
Me: achk achkkk acckhh I am 27 Asshole"
Doctor: Oh. oh my.
I guess I should not have expected much. I do look old, I realize this. Even then I did have access to a mirror. But it still stung a wee bit.
I hate going to the Doctor, they never have good news.
This past couple of years I have been developing pain. Cultivating it in my spare time. I was waiting for it to get huge enough to stand a chance of winning at the annual "Idiot Fair" Held in Des Moines.
Before I could even fill out the entry form the wife had made an appointment for me to see the Doc.
Oh well.
So I went in and gave him the litany.
It hurts here and here and here. But it really hurts here.
So, I guess they still haven't paid off the machines since I was here ten years ago. Cause they put me through all of them again. This time I got a full body deal.
Maybe there was a special?
Sitting in the waiting room with The Wife, waiting for the Doctor.
No doubt he was in the hall, practicing.
After an hour or six of waiting he comes in with enough paperwork and X rays that he apparently needed three assistants to help him carry it.

The Doc and Larry, Moe and Shemp crowded around the room and looked at me.
Waiting for Curly.
Curly arrived with a tray.
The music switched from calming new age to an ominous techno beat.
Before any one could say anything I blurted into the semi-silence
 "I am only 37"
The Doc and the stooges appeared flummoxed.
The Doc Cleared his adenoids and began...
"Did you play pro-football?"
um, no.
"Do you play competitive Rugby?"
HAH! no.
"Have you been in a high speed motorcycle or car accident in which you were ejected from the vehicle?"
um, not that I remember.
and they all looked at each other. Glances of concern from the stoodges and a worried little crease appearing on the doctors botoxed brow...
"You appear to be very healthy. Its just that."
and a very long pause.
"Well, to put it bluntly, You have the body of a retired rodeo clown."
I hate Doctors.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Black Irish

The title is misleading.
Tough tittie schmitty said the kitty.

This is actually an excerpt from a book I scribbled called "My Life as an Apron"
about my 10 years in Retail.

Things got boring pretty quick.
We had managed to hide pretty much all the evidence at this point and nothing was left to do except work.
Work, as all of us know, is to be avoided at all costs. So I started teaching the boys some Man Games.
My Uncle Hack invented Man Games, and I will glady kick the ass of anyone who says different.
His favorite was a manly feat of strength with a 20 lb sledge hammer and a beer.
It goes like this.
You hold the Beer in your Left hand.
With your right your grab the very end of the handle on a 20 pound sledge. (15 lb min)
You hoist the hammer up to shoulder height and hold your arm straight out from your body.
Without bending your arm or dropping it from below shoulder level you lower the head of the hammer down until it touches your nose.
Without bending your arm or lowering it at all you raise the hammer back up to starting position.
Then you drink the Beer.
Hack could do this all night. Sitting down.
I could do it three times.
Just enough to show the kids, then repeat. Then the "oh Yeah!"
Kelly tried first.
It was not a catostophic failure, but it was a near thing.
After his first try I made them hold their left hand in front of their faces to catch the Hammer when they dropped it.
We didnt have any Beer anyways.
Our Boss, Eric the Black irish came up and saw what we were doing.
Notably not impressed he growled at me to "Put the Hammer back and the rest of you monkeys get back to work".
He walked with me to the end of the store to put the Hammer back.
As soon as we were out of sight of the boys he asked me to show him how to do it. Then he demanded to know the trick.
The trick?
Try a lifetime of manuel labor.
Some trick.
So he had to give it a whril.
I really did try and talk him out of it. Eric the Black Irish was my favorite boss of all save one, and I still felt bad about beating him in the arm-wrestle.
Oh well.
I talked him into going down to the 15 lb from the 20.
This was a very good thing.
He refused to put his hand in front of his face and when his arm gave out he was not as Fast or as lucky as Kelly.
15 pounds of hammer dropped from two feet right between the eyes.
His head bouncing of the concrete floor would have hurt too.
had he been concious.
I thought it had killed him.
So I wiped my prints from the hammer and re-racked it
A demonstration, by me :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Making Loud noises

