We're getting ready to head down to God's Waiting Room (i.e. Florida) for Christmas so that my lovely daughter can eat sand on the beach for a week while getting smothered around the clock by her grandparents. My parents have no cable TV, no internet access and no stereo. They hate air conditioning, love eating dinner at 5:30, and are fast asleep by 9:00 pm. I like to refer to spending time down there with them as being on my own reality show...Survivor: Palm Beach!
Since I don't know when I'll be able to post again, I thought I'd leave you with a few random thoughts and stories. Chaos Theory: the Holiday Edition.
HOLD ALL MY CALLS!
One of the reasons that we put Peanut in daycare is because we suspected that our nanny was talking on the phone all day. Sometimes, I'd walk into the apartment unexpectedly and she'd be there simultaneously yapping on the phone, preparing the Peanut's lunch, flipping through People magazine, and filing her nails. If there's one thing that our nanny could do, it was multi-task.
Last night, while I was washing the dishes, Peanut was eating some mac-and-cheese at her little miniature dining/play table. When I looked up to see how she was doing, she had the phone cradled on her shoulder, was eating with one hand, drawing a picture with the other, and nodding her head up and down while saying, "uh huh, yeah, ok, yeah, mm hmm, ok."
It's truly amazing to watch what kids pick up.
My friend Adam is a big cheese at a major bank but he has 3 kids so he tends to work at home a lot. Recently, he walked into his living room, only to see his 3-year old daughter with a pretend phone, saying, "NO, NO, NO! That is NOT what I said!"
WE HAD TO BEAT THE SINGLE WOMEN AWAY WITH STICKS
I was speaking to my friend Andrew today. Andrew and I have been friends since we were 13. Back in high school, we were both star athletes but we were also both a little off-kilter so we never really fit in with the "jock crowd." The great thing about our relationship is that neither of us ever worries about the other person thinking we're strange so we can just relax with one another and be our normally strange selves. Everyone needs a friend like that.
Anyway, we started reminiscing about the days when we lived together in Washington, DC after college. During that time, I would often hole up in my bedroom for days with a pile of microfiched NY Times Sunday crossword puzzles that I'd spent hours copying from the Library of Congress. However, Andrew didn't mind because he was usually in the other room engaging in HIS favorite hobby...reading the dictionary! For fun! With a highlighter!
And even though our rooms were only separated by a few feet, we'd often talk to each other on the phone for hours. I'd call him at 1:00 am on a Friday night and ask whether he knew a Hungarian filmmaker whose name had four letters. An hour later, he'd call me asking whether I knew that the word, "karaoke" was derived from the Japanese word "okesutora," a rough translation of the word, "orchestra."
Nerds at play, yo!
Today on the phone, we discussed how incredibly fortuitous it was that we both found these beautiful women who were willing to marry two totally incredible geeks like us.
ANYONE WANT TO SPLIT A COBB SALAD AND TALK ABOUT THE NEW PHILLIP ROTH BOOK?
I love red meat. I love scotch. I love women. And I love sports. But that doesn't mean that I want to sit around with a bunch of guys and talk about macho shit all day. Last week, I had a work-related lunch with some bankers and my head was spinning from all the testosterone flying around the table. What is it about some guys that when they're with a group of men they feel they've got to be as macho as possible? Fuck! I just wanted to beat some of them upside their head with my beret.
THREE SIGNS OF THE COMING APOCALYPSE & THE END OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION
(1) Four of the top-selling books on Amazon right now are by Rachel Ray.
(2) Jennifer Aniston and K-Fed were seen holding hands and leaving a club together.
(3) The Yankees starting pitching rotation might be Petite, Mussina, Clemens, and Johnson.
HOW TO ENTERTAIN YOURSELF IN A PUBLIC BATHROOM
I used to love pulling pranks on people whenever I was in a public restroom. One of my favorites was turning off the lights just as I was walking out the door. Hearing 4-5 guys in pitch darkness, taking craps in the stalls yell out, "HEY! What the fuck!" always cracked me up. Other times, I'd hear someone grunt in a stall and I'd shout out, "That's right, buddy. You show that turd who's the boss!"
Anyway, at the beginning of this week, I was Christmas shopping at Macy's and had to use the restroom. The line for a stall must have been 20 people deep and was moving at a snail's pace. At one point, the guy standing in line in front of me turned around to face me and said, "Man, this better be fucking worth it!"
I'm STILL laughing my ass off over that one!
IF AT FIRST YOU DON'T SUCCEED, CRY, CRY AGAIN.
As most of you know, we are solidly in the throes of the Terrible Twos. The other day, I apparently made a drastic mistake by giving Peanut the wrong celery stick. This came as a surprise to me because I didn't even know there was a RIGHT celery stick. Naturally, Peanut melted into the floor and went into one of her patented tantrums.
