Humor

Total Eclipse of the Part

The Perseid Meteor showers are gracing our skies this weekend. YouTube conspiracists promise the brightest showing in modern history sprinkled with end-of-all-humanity. I haven’t bothered to Google the event because it is partly cloudy here and I probably won’t get to see the action. Plus, we are only on Episode 9 of Season 3 in The Flash. The binge watch is real. I have become addicted to the characters more so than the plot lines but it is a fun show with some good complexity so I will keep watching. My dishes may lie dirty in the sink. My laundry may live in limbo between the floor and the dryer. My friends and family may report me missing and fear I have died but I know one thing… I will find out if Barry and Iris are really meant to be. This means that I probably will fail to notice the setting sun and I will wake up in the recliner, having completely missed the world’s most impressive meteor shower. Thank you Netflix.

That will be okay because on August 21st there will be a full solar eclipse. I plan on watching that event with my family. Our only decision to make regarding the solar eclipse is where we are going to watch and how we can avoid being part of an Interstate National Disaster. Experts expect millions of people to flock to the “Totality” zone where the eclipse will be an absolute darkening of the sun instead of 90% in the 100 miles adjacent. The ensuing traffic jam promises to become a disaster urban legend. I must decide if we will brave the migration of sky-watchers or settle for something less than amazing. My track record suggests the latter. I buy generic coffee for my Keurig because it is “good enough”. We clean out our van when we become unsure of “that crunching sound”. We are, generally, terrible at self-motivation and superstars at procrastination. (I’ll write a blog on that topic tomorrow.)

Not this year. We are cramming in some quality family memories. We are going to Disney in October. That should be amazing and exhausting. We will take pictures with every character that we encounter. We will buy the fifty-dollar, plastic and felt Mickey Ears Hat. We will be the best parents that selective photo posts on Facebook will allow.

As a warm-up, we are going to watch the solar eclipse in nine days. We might even try for a dinner together as a family afterwards. Anything is possible. No pain no gains.

I’m excited about the solar eclipse. I hope it makes a special memory for the girls and they aren’t preoccupied with having to go pee or wanting to listen to silly songs on XM radio. That is expecting a lot from a demographic group that mistreats toys but insist on playing for hours with empty Tupperware. Maybe the memory will be more powerful in their future adult brains.

I remember the first time that celestial objects seemed like real things. Not just bright spots in the sky. My sister and I went with our Grandmother on a road trip to Indiana to visit family. My Aunt and Uncle had a really cool house with a heated pool and a next-door neighbor who played football for the Colts. One night we were in the backyard laying on the trampoline, staring at the stars. My uncle pointed out a star that was moving faster than the other stars across the sky. “That’s a satellite”, he told me. It was a cool moment. It moved space and satellites from something imaginary to something I could observe and understand. We watched at least ten more objects coast across the sky over the next couple of hours. I hope the eclipse will do something similar for my girls. Of course, I will probably leave out all the dirty jokes my uncle was telling while we stared up at the heavens. I doubt the girls would appreciate tales of frogs who perform sexual favors or dogs who lick themselves and the old men who say, “You better pet him first.” I thought the jokes were hilarious. They were a hit at school later that fall. Thanks Uncle J.

If you enjoy the wonders of the cosmos and dirty jokes, this post is for you. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Late Night Raid

Sometimes my analytical mind gets me into trouble. I reason through problems, unchecked by pesky facts. As long as my thoughts are logical from one point to the next then I feel reasonably satisfied that the end result will be okay. That is not always a reasonable assumption.

Example.

I know that the exterior doors on my house have weather stripping to prevent air leakage from inside to outside. Those plastic-coated foam inserts seat firmly against the door and keep cooling costs to a minimum. Surely there is not a better seal available outside of bank vaults and the doors on aircraft. Air tight.

I also know that there are spiders in my garage. I walk into webs every time that I decide to go outside to find a tool (Allen Wrench) to repair a household item (stop the squeaking of children’s furniture). The spiders live in every crack and crevice. I know that dispersing a gas and allowing it to soak into each crack and crevice might be an effective approach.