Ever blown anything up?
I am not talking about firecrackers.
For those of you that have known me for a long time, you were probably aware of this. For those of you who are just meeting me here ya go.
I like to blow stuff up.
Or as I shall refer to it henceforth "make really loud noises" to avoid being put on any sort of watch list.
Let me re-phrase.
To be put on ANY MORE watch lists.
I love Dry Ice.
It makes the best loud noises.
I even have a special recipe, after years (kid time, one summer) of testing I came up with three things.
1: Powder the Dry ice
2: Use cold water
3: Two liter bottles work, BUT, Listerine bottles are EXCEPTIONAL.
I won’t go into the details of the process of obtaining the un-obtanium on this list.
Watch list.
We used to make them at night after church activities in the summer. Praise God and blow stuff up.
Its an age old practice.
We launched a 50 gallon drum around 1/2 a minute high. It was dark and the drum was black and we couldn’t see it. It was in the air 1/2 a minute.
We had a pound of dry ice and a whole bunch of bottles. We had yet to figure out how perfectly they fit inside a mailbox, that was the next summer.
For this summer we were content to set them on the street or throw them in the air.
They are near as loud as Dynamite.

The group of us were making them and laughing and running and just being kids.
Every time a car would pull into the neighborhood we would scatter to shouts of "it’s a cop!" but it was all in fun. Never did any of us for a second think it actually was a cop.
We had just enough dry ice for two more noises but only one bottle, so we doubled up everything and screwed the lid down extra tight. We were in the road, two houses away from mine. We set the bottle down and ran across the street, the bottle rolled to the curb and just sat there.
wai..... Car coming into the neighborhood, shouts of "its a cop" accompanied by the sound of Air Jordan knockoffs (except for Darren, his were real) running away from the scene of the soon to be crime.
Our giggles and laughter turned to silence. It was a cop.

Hiding became paramount.
Its amazing how many kids can fit into a window well, especially when someone whose name I will not mentions runs into his house and LOCKS THE FREAKING DOOR!
Shit, Danny.
Leaving the rest of us to fend for ourselves as the killer of fun pulled slowly up to the curb.
Directly over the as of yet un-exploded noise maker.
we collectively whispered "oh shit"
The guardian of the peace flipped on his little spotlight and began to shine it hither and yon, looking for, no doubt, the source of the whispered scatological reference.
Remember in the Fire swamp?
You know, when Buttercup and Wesley are escaping from Prince Humperdinck?
The popping that comes right before the flames?
Seconds before a dry ice b..........
Sorry. Slip.
Seconds before the noise maker detonates it clicks.
It was clicking in the silence.
As the cop found us in his light, opened his door, started to put his foot on the ground....
It was loud.
Really really loud.
Its amazing how fast kids can get out of a window well.
Even more amazing is how many police and fire trucks and unmarked black helicopters responded.
It took me three hours to get home.
Every single back yard in the neighborhood felt my feet that night.
It was.


