#43 – Hear This

Our friends, Tracy and Ron, live nearby, together with Tracy’s 90-year-old grandmother, Betsy. Although nothing on Betsy works quite like it used to – she suffers from hearing loss and arthritis, and sometimes gets confused – she’s remarkably spry and mentally agile for a woman her age. She also happens to be a real firecracker: a feisty, highly-opinionated, and surprisingly current character, whose love for expressing views to anyone and everyone is matched only by her disdain for listening, to anyone and everyone (a trait explained only in part by her hearing difficulties). Best of all, Betsy has a catchphrase, which she typically employs when advertising a negative opinion about persons or entities.

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#44 – Are Those the Lips You Kiss Your Mother With?

It never ceases to amaze me how conveniently selective my wife can be, when it comes to choosing which objects she’s willing to put in or against her mouth. Last month, she pressed her lips against my late iguana’s face, with disastrous results. A few days ago, she returned home from work and French kissed Prometheus for forty-six seconds.

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#45 – Where’s Your Jumping Point?

This morning I saw an example of what may be the most universally applied and versatile parental answer to childhood stupidity, in all its forms. My neighbor caught her eight-year-old son and his friend skateboarding without a helmet. When she yelled at her boy to put one on, he responded with classic child logic, explaining that his friend, Jessica, doesn’t wear a helmet. His mother in turn applied a version of the standard response to such an assertion: “If Jessica jumped off a cliff, would you jump too?”

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#47 – There’s No Such Thing as a Unicorn! — Part 1

In order to understand the unicorn debacle, you first have to understand Gina. My sister-in-law thinks of herself as firmly grounded in reality. As I see it, her monthly credit card debt (at times greater than her husband’s take home pay) proves that the last thing she’s actually grounded in is reality. Nonetheless, in this instance, it’s the thought that counts.

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#48 – There’s No Such Thing as a Unicorn! — Part 2

Though Gina prayed Franco’s unicorn fantasy would magically vanish after the library fiasco, she felt no surprise when her son revisited the subject the very next day. She was in the kitchen, doing some last minute straightening, when she heard a painful yelp echoing from the foyer. Responding immediately, she found her boy on his knees, crying, and bemoaning the fact that “My unicorn hurt me!”

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#50 – Conservation may be King, but the Porcelain Throne is God

My wife and I each have our own peculiarities and compulsions. Mine lead me to conservationism and frugality. Hers … Well, let’s just say, hers do not.
Judging by her actions, I think Sophia’s favorite adjectives must be “clean” and “complete.” She washes the sheets and bath towels twice a week. If she sees a roll of toilet paper two-thirds gone, she removes it. And when her toothpaste tube requires the least bit of folding to squeeze out the contents, into the garbage it goes.

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#51 – Wabbit Season

Several people have told me they don’t see much (if any) sign of Shih Tzu in Prometheus. What do I know? Before my wife gifted him to me, for Father’s Day, I couldn’t have picked a Shih-Tzu or a Yorkie out of a lineup, and I’d certainly never heard of a melding of the two breeds. The truth of the situation makes no difference to me either. To be blunt, at less than six pounds, there’s not enough of the critter for me to give a crap. In any case, I’m far less concerned over the percentage of Shih-Tzu genetically contributed to my puppy than I am about the disturbing inter-species behavior I’m seeing from him.

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