I also know that the warning on Raid Bug Bombs suggests that “people and pets be removed from the residence for a period of not less than four hours” and that “upon returning to the residence, ventilate area for a minimum of thirty minutes”. A powerful warning and wise advice.

However, I remembered that the door to my garage has weather stripping and there are spiders in my garage. These two facts made me confident that I could disregard the instructions on a Raid Bug Bomb because, thanks to the door, my garage is outside my house. A) House is safe. B) Spiders must die. Thereby and heretofore there is no actual threat to the pets and residents inside the house and insofarsuchto the arachnids will perish.

Now, I know what you are thinking. Holy shit dude. What if some of that bug nerve gas seeps in through the cracks in the weather stripping around that air-tight door? It could wipe out your entire family. Not a problem. I learned enough in my freshman year of college to understand how to correctly tape the edge of a door frame. My RA didn’t smell any pot. These bugs will be sealed to their fates. Which I did with packing tape right after I deployed the Bug Bomb in the garage at 7:00 p.m. on a Tuesday night while the dog and children played in the nearby living room. Yay! I make decisions!

The moment that the last piece of door tape had been applied I started to have second thoughts. Maybe they could be described more accurately as Delayed-First-Thoughts. Thing like, “Hmmm, is this a good idea?” and “Maybe 7:00 at night was a bit late in the day for an experiment.” I began to implement some additional safety measures. I decreed the bonus room as off-limits because it was directly above the garage. I started to think about the attic space not being separated from the garage at the soffits. I began to think about the fan for the air conditioner that was located in the attic and how the aluminum cover on the circulation unit is not exactly air-tight. I became convinced that I had not only accidentally exposed my family to a deadly nerve agent but that I had injected this poison with ninja-like precision. I started having ghost pains in my chest.

Thirty minutes later, while walking through the living room, I smelled a faint odor of fresh flowers. Similar to using six dryer sheets with a load of towels on high heat.

“Hey Supermom…”

“What?”, with an eyeroll.

“Walk by the stairs and tell me if you notice anything.”

Big sigh as she sets down her Kindle, “Hmmm, not really.”

“Do you smell something like dryer sheets?”

“Sort of. I don’t know. Maybe.”

I decided that to be safe I would venture outside and walk by the garage to see if any similar odors were present. They were. Strongly. Bigly.

Fuck.

I went back into the house. “Honey. Get the kids dressed and grab some iPads.”

“Where are we going?”

“Walmart parking lot for three hours I guess.”

“What about the dog?”

“We rescued her and let her sleep at the foot of our bed. It’s been a good life. If she doesn’t make it then that is a burden I will have to bear.”

“Okay.” Shoulder shrug.

 

So… we evacuated our house to Walmart parking-lot-purgatory while Supermom read her kindle and wondered why she married me or allowed me to reproduce with her so often. After about an hour we had all had enough and decided to return home and welcome death with open arms.

Upside – The house smelled amazing and the spiders in the garage were definitely dead. Live and learn.

If you are an idiot and bug bombed your residence with a total disregard for safety or directions, this post is for you. I hope you killed your spiders. You’re welcome.

 

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Party Pegasus

Lady Bug recently had her birthday weekend. A two day run of festivities. We celebrated the birthday weekend because of parenting guilt for not preparing a party or bothering to bake a cake. In fact, we had no real plans for how to celebrate with our four-year-old until about two days before her big event.

As the day broke we realized that something must be done. When I got home from work everyone loaded up into the car for a trip to Toys R Us. Up and down the aisles looking at all manner of cheap plastic shit to step on. Why do we constantly buy this stuff? Each child selected something that they couldn’t live without and the birthday girl got a larger budget than the others. A total first-world way to handle the issue. Once everyone is satisfied with their selection we pay the lady at the front and get into the van. The children immediately open the new toys and lose 53% of all the accessory trinkets in each box.