Not us, some other morons

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Civil Disobediance

I have problems with authority.
I should probably start a support group, or a biker gang.
It was bad when I was a wee-un.
Respect? For who? Some fat old dude that whistled when he breathed and smelled like unwashed lemming? Call him Mr? For what? Living?
Obedience? Just because he had a swell uniform and a silly hat? Wait a second, this is the same guy that got us lost and let us throw frozen cans of pork and beans and a can of mosquito repellent in the fire? I am supposed to "obey" him?
Believe? Why? Because she has hygiene issues and a hatred for children? Possibly feel saddened for the fact that her brain was frozen in 1971 and she hasn't learned a damn thing since? But Believe?
death first.
As I have gotten older I would like to say it has gotten better, that I toe the line with the best of them.
OOOOOO I am going to hell for even thinking that.
I have gotten worse.
A lot worse.
It probably started when a rookie cop beat the living shit out of me when I was 12, for walking on the side of the road. Or it could have been the fistfight with a teacher (he won) when I was fourteen. For saying that Reuben didn't throw the hot tamale at his head. (it was Matt, but I wasn't gonna tell him that)
No matter.
Its these fantastic things that form and shape a human, from a wee-un to a not so wee-un, almost a big-un.
I would say that I am all grown up but if you have read any of my blogs or spent more then an hour with me you would spot that lie in Milli-seconds. I dislike Grown-ups. Boring and staid. Concrete brains. Line followers and punctuation Nazis. LIVE A LITTLE people.
or just let me be.
Two years ago I was out with the Fam. Me and the Wife and the numbers 1 and 2.
My number 2 (the wee-un) is a mini-mommy that looks at the world in a way that no human could ever hope to understand. Picasso maybe, or possibly Dali, but they are both a little normal compared to #2.
#1 is perfect. A follower of rules and a respecter of humans. She amazes me.
We had just seen a movie and enjoyed a pizza at the CPK.
Walking back to the car, well, the wife and #1 were walking. #2 and I were having a skipping contest and she was kicking my ass. I may be a rebel but I cant skip for jack turd.
We came to the escalators.
You know. Moving stairs. Fat America HELLO!
So I yelled to #1 "RACE ME DOWN"
The wife and #2 waited for us at the bottom.
#2 yelled "GO" and we goeth. #1 down the down and me down the up.
I mean really, its only fair.
It was a close race. #1 is fleet of foot and stretched out to break the tape milliseconds before me, A photo finish. Phelps and his fingernail could not have been any closer.
We were laughing and just living. Smiling even.
Then Bluto the Fat American security guard had to whip out his wee teenier and pee on our campfire.
He was pointing at me, I gave him my best innocent face (sneer) and said "Fuck that" and grabbing #1s hand sprinted away from the chubby with a star.
Two fine upstanding police officers of the law chose this moment to walk around the corner.
So chubby, winded after his 25 foot sprint/roll wheezed at them "stop that guy!" and pointed his whole fat hand right at me.
I gripped #1s hand and really sprinted. It was hard, I was laughing and she was having hysterics.
as we passed the other 2 who were (wisely) pretending not to know us I underhanded wife the car keys and said "pick us up, bottom level" sotto voice.
The porkers were gaining at this point so we took evasive action, ducking and dodging in between cars and floors and eventually we pulled the old "hide behind this corner and let the flatties run by oblivious" trick.
Its only failed me once.
Not this time.
With my hand over #1s mouth to keep her absolute terror quiet, they ran right on by.
We started doing our best nonchalant walk back up the ramp and wife and #2 pulled up.
At this point I should be able to drop a pithy saying to tie it all together and leave you laughing for the next few minutes.
Sorry, maybe next blog. We were fugitives, and chubby was not going to let us go so easy.
They were stopping cars and shining flashlights into faces.
This may be the understatement of the year when I say I don't Blend in. This night my hair, very long, was loose and I had on a masculine Salmon (BrightFCKNpink) shirt. No blending.
Thinking quick I made #1 take of her lime green tank top thingy that she had on over her shirt and #2 handed over a spare pony (silver and glittery) for me to tie my hair back.
So, dressed to the nines in space traveling transvestite fashion, we passed the inspection.
Tom Cruise magic saved us.
The gestapo was foiled and we sailed out into freedom.
I laughed all the way home, #1 had absolute hysterics and #2 lamented that she had not been able to trip the police chaps. Wife just smiled and shook her head gently.
Live a bit Today Folks.

Sunday, March 13, 2011


I used to have normal Nipples.
That sounds so odd doesn't it? I mean, really, Nipples?
Oh for Hell's sake!
Its true though. My nipples used to be normal.
They stood at attention when they got cold and bled if they got cut or twisted off (thank you darling little 9th grade girlfriend) and they even looked fairly normal.
Then I decided to be "fit"
The first time I ran 10 miles they were bleeding. From rubbing against my t-shirt. Two important things I learned from that.
1: Bandaids can be preventive medication
2: Running SUCKS
Scabbed nipples is a very odd experience. At least for me it was. One that I did not care to repeat.
Karma-man hates me.
Enter the triathlon coach.
He was not my coach and never will be. In fact if I ever see him again I am going to twist one of his nipples off.
We were standing next to each other at the Scofield triathlon start. I was having a rough time getting my wet-suit on. Which is typical when the wet-suits are made for little teenier tiny humans that have wee little 34 inch chests and 14 inch biceps. For the love of Paul Bunyan! My forearms are 14 inches, geeez.
Anyways he looks over and seeing me wiggling into my sausage case with extreme difficulty says "You know, it goes on and comes off a lot easier if you don't have any body hair"
Its probably a gift from my Polynesian heritage but I have never had a lot of body hair. Its not very masculine to admit this, but I just havent had much.
No gorilla back or bird nest belly. In fact, the body hair I did have was lightish in color and sparse. Very sparse.
However. I am dumb.
At the next triathlon I decided to be chest hair free.
No razors, I didnt want it growing back in a thatch of black wire.
I discovered this product called NAIR.

