Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Crabby New Year...



That note marked the START of our trip to Chicago, so you can imagine how it fucking went from there. Here's the rest of the hell-voyage:

  • Icy fucking roads in western Michigan added a good two hours onto an already rectum-ripping drive. Came close to dying in Paw Paw.
  • Miss O had the flu the entire trip -- fever, hacking cough, didn't eat anything, non-stop whine-a-palooza. Which was EXCELLENT.
  • The Old Lady and I had to sleep on a futon that was apparently hewn from living rock. That's okay, though... didn't need my pelvis anyway.
  • Left a day early to avoid hellish weather but managed to be permanently inscribed in my mom's shitlist for missing the "family" reunion. Thing is, everyone at the reunion was like a fifth cousin many times removed so what the shit was the big fucking deal?! But I'm pretty sure I'm now out of the will forever.
And that was it. Merry fucking Xmas. Oh, and because Miss O was sick, the Old Lady and I couldn't spend a night in the city at the goddamn Sofitel, like we had planned, 'cuz we had to be around to talk her down from the constant NIGHT TERRORS she was having. (And for those who haven't experienced their spawn having a night terror -- holy shitballs, that's some freaky fucking shit. Like Exorcist kinda shit. Scarred me for life, that girl did.)

Oh, and I've been thinking about what to do with this blog for the new year. I think I've come up with the ultimate Bowflex-of-a-resolution idea that, in true Bowflexian style, I'll stick to for about a month and then start hanging my clothes on it. The idea?

Song-a-week.

Simple, right? Record and complete one song a week with the spawnage and post it here. I may not even make it through week one. I dunno. But it's something. I mean, if I can stick to this fucker, I'll have 52 songs by 2010. That's like a quadruple album. Makes "Double Live Gonzo" look like a fucking EP. Full Bluntal Nugity, my ass.

So, yeah, I'll give it a shot.

It'll never work.

See ya next year.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Cur-rap.

A word of advice for all those parentals out there loading up your Netflix queue with nostalgic films from your childhood that you're convinced your spawn will love because movies were fucking awesome back then and the shit they put out today can't hold a fucking candle to the masterpieces of your youth:

If you've got "Benji" in that queue, blast that fucker outta there, immediately.

Holy fuckstain, that is a steaming, worm-studded dog-turd of a film. And I use the word "film" only because watching it left a silty, shit-flavored film on my goddamn teeth. And no amount of brushing can scrub the B.M.-y aftertaste outta my kibble hole.

Here's the actual minute-by-minute breakdown of the movie:

For the first 19 hours, Benji trots down the sidewalk, stopping to see some moron kids, eat shit out of a trash can, visit with a cop in the park and get a bone from Uncle Joe from "Petticoat Junction." (No, Uncle Joe doesn't actually "bone" Benji, but that would've at least spiced this fucker up a bit.)

Then Benji does THE SAME EXACT SHIT AGAIN. Same. Exact. Thing. Kids, shit, cop, bone. It's like that fucking Teletubbies show. Lather, rinse, repeat. Enough to make me wanna cave my skull in with the remote.

Then, the guy who played Eb, from "Green Acres", and this guy who was on four episodes of "Fantasy Island" talk about goddamn PUDDING CUPS for four fucking hours. I shit you not. Pudding!

Cups!

Oh, and in what seemed like the last 30 seconds of the movie, some kids get kidnapped, Benji saves them and they get to keep him.

And after that, I kicked in the TV screen.

The End.

I sure as fuck hope that writer/director Joe Camp was spayed and/or neutered after the first screening of this shitball. God DAMN what a piece of turd.

Can't wait to see the next movie in our queue: "Benji the Hunted."

Monday, December 01, 2008

Road Drip!

Spent Tanksgibbon with the spawnage at my folks' house in suburban Chicago. You'll notice no mention the Old Lady in that sentence -- no, she decided to stay home to "get some work done." Something about "making sure she gets tenure" so she doesn't "lose her job" and force us to "live in my parents' basement" and "only eat Ramen."

So, I'm not gonna go over all the myriad ways in which the trip was a pain in the fucking shitterhole, and how I didn't get any sleep and how the spawnage argued constantly and how my parents keep their house so fucking hot and dry that my skin turned all Slim Jimmy and my lips are so fucking chapped that they resemble what I would imagine William Hickey's anus used to look like.

I will, however, tell you about how I almost pissed my pants. See, I drink a lot of coffee in the morning. I don't necessarily LIKE to... I have to. This, combined with the fact that my bladder can apparently hold only one fluid ounce of liquid at any given time, makes close proximity to a bathroom pretty fucking crucial. So four hour car trips kinda blow donkey balls.

So, I peed before we left, and then I peed again at the BP station about five minutes later, just to make sure I was gonna be golden for at least an hour or so. Ha, golden. Get it? We hit the highway and things were pretty good... that is, until we hit the first toll on the Skyway that was backed up for about a mile. As we sat there, parked, I could feel my ureters filling up like a coupla giant, taut balloon animals, if balloon animals were filled with steaming, water buffalo piss. The spawnage were going nuts in the back seat, asking me for snacks and telling me to change the DVD and I really started to feel like I was gonna piss my fucking nappies.

Traffic finally got moving after the toll booth, but there's really nowhere to exit on the Skyway and I started thinking about pulling over onto the shoulder and draining it right then and there. But it was starting to snow pretty fucking hard and it was getting pretty slick and, frankly, sliding into a ditch is bad enough without pee-soaked trousers, so that was a no-go.