All that shopping made us hungry so we went to the number one choice for when mommy says, “I don’t care..” when asked where to eat. Cracker Barrel. It was 7:40 at night so we hoped the dinner rush was finished. As we pulled in the parking lot I noticed a charter bus with a large Cruisin-for-Christ logo down the side. I don’t suppose the logo is relevant to the story other than I found it humorous as I imagined what road tripping for the lord in a charter bus and stopping at the Cracker Barrel actually looked like. I found out. Inside the lobby was a group of 40+ septuagenarians who refused to group up and share tables so they were being sat two at a time. I was disappointed. I feel that Jesus would have encouraged sharing of tables. Especially in the midst of a cruise in his honor. BDAY2

I could see that my family of six was out of luck for quick eats. We had to fall back to the always decent second choice of Olive Garden. The only place that I go into with the intent of eating soup and salad and end up bingeing on every carb ever created. This trip went exactly like that. Pasta speaks to me in a dark and romantic language. As I crammed the last scorched end of a buttery breadstick down into my stomach I remembered that we promised ice cream as desert. The girls were smart enough not to touch their dinner while I ate like a land based catfish; hovering over uneaten scraps. Shoveling the precious pasta into my pie-hole.

Once I felt totally defeated from the inside out I sat in my self-loathing for a few moments until I overheard a conversation that was happening a couple of booths down. A grandmother person was angry at a child person and was berating her. The child spilled a drink and it ran off the table into this grandmother person’s purse. Grandma proceeded to pepper the child with frustration and f-bombs to the point I thought she was going to become physically violent. The mother of the child was there but remained silent. Obviously, she was a victim of the same type of abuse. It was very disappointing to watch.

I noticed my girls starting to stare at the action and I got their attention.

UD: See that lady. (I pointed)

Kids: Yes.

UD: No one should ever talk to you like that.

Kids: Okay daddy.

UD: Don’t let them!

Kids: We won’t.

UD: There’s a second part…

Kids: What?

UD: Don’t ever treat anyone like that. No matter how frustrated or mad you get. Look around. I mean it. Everyone here has an opinion of that woman now and it isn’t a good one. Her kids will grow up thinking that treating people that way is normal. You can’t be part of that.

Kids: Okay.

UD: I love you girls.

Kids: Love you too daddy.

They seemed to understand that not all people are nice and that calling a child a “stupid little f*ck” is generally in poor taste. It was hard to get out of my head because those scenarios are tricky. I have trouble deciding on action because nothing big will change and my saying something might make a bad situation worse for the child. I do report people who are really shitty but I don’t confront people directly as often as I would like. We paid off the Italian overlords and got up to leave.

As I lumbered into the parking lot, smelling like garlic and shining from the greasy glow of alfredo sauce, I realized that I would need a minute before heading to the ice cream shop. We went to the literary purgatory known as Books-A-Million. Everyone got a book because of course they did. I turn my back for one minute and they had made their selections. I didn’t really turn my back. I actually took a dump in the world’s most uncomfortable bathroom. The only stall is handicap accessible which means the door is five feet away so you already feel like you are pooping in the middle of a room but the extra gaps in the partition walls really help bring the feeling home. When you can make eye contact through the small gaps in the wall and feel the social impulse to wave or do the head nod thing, I think the gap is too big. Toilets should be caves of solitude. Regardless, I am a man of action. A second critique of the bathroom… washing up I learned that the water pressure at Books-A-Million is amazing. The slightest turn of the knob ignited a geyser that soaked my pants in the general region where incontinence would have done the same. I returned to the sales floor with a large wet stain on the front of my pants and I tried to not make eye contact with the gentleman who ventured into the bathroom and stared at me through the partition gap.