Its this sort of horrific acid that you put on hairy spots and it painlessly eats the hair.
No razor burn or cuts or nicks.
Just a smooth wet-suit slipping expanse of hair free chest.
I was so pleased with myself.
I sent the fam out to the pool so I could have some privacy to rid myself of hair the night before the start.
I read the instructions carefully and then carefully spread the goo over my chest from the shoulders down. Waited the proscribed amount of time and then carefully used the little shovel thingy to scrape the goo off.
Still had hair.
I ignored the instructions and spread the noxious crap as thickly as I could over the trouble spots. Mainly around my nipples and then I waited. Double the time.
It was itching a little when I scraped it off, but I was hair free.
It felt a little sticky, my chest did, when I put the wetsuit on the next morning. The water was cold enough that I was able to ignore the itching during the swim.
It had slipped on wonderfully.
Getting out of the water I unzipped the back and held out my arms for the yanker (some sweet old fit lady helping us get our sausage cases off) to yank. She yanked.
The wetsuit came off as slick as lard on a cookie sheet.
So did the top sixteen layers of my chest skin.
Nipples included.
I screamed right in her face. Loud. High Pitched and warbling.
We were both surprised.
I finished the triathlon shirtless, and skinless.
They have never been the same.
My Nipples.
They stand up all the time now. No matter what.
I think they might be afraid of what I may try next.
I know I am.


I have a really hard time making my kids go to school.
School is dumb.
Bad Dad.
I know.
Its just that I am not impressed with teachers.
Never have been.
I had some good ones, even a couple of great ones.
but mostly, some really weird people end up as teachers.
Its a thankless, monotonous, painful job.
And its 99 percent bullshit.
I flunked out of middle school
A lot of people wondered why I went to Jordan instead of Hillcrest, Its no mystery.
It was either that or detention.
Hillcrest would not take me.
Perhaps blowing up the chemistry lab had something to do with that.....
It really was an accident. Sort of.
Or maybe it was when Roger and I launched a model Rocket engine equipped Derby car down the hall.
No one was in any danger, the school was evacuated at the time for a gas leak. A real gas leak, but I had NOTHING to do with that.
Geez, that Frau Doctor Schmidt (may she burn in Nazi Hell) had NO sense of humor.
I admit freely that I was a terrible student. I never paid attention in class, I refused to do homework and if it got too bad, I would just leave.
Stand up in class and walk out.
Walk down the halls and out the door.
Then walkabout for a bit.
Walk down the road to the elementary school and visit my Brother, Hang out inside the giant tire and read a few library books.
Adults are so oblivious.
I would disappear in the middle of the day and show up, you know, whenever.
After a while I didn't even bother to hide it. Just walk out. Do my own thing.
Caught a snake one day.
Walking along the side of the canal.
Just glanced down and saw its head and thought about leaving it in my Brothers lunch-box.
Oh the cleverness of me!
 I was already chuckling at the look on his face.
To think is to act, So, quick as thought I reached down and grabbed it. Right behind its neck.
It wrapped around my arm so fast I almost did not notice the rattles at the end.
God loves morons.

By pure blind luck I had grabbed so close behind its head that it couldn't bite me.
five rattles.
Then it peed on me, and pooped. And it smelled and felt awful.
But even at the young age of 13 I was pretty sure dying would be worse.
So I hung on, arm as straight as I could make it, getting those fangs and creepy wicked looking tongue as far away from me as possible.
Sat down on the banks of the canal and had a good PMC.
(poor me cry)
Then I smashed its head with a rock and threw its body as far as I could.
Walked home.
Did I learn my lesson? See the underlying moral fable in my encounter with the serpent while I was supposed to be in school gaining invaluable knowledge and perhaps unlocking the mysteries of math?
Knowledge that may have been valuable later in life? Important life altering things. Like the difference between a TSP and a TBSP?
Bad teachers.
What do we expect? We don't pay enough for good ones.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

MATH it does a body good

The very first word of anything is always the hardest for me. It will either catch an audience or turn them away. Whether it is writing, speaking or singing it’s all the same. It’s that very first word that matters.
That’s why I grunt so much.
I finish triathlons, I would love to say that I “Race” or that I “Compete” but compared to the wee little elves that actually do these things, I am a scary oversized puffing and slobbering Troll.
They actually have a special class for guys like me.
Just like in school.
They call it Clydesdale.
For Hell's sake!
I would prefer Hercules or Goliath or even Ogre.
Nope, Clydesdale.
It used to be anything over 200 lbs., so I dieted until I thought I was going to blow away in the wind and the powers that be changed it to 195 lbs.
They had a weigh in.
198 pounds.
Then they write it on your leg.
So all the little gazelles that pass me know, Fat Ass.
I can hear them smirking at me as they bounce by with their effortless strides, gravity hardly pulling at them at all. I used to throw rocks at them. But I had a really difficult time hiding the body of the last one.
So now I just yell “OH YEAH!!!!!!” in a really mean voice.