Only this time, I knelt down to look at her face closely. It looked like a normal tantrum. It sounded like a normal tantrum. But, after a closer observation, I noticed that no tears were coming out of her eyes!
She was trying to play me for a sucker! Damn, what a sly dog.
I started laughing hysterically and yelled out, "BUSTED! Nice try, kiddo. A+ for effort! Bravo!" For a brief second, I could hear the little gears turning in the Peanut's head as she contemplated whether to continue with her charade or just give up the ruse. Thankfully, she chose the latter and not only started laughing hysterically with me but also started nibbling on the celery stick.
Kids, man. You gotta watch your backs with them.
WHO SAID THE HOMELESS HAVE NO STYLE?
As I left my apartment yesterday, I noticed that the crazy guy who sleeps outside my building and pees on my doorstep every day was wearing a t-shirt that said, "Get a job!" Since I actually do have a job and was already in a shitty mood, the irony of his wardrobe selection was lost on me.
However, it did remind me of a funny story.
In college at Berkeley, I lived near a sorority. One day, when my buddy Jose and I were hanging out smoking a joint, the UPS guy asked me if I could sign for some packages that had been shipped to the sorority. Sure, I said. No problem. As it turns out, he was delivering three enormous boxes filled with sorority sweatshirts that the girls had ordered.
As soon as we signed for the sweatshirts, Jose and I decided we were going to give them away to people who really needed them. We jumped in my car and drove down to People's Park, the once-legendary location of 1960's social activism that has now denigrated into a magnet for drug deals and homeless people. Over the course of one hour, Jose and I probably gave away more than 200 sweatshirts to various homeless people.
You have no idea how awesome and hilarious it was to see all these crazy-looking people who hadn't showered in months wearing these brand-new bright pink Kappa Kappa Gamma sweatshirts as they strolled up and down Telegraph Avenue.
Who said you can't do good and do well at the same time?
MY 5 FAVORITE POLITICAL QUOTES OF 2006 (THESE ARE OUR LEADERS?)
(1) "Are you really going to ask me that question with shades on?"- President Bush to legally blind reporter Peter Wallsten.
(2) "Why do they hate each other? Why do Sunnis kill Shiites? How can they even tell the difference? They all look the same to me."- Senator Trent Lott (R-MI.)
(3) "I enjoy cocaine because it's a fun thing to do. I enjoy the company of prostitutes for the same reason. If you combine the two together it's probably even more fun." --Rep. Robert Wexler (D-Fla.)
(4) "Don't worry. I still had a ham sandwich for lunch, and my mother made great pork chops." -Sen. George Allen (R-VA), on his Jewish heritage.
(5) "She's either Puerto Rican, or the same thing as Cuban, I mean they are all very hot. They have the, you know, part of the black blood in them and part of the Latino blood in them that together makes it." --Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, on Assemblywoman Bonnie Garcia.
CONVERSATIONS FROM THE CONCRETE JUNGLE
As I was disembarking from the 2 train this morning, I ended up accidentally bumping into a rather large and intimidating black man. With a look of sheer disgust on his face, he turned to me and said, "Fucking idiot! Go back to China!" Already surly and in a crappy mood, I snapped back at him, "Fuck you! Go back to Africa!"
Usually in New York, that's the end of the conversation. The two participants have spoken their minds, talked a little smack, and moved on with their busy lives.
Unfortunately, at this point, my fellow commuter decided to break the social contract and proceeded to take a step in my direction as if he were intending to inflict bodily harm. Coming at me rather quickly, he got all up in my face and retorted, "Fuck you, asshole! I was born in the motherfucking Bronx!"
He was so angry that spittle started dripping off his chin. It almost looked like he was foaming at the mouth. Obviously, the rational move would have been to defuse the situation by simply walking away. However, racial insults are my Achilles heel and the "go back to China" comment was still making my blood boil.
So I decided to stand my ground and snapped back at him, "Fuck YOU! I was born in motherfucking Queens!"
Apparently, this was just the icebreaker that our relationship needed because, at that point, we just stopped and stared at each other with bemused looks on our faces. Then, with a huge smile breaking out on his face, he laughed and said, "Oh yeah? Well, the Mets fucking suck!"
I, in a likewise fashion, retorted, "Yeah? Well, the Yankees can suck my dick!"
With that banter of jolly repartee, we repaired the social contract between us by turning away from each other and exiting from the station.
God, I love this city! Is this the greatest place in the world or what? Where else can you interact with your brethren like that?
And where else can you leave the office to grab lunch and see 500 Santas descending on Bryant Park?
Happy holidays to all of you and your families. May 2007 bring you and your loved ones a year filled with love, health, and happiness. For those of you with loved ones serving in the armed forces overseas, our thoughts and prayers are with you. For those of you traveling this holiday season, we wish you a safe journey. As always, let's take the time to remember how much we have to be thankful for.
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!
MetroDad, BossLady & the Peanut