I was more than ready when we left for ice cream. Not just any ice cream. The good place where they mix all the candy you want into the most glutinous pile of sweet cream ever scooped. My children have a terrible habit of touching, licking, or face pressing any glass display cases that they come across. The only problem is that other kids do the same. I noticed Donna Threeto sliding her hand across the glass just in time to tell her that I think she ran her hand through a smeared and dried booger. It was crusty and slightly green. What did she do? Smelled her hand and then licked it. I suppose to see if I told her the truth. I don’t even try to understand anymore. All the girls devoured their ice creams and we realized that it was way past bedtime so we started for home.

We managed to bribe the kids into bed solely on the fact that we still had birthday festivities the next day. We had promised a night at the movies to see Captain Underpants. I started to question the whole birthday weekend concept.

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Captain Underpants was exactly the kind of movie that it promised to be. Fart humor. Funny banter. Crazy plot lines. Everyone had a good time. We snuck in some half -filled bags of candy and finished them off with popcorn once we got settled. Lady Bug set her bag down beside her chair and during the movie she started reaching down beside her seat by muscle memory to find her popcorn. Her eyes were glued to the screen. The bag fell away at some point and I noticed that Lady Bug was still reaching down beside her seat and eating something she picked up. Further investigation showed that she was eating the long forgotten pieces of old popcorn that fell between the seats sometime within the last five years. I only put the time limit of five years because surely, they manage to vacuum the seats at some interval? I shuddered in the darkness and then told her to stop eating the seat treats. What else could I do at that point? Charcoal, induce vomiting, stomach pumping? I leaned over towards Supermom.

UD: (in a whisper) I think Lady Bug just ate old seat popcorn.

Supermom: Nice.

UD: I told her to stop.

Supermom: Good.

 

The movie ended. We left the theater and Supermom decided that she needed a new bathing suit for going to the river the next day. We went to Target just before closing time; with four children who were jacked up on Sprite, popcorn, and a movie about flying around in underpants.

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It was a test of my patience. It also tested my humility because my job was to take pieces of the swimsuits back to the rack and exchange sizes as needed by Supermom. The only worse job would be taking the four girls tampon shopping and having to explain the features of all the wings and strings and where each might fit in their future active lives.

BDAY4

I thought we were nearing the end of the punishment when Lady Bug announces that she needs to poop. Supermom disappeared to the bathroom with Lady Bug. I was left holding a striped blue swimsuit top while standing near the entrance like a creeper guy who got a job as a greeter. If Target even bothered with greeters. Honestly the store feels a little too arrogant for that. A few minutes later Supermom emerged with the blank stare of a parent who is done for the day. The exact same stare I had for the previous 45 minutes. Turns out the seat popcorn might have triggered diarrhea. Awesome.

At that point I knew we had achieved birthday success. It started with indulgence. Progressed through entertainment. Ended with shitting of pants in a Target bathroom. The tale of all good birthdays!

If you enjoy a good celebratory binge, this post is for you. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

PAY DAY

I’m a little nervous. Tonight I am sitting here counting a pile of cash that I found on my doorstep. Not really a pile as much as a roll of cash secured with a rubber band. Just lying there at the front door. Do I call the cops? Who leaves money at the front door? I would ask Donna Threeto if she has any ideas but plausible deniability can be a valuable thing.

When we got home she saw the roll of money and cocked an eyebrow. “Whats that?” I put it in my pocket and she squints at me. “I don’t know honey. Looks like someone lost some money.” Undaunted she asked, “Can I see it?”

“Not right now”

“Can I touch it?”

“No we have to get in the house.”

“Does it smell like money?”

“Stop asking about the money.”

She cut her eyes at me and disappeared to her room.

I carried the fat wad of green into my bedroom and proceeded to count the value. All told we had found $916,519.

Too bad the money was printed in China and doesn’t include being actual legal tender. This still could be a shakedown on a neighborhood kid by my future CEO. I’m going to play it cool a few days and see if any new info leaks out. I’ll keep you posted.

Free_Money

Another thing that happened this weekend. We went to see Beauty and the Beast. That’s right. I put my morals and heterosexuality at stake and sat through what was sure to be an onslaught of man-on-man indoctrination that would squeeze my powers for rational thought.