It’s all I got.

My nephew (a gazelle) started finishing them with me. I could beat him by a few minutes but only because he couldn’t swim.
Bobbing along in the current dog-paddling does not make for an excellent swim time.
But man, the kid can run. Averaging a 5 ½ minute mile. That’s after the swim and the bike.
Then he beat me. By 8 minutes.
Desperate times etc etc.
I read an article that ascertained that for every pound you dropped you could shave one minute off your finishing times. He had beaten me by 8 minutes, so I did the math and discovered that I needed to lose 12 pounds. (Really bad at math)
Then I read another article, in another  magazine. It’s far too disgusting to ever repeat in any sort of English speaking company.
If you have a weak stomach stop HERE.

Colon Cleansing.

Apparently all of us carry all sorts of vile and unspeakable things about in our colons. Old food, Plaque, Bugs and yucky stuff of all description.
Then I got really excited because it says that the “average person” has about ten pounds of vile in their colon at any given time.
Problem solved. I am not average. So I figured 12 pounds was as good as gone.

 The Cleanse
It sounds really ominous. Say it out loud in a raspy breathy Darth Vader voice and it sounds exactly like I felt going into it.
It wasn’t that bad.
It was just a seven day deal. I didn’t eat anything at all for seven days. I had to drink this magic potion to help speed things along, but it really was not that bad.
Juice of two lemons
One tbsp. of grade B maple syrup
Cheyenne pepper to taste.
In a Nalgene bottle of Distilled water.
For seven days.
Day 8 was the Kicker. And day nine was the race.
God made the world in 6 days, I made a lot of ahem poo.
It’s amazing actually. I wasn’t eating anything and I was still producing poundage.
It’s the magic poo potion that does it.

Day Seven.
The cleanse instructions said to mix 2.5 TSPs of non-iodized salt with one gallon of warm water and drink the whole thing.
No problem.
I failed Home Economics. Stitched my finger to my sachet and caught the oven thingy on fire somehow, Failed with an F. And Math? Who needs Math? That’s why God invented calculators. (Really, I am horrible at Math)
FYI: 1 tablespoon (tbsp) equals 3 teaspoons (tsp)

A TSP is apparently 
different from a TBSP!

Who knew?

So, two giant heaping TBSPs of salt, then a level One cause I couldn’t just fill it half way. Mixed in a gallon of warm water and guzzled. Gagging, coughing, groaning and retching. But I swallered it all. And I kept it down.
God created the world in 6 days then took a day off to sleep.
I created poo for seven days. Then I exploded.
The instructions read something like “After completing the seven day pre-cleanse you will be ready for a gentle salt laxative. This will clean the walls of your colon and finish your cleanse”
Slap me with a giant roasted buffalo.
I thought I was pretty much empty by this point. I had lost ten pounds of vile and was sitting at 196, fighting weight. I figured with the “gentle cleanse” I would expel those last two pounds and slaughter the nephew come day nine.
Shit. And more shit.
Then things that I don’t even like to think about. Then my appendix and I am pretty sure my other tonsil. Bugs critters and stuff that was supposed to stay in came out.
For 14 very long hours.
I lost the weight.
183 lbs. morning of race.
I finished the triathlon. Not dead last. Just dead.
The nephew dog paddled and sprinted his way to beating me by 16 minutes.

