November 2008

I made it to Michigan OK, albeit slightly sore in the gluteus extramaximus region. 13 hours in a car will do that to one.

Thanksgiving was celebrated with my dad’s family. He’s the oldest of 5, and most were there with Grandma and lots of cousins and little nieces and nephlets. My aunt works for a school, and gets to rent one of their buildings really cheap for the holiday shindigs – kitchen, cafeteria, bathrooms, and gym for the younglings – it’s a pretty sweet setup. Nobody’s crowded, there’s nobody napping on the couch and hogging up 3 seats, and you’re not waiting for everyone to leave your house so you can get on with lounging.

In case your history is fuzzy, here’s the text of the Thanksgiving proclamation that made it an official US holiday. READ IT! Thanks Abe – another of the awesome things you did!

Off to see a movie with my sister – enjoy your evening!


Seagulls in Florida, who really like Goldfish crackersOh geez, where do I start. Look! I just did. There, hard part done. Nothin’ to it, this starting of things.

It’s finishing things I’m bad at. And when I say bad, I mean bad like a retarded epileptic quadriplegic house painter. The kind you feel bad for, until you realize it’s your house he’s painting. Then you clear your throat meaningfully and make broad hints that maybe you’d rather just finish it yourself, if it’s not too much trouble.

My divorce was final last month. I didn’t celebrate, because it’s a death in the family. Promises of forever and no matter what got sick many years ago, and after several rounds of chemotherapy, radiation, amputation, and reattachment, the patient succumbed to the cancer of fuckit. Marriage is like a race with no finish line, no witnesses to the really hard hilly parts, no referees, and you only win if your partner says you do. Which is nigh impossible with a dreadfully pessimistic control-minded narcissist as a partner. A joyful, educational, worthwhile, sorrowful, and costly 18 years have come to an end. I’ve come to terms with it, but it still sucks. It sucks all the more when the ex calls in her bi-polar fashion, happy and reasonable one minute, and moaning and wailing the very next. There’s no end to the emotional and financial bills she tries to present to me. Usually via 2 emails and 6 calls to my cell phone each day. It was worse when we were married, if you can believe that.

I’m going back to my old home state this week for Thanksgiving and to see friends & family. Driving this time, because it makes more financial sense – I’ll lose 14 hours of my time with driving, but won’t have to be herded through a line like a cow at the end of its moos, or rent a car, or be very careful about my schedule. So I’m almost looking forward to it. Plus which, there’s time with friends and family at the middle, so I have that going for me.

We had Thanksgiving at the Tiny House last night, because we won’t be all together for the Day Of. I’m very grateful for a gracious and flexible new family, a house overflowing with love, understanding, acceptance, and a fun grip on reality. We sing songs here, making up the words as we go. We cook really good food, and share it generously. We enjoy the everlovin’ snot outta life, and I want to live it all. Gone are the days of looking for an excuse to be elsewhere.

It’s not very often I sit down to write anymore.

I miss it. So I’m accepting the latest challenge at Wordsmiths, to get a story out by month’s end. That’s the outfit that got me into blogging in the first place, and I still hold my blog friends some of my favorite people on the planet. There’s all kinds of busy-ness and catching up that seems to creep ahead of my blog-time. Like installing a new over-the-stove microwave, trying church for the first time in a long while, and battening down the pre-winter hatches. Oh and that pesky work stuff.

Stay tuned. And keep writing.

Oh gosh, time flies when you keep living. It’s been a huge week and huger weekend, and there is much to share – hope I can get the high points in before supper is done, gone, digested, and flushed. That’s my ambitious goal.

There’s a bunch I left out of my last post on the fishing trip, but the weekend deserves its own post. So I’ll presume to send those nuggets about my dad’s visit, a potato volcano, and sinking a boat into the future, where they’ll be told in embarrassing detail.

We just finished up the Great Halloween Party Weekend (AKA Tiffoween), and it was a blast. I used to go trick-or-treating as a kid, just like almost all of my peers, and it was fun kid stuff. There were about 5-6 years where I felt I’d outgrown it, and then was persuaded that it’s the devil’s holiday and opted out for about 18 years. A couple years ago, some good friends changed my mind by throwing a rockin’ good party, costumes and beer and food and all, and there wasn’t the least hint of devil worship. I decided holidays are what you make of them – which has always been the case.

We decided to host our OWN party, both because we like people and parties, and so we wouldn’t have the problem of finding something to do, and upon finding it, figuring how to get home safely if it turned out to be a drinkin’ event. We bought and built decorations, costumes, food (and forgot some of it), and got lots to drink. There was an inflatable ghost coming out of the chimney, a giant hairy spider in a giant custom web on the porch, a nearly complete Nightmare Before Christmas village, flaming things, and a Scream-faced ghost hiding behind the bathroom door. There was a cauldron of cider with steamy, bubbly dry ice (we forgot to put in the ice hands we made). Grilled chicken, mummy dogs, boo-cookies, fresh asparagus, Wordnerd’s Onion Souffle, and all kinds of finger food. Nobody went hungry.

As for the guests, we had several non-bloggers as well as the famous and fabulous Kenju, Farrago, Mojo, and of course Tiff. In all, we had about half the guests who said they’d come, and it was a good party. Tiff’s brother won the Scariest costume prize as some sort of sponge-faced pale monster, Farrago won the Came the Farthest (Furthest?) and Funniest prize as a 70’s porn star (Pat, as a very convincing buck-toothed redneck hick, was pretty damn funny too). Kenju makes an adorable witch, and Mr. Kenju is a believable retired Sherlock Holmes. Tiff and I went as 1600’s-era Scottish Highlanders.

(all photos have been altered to protect identities/ aliases)

My neighbor dropped off a large load of firewood last week, and after splitting and stacking it, I figured there was enough for a month. Turns out, when you have guys who like their fires hot enough to melt glass, it lasts one weekend. We enjoyed our various drinks on a beautiful night with a roaring blaze. From the gate, I heard a timid, ‘Excuse me?’ It was a neighbor from up the street, saying her guests all went home and could she come in?

Of course.

Turns out, she had lots to drink before arriving, and had even more to say. She related the story of a couch she got, and how her teenage son commented on how it looked like a porn couch. She appeared to be aghast that he, the innocent snowflake, would know what a porn couch looks like. The same snowflake who’s allowed to spend the night with his girlfriend (as long as there was a third person in the room – a friggin’ GUARANTEE of innocence, amiright?). The more she talked, the more everyone engaged the logic, and the more defensive and earnest she became. It was like heaping logs on the fire (which we did) and every word became increasingly hilarious. Pat was dancing around doing the hand motions to the ‘Erase! Erase! Erase! song, which he wrote and sang on the spot, and at one point someone blurted, “Just stop talking.” When she didn’t, a nanosecond later, she heard, “Jeebus! You can’t shut up, can you?!” The Porn Couch was the subject for nearly an hour, enough to become Tiffoween Legend.

Along this point in the festivities, enough spirits were released and consumed to make walking… a challenge. My chair even betrayed me. I went to sit down after tossing another cuppa two tree logs on the fire, and a metal leg dug into the sod, bent, and tipped me over backwards. My heels and kilt went flying overhead, and while I struggled to get myself upright, I heard Farrago’s somber words: “I just saw your junk.”

I was grateful for being a bit inebriated, because folks – that could have been embarrassing.

The party wound down in the wee hours (two? three?) and all were safely home by the time I hit my comfy pillow.

There’s much to relate about Saturday too, what with breakfast and hangovers and spud guns and chili. I’ll save that for the next post. Your stories go in the comments, don’t be stingy!