Beauty and Beast

The movie was good. Emma Watson was perfect. The CGI team did a great job with the Beast. Gaston was played well and I had a little heartburn over how they executed the ending. It removed some of the symbolism of Gaston’s bravado sealing his own fate and left things to fate at large. There were a couple of additional scenes that strengthened the story and a weird witch came back to make the ending less logical. A better premier than both Fifty Shades movies because although there were lots of children in this one I am fairly certain that zero children were conceived in the 90 minutes that we were there.

 

Animal updates.

Phillip got a squirrel chalet on the back porch. He hates the outdoors. He stays inside the cage and runs back and forth. So much in fact, that the residual aluminum dust generated from his sliding around has colored his dragging nuts a dark shade of grey on the lower half. Im going to have him Knighted as a servant to the Queen; Sir Phillip Blacknut the First.

Sugar_Baby

The baby sugar glider is out and making friends. Harry Glider is his name. We didn’t have a solid plan for a girl because his parents were already named James and Lily. We back ourselves into a corner there but it worked out.


-If you have a questioned your manhood from a Disney movie, own a squirrel with half-metal nuts, or found a large sum of random money lately. This post is for you. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.

Serpentine Thoughts

I need an escape from stress from time to time. Tonight wasn’t all that stressful but it had a few fun moments. Blogging helps. I am a little on edge. I am attempting a low-carb assault on my body in an attempt to enjoy my fat-pants once again. I am trying to keep my mind occupied. I could snort a Reese’s cup whole at this very moment. Maybe mainline some Coca-Cola. Maybe television could help.

We watched Dance Moms. Don’t ask me why. Every part of this show is orchestrated right down to the brunette lady with the wandering eye. I try to remain above the fray when it comes to physical afflictions but someone has to call mercy on this poor woman. The camera man keeps the zoom on full tilt while her right eye is darting around like a kid on look-out duty during a middle school drug deal. She has to be 50% chameleon with that ability to control each eye independently. Start showing her in profile or something. Not cool guys.

wanderer

Science tells us that Subject A (left) would likely be a prey animal because of her wide field of view and nervous nature whereas Subject B would be more predatory due to a more focused field of movement-based vision. Fascinating. 

During this horrible-person moment I heard a lapping sound coming from the bathroom. It was one of those moments when you slowly put the mental puzzle together and have a terrible realization.

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A) That is the sound of the dog drinking from the toilet and B) The girls never flush and C) We finished dinner about twenty minutes ago so someone has had a spaghetti induced BM. I jumped from the bed screaming, “NOOOOOO.” It was too late. The poor dog thought I was coming to claim her soul. She ran into the bedroom with stool water dripping from her chin. Supermom knew the risks of Judy Cornbread and her chum-chin. Now the poor dog thinks two people are going to kill her. She bolts into the living room to her box. Her safety zone. I locked her inside and went back to clean the toilet.

How long should you leave a dog alone while you wait for their mouth nastiness to clear?

A week?

Forever?

I’m not sure science has an answer.

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Donna Threeto lost her front tooth tonight. She ran into the room giggling, “Prima pulled my tooth out of my head. Hahaha.” Somehow Prima has managed to pull three teeth by snatching something out of her sister’s mouths. I don’t even know what they have in their mouth in the first place. Oh God… don’t let it be the dog’s chew toy. Moving on. She is so proud of losing her tooth in a hardcore way. She is walking around like Fire Marshall Bill. Her gums will need moisturizer if she doesn’t start putting her lip down soon.

firemarshall

We went to the exotic pet fair this weekend.

Let’s have a quick show of hands by everyone who thinks we made it through without buying something.

We brought a Gecko. A Crested Dalmatian Gecko is what the magic marker on the Tupperware said.

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Meet Hermes Vanderwaal. His feet feel really cool when he walks on you.

If you are having a good week this post is for you. Mine is going well too. No really. You’re welcome.

-Underdaddy to the rescue.