Boy,  was I clean.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


I don’t sleep much.
 Not really.  5-6 hours a night is more than enough for me to function semi-normally. Semi only because I could sleep for a year or two and still not behave “normally”
I read an article in the 8th Grade about how much of our lives we spend in bed, sleeping.
It’s A LOT.
It had a profound effect on me.
 I just quit sleeping. I would go go go until I pretty much passed out from exhaustion.  Or I would just sleep during school. I figured why not? It’s not like I was doing anything important. Life is pretty short, too short to sleep through.
Fast forward a dozen years or so, and suddenly the habit of not sleeping becomes a concern and a problem.  One of those things that seem normal to me but all of a sudden it seems to the people around me that something is “wrong”.   like all of us are bombarded constantly by things that tell us we are sick, we need drugs, we want to be normal we want to be normal. Billboards, commercials and advertisements selling wellness. 
What a crock of shit.
I fell for it. Hard. Went to five different doctors to find out what was “wrong” with me and they all got a chance to practice their witch doctor hoodoo voodoo on me.  All I got out of all of it was a sense of panic and a prescription for AMBIEN. It’s a sleep drug, helps you sleep. They say. Knocks your ass out is what it does.
It works really really well.
Then I started having weirdness.
Waking up in strange places. It wasn’t every day, but it was strange.
I woke up at 330 am in my truck at short term parking in the airport. I woke up walking down the street by my house holding a dog leash with no dog.  I woke up on the sidewalk in front of my old best friends house with truck keys in my hand and no truck in sight.
And then.
I woke up naked on a bench in a strange gym.
At 3 in the morning.
This was something that most certainly was not covered in the boy scouts handbook.
I searched the lockers until I found an abandoned towel, I was hoping for my clothes or keys or phone but no such luck.
 A towel is what I got.
  Clad thusly in towel I ventured out into the gym. It was mostly empty, a few fellow insomniacs (pre-Ambien) working out and a pretty little girl at the desk.
 With really big startled looking eyes.
 I approached her a little warily; she was looking at me kind of funny. The conversation went something like this.
Naked but for a towel me: HI!
Desk Girl with Big Startled Eyes:
Nbfatm: um, did you see me come in?
DGwBSE: a nod
Nbfatm: Great! Um, did I have clothes on?
DGwBSE: a nod
Nbfatm: Excellent! Did you notice if I had a bag?
DGwBSE: a nod, then a point
With a rapid turn I followed her finger direction and saw Child #1s school bag leaned against a wall. Snatching it up I discovered a padlock key and my shirt inside. I went back into the locker room and found the little pink heart padlock that matched the key and discovered some clothes, my keys, my phone and a DVD.
Two problems.
No pants, and I had never seen the DVD before. “Bad Boys 2” was not really on my must see list.
I put on the clothes I had and clad in my (it was mine now) towel and wearing a child’s backpack strode confidently (right) out to the desk again.
Partially Clad me: Hi
PCm: Um, by any chance did I take my pants off out here?
DGwBSE: Huge emphatic nod and another point.
I followed the point and found my pants. Safe and sound folded neatly on the leg press.
Three things.
 I never have been back to that Gym, I quit Ambien cold turkey, insomnia is FUN. Oh, and the movie?
 Really sucks.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Fights is Fun

Before reading further be warned.
If you are a pacifist, peace-loving,turn the other cheek or Amish person. THIS WILL OFFEND YOU.
Moving right along. I think fights is fun.
Yelling back and forth at one another, trading verbal jabs and saying snide things. That is not a fight.
That is arguing. It can escalate to a fight, but mostly in todays oh so modern and peacified society everyone seems to think it is perfectly ok to yell at other people.
Its not.
Yelling is not fighting, its yelling. Saying shitty spiteful things to people is not fighting, its shitty. Goading someone into physical violence does not show how awesome you are. Rather, it shows that Darwin was right. Only in todays land of make believe we protect the weak little smart-asses that would have been beaten to death as children in a real world. 
Before litigation and the outlawing of fistcuffs, people were exceedingly polite to each other. Really, you had to be. Even in the 40s and 50s a punch in the mouth was something a wise-ass could expect. 
People were nicer.
All that being said, lets talk about fights.
A fight is when two folks get together and air out their differences by smacking each other with available body parts. Fists, hands, Heads, Knees and Feets are all legitiment tactics.
Training in a fighting style is also perfectly legal in Tom-land.
Its a fight as long as you get the chance to do as much damage to your opponent as he gets to do to you.
On a side note.
Yes, women can fight. I prefer that they do not but I am very liberal in this respect. However I will never hit a women or allow any man in my vicinity to do so.
Its in my Blood. 
Even hearing about a man roughing up a women gets me nigh unto berserker rage.
onwards then.
One of the best fights I ever got in I lost. 
I was in line to go to a haunted house, along with hundreds of other people all jostling each other.
I jostled up against a Samoan guy about my size, he gave me the stink eye so I stink eyed right back.
No words were exchanged, he just pushed my chest with his open hand so I popped him on the eye. I would love to say that I won, I really would. But I hit that guy as many times and as hard as I could, in the head in the face in the stomach and chest and he just took it, waited, then cracked me on the forehead. 
Son of a brother celibate nun! 
That hurt. I slowed down a bit but I kept hitting him, then he cracked me on the forehead again!
The celibate nun was tap dancing in my head.
So i put everything I had into a flying super-human strength monster punch to the face. Pulled my fist right out of orbit and dropped it on him like a meteor.
He blinked twice. Shook his head a little bit,and started laughing.
So I held up my hand and said ok ok ok.
Still Laughing he said . "That was a pretty good shot" and hugged me. 
His name is Raymond Latului, we got to be really good friends. 
But thats what fights is.
You win some and you lose some.
You learn to be polite really quickly around guys that will break your nose for an insult.
Pavlov and his freaking Dogs.
Todays society has created the super asshole. These weasely guys that whine and yelll and complain about everything. They bluster and threaten and intimidate. They yell and curse and make obscene gestures from the safety of their cars.
They believe that they are immune to physical violence. They have the law and society firmly in their corner.
I hope for the sake of the rest of us that one day they run into a Neanderthal like me.
Its fair, they can fight back and win. Maybe they can back their mouth with fists of fury.
I doubt it.
But they get the chance.