I decided to tough it out and get to the 94. I floored it and we started hydroplaning eastward. While the pain in my schvantz-sphincter was becoming unbearable, I was fairly confident it would remain pinched-shut for at least another 20 minutes, or so. And, to make things even more exciting, Miss O was now screaming that she had to pee, too. I plowed forward, the tinkle practically gurgling in the back of my throat by now.

Finally, just as a fine, misty pre-pee was starting to dribble outta my dingus, I spied the first exit with a gas station sign. It was in a town called Chesterton, and we were barely gonna make it. Now remember, the Old Lady wasn't with us, so I had to take Mr. Z and Miss O into the men's room with me, which is always a fucking joy. We skidded off the highway, slammed into the parking space, ran into Speedway, threw open the men's room door and there we stood, face to face, with the nastiest fucking shit-sprayed, hellmouth I've ever seen. Seriously, it was spattered with so much shit and random effluvia that is looked like a giant, 3-D Jackson Poo-llock painting. And the smell? Well, I'm imagining it's what walking into Dom DeLuise's transverse colon might smell like. But worse.

But it didn't matter, 'cuz we had work to do. I yelled to Mr. Z, "Go pee but DON'T TOUCH ANYTHING!!!!" Then I ran Miss O into the single stall that HAD NO DOOR ON IT, and stared into the hellmouth portal. It was truly a work o' fart. The outside of the bowl was caked in B.M. and the seat had about 3 gallons of piss puddled upon it. Miss O shouted, "I'M NOT SITTING ON THAT!!!!" I agreed. So I pulled out an entire roll's worth of toilet paper, wrapped it around my hand like a fucking boxing glove and wiped that fucker down. Then I piled another entire roll's worth on top of the seat and had her sit upon it. She ended up sitting about two feet above the rim with all the padding underneath her.

Now, if you've been following closely, you'll realize that I still haven't peed yet. My eyes were bulging outta my urine-filled head at this point and I danced around, waiting for Miss O to finish. She finally did, I told her to run to the middle of the room and stand next to her brother and to "NOT TOUCH A FUCKING THING!!!!" as I bolted to the urinal and unleashed a raging torrent of steaming bladder juice that would've had a fucking elephant cowering in fear. Steam poured outta that urinal like a fucking bathhouse.

Twenty minutes later, I was done.

After we scrubbed every nook and/or cranny of our bodies with paint thinner, shaved our heads and burned our clothing, we were ready to get back in the car and continue the trip home.

So, despite your crap-spackled nastiness, Chesterton, the crabbyfamily thanks you from the bottom of our farts.

Or, as Mr. Z likes to call you, "Ches-turd-ton."

[SFX: toilet flush]

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Ice Holes...

There's a fucking two hour delay to the start of the spawanges' school, today, because of "ice on the roads." How did I find out about this fact? Did I receive a phone call this morning? Was there a message on the school's answering machine? Did I see some sort of notice on the local cable access channel? Did I look out the window and realize it would be impossible to drive under such (apparently) brutal conditions?

No, I found out when I drove Mr. Z, on roads with NO FUCKING ICE ANYWHERE, to his darkened school that had absolutely no goddamn cars in the parking lot. That's the equivalent of a phone-tree in this fucking town.

Seriously, all I need, at this point, is for Mr. Haney to show up to try to sell me a faulty tractor and I'll have officially become Oliver Wendell Douglas.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

When Hack Turns to Hork...

I just cleaned up barf from Mr. Z's floor. He's been home from school for a couple of days with some sort of hacking phlegm-plague and, up until a few minutes ago, has only been spraying the house with horked up sputum. Apparently, he was just coughing so hard that, well, that he fucking yooked... which is just what I needed, right about now, as the Old Lady has conveniently had meetings for the last three afternoon/nights and it's been a non-stop, brain-hemorrhage-inducing spawn-o-palooz-shit.

Oh, and I'm pretty sure I've contracted Mr. Z's goddamn plague, which fucking rocks!

I think the BlogOverlord is punishing me for taking a fucking break from posting... fucking dick. Good thing I'm a atheist.

The only thing that's actually made me crack the faintest of smiles through my humorless, death-mask-like physiognomy was this:



I feel like Turtle Tim but I really wish I were the Eggman. He seems so much happier, that Eggman.

Goo goo ga joob.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

One Last Thing...

Okay, time in... for a sec. You know how Miss O has these goddamn warts on two of her toes and she basically won't let anyone touch them without screaming like she's being murdleized? And how, in between traumatic visits to the doctor (traumatic for him, not Miss O), we're supposed to have been putting this Compound W on these monstrosities, but then that shit just cakes up on top of their wartliness, and we have to somehow remove this wart-cake in order to apply some more, so we're not just compounding the Compound W with more Compound W? And when we do this, Miss O screams so fucking loud that the neighbors are SO gonna call the cops, especially since she's screaming shit like, "DON'T DADDY! DON'T DO THAT!!! IT HURTS ME!!! IT HURTS!!! STOP IT DADDY!!!!" Yeah, try explaining THAT one to the fucking cops.

Well, now Miss O's doctor, who is this close to giving up medicine because of Miss O's bi-weekly visits, wants us to use a NAIL FILE and file these mofos down in between appointments! What the shit, doc?! Why don't you just tell me to singe 'em off with an arc-welder. Ya fucking sadistic fuckshit.

Anywhich, we told Miss O that we're going to file them this afternoon, instead of tonight, because when we do try to do it at night, she gets so fucking worked up, as do we, that no one can get to fucking sleep when it's all over. So, we told her we're firing up the emery board as soon as she's done with her homework. She was just furiously writing, and I thought she was working on said homework. Instead, she handed me this:



I wonder if a belt-sander would be quicker?