Sunday, March 6, 2011


Everywhere I have ever been has a "Mountain View" street.
Even in Georgia, I stood on a street called Mountain View and strained my eyes looking for even a large hill, let alone a mountain.
They still had the street.
I get this feeling that a lot of names get reused like this, take for instance "Widow Maker" if everything that bore that name actually caused some sad and lonely women to minus a husband.......
There would be a lot more cougar activity at the local bar scenes.
Ok, bad joke.
But really, Widow Maker? A thing that kills husbands, usually a steep hill or mountain that men, presumably husbands try and ride motorcycles/cars/dune buggies/pogo sticks and all other manner of loco-motion up.
I assume it makes sense.
This post has nothing whatsoever to do with going up a mountain.
Well, we did have to hike back up after, but this memory has nothing to do with going up.
It has everything to do with going down.
And the hill was named "Widow Maker".
The whole "How it got started?" is fuzzy to me, I remember Mark (his real name) picking me up in his two wheel drive truck and making two stops.

The costume/wardrobe closet at the high school he was attending and that I had recently been kicked out of. (graduated) To stock up on ridiculous coats. His was a bright plaid and mine was lime-ish greenish.

K mart, where we pooled our money and bought a sled. 4 dollars.

It was orange and plastic.
It rocked.

Then we drove down south to the "Point of the Mountain". back in these, Ye olde days, there were no homes out there. People still wanted to live on flat ground and not perched up on cliffs like the Anasazi.
I digress.
We drove to the top of the local "Widow Maker" Being unmarried we knew we were safe.
Walked to the edge and looked down.
Holy narking frozen shit balls.
Straight down about sums it up.
So, we braced the sled on the edge, I got in first and braced my feet to either side, Mark said something witty and got in the front.
I would like to point out at this time for you  to remember "Its only Gay if you make eye contact"
We balanced on the edge and.....
I lifted up my feet
we were at the bottom.
That fast.
I had frozen tears blown back from my eyes and a faint recollection of speed. Our manly screams were still echoing from the surrounding peaks.
It took us an hour and a half to hike back up.
Our second run was even faster.
The tree didn't even slow us down.
It was a spindly little thing, only about ten feet tall and 8 inches around at the base.
We hit it dead center near the bottom of the mountain.
Snapped it clean off at the base and went right over it.
Our super manly screams of terror turned into relieved laughter as we heard it snap.
2 hours this time. All the way to the top and fading light lent us speed.
Entering our supersonic kick-ass sled contrivance Mark said "Hey, I think there is a drop off down there"
I glanced down, It did indeed appear that the mountain fell away into a crevice near the bottom, but being wise in the ways of distance and mirage in fading light I growled "optical illusion" and clambered aboard.
Once again, the brace, the balance, the lifting of the feet and.....
Unreal speed.
Barely able to see I glimpsed the mirage coming up.
I have mentioned that I am dumb? Right?
We sailed out into open air, 20, 30, 40 feet in a blink.
We did not launch, the mountain just dropped away under us.
We flew.
Important safety tip.
Sleds do not fly well, they land worse.
It was a very very long hike back to the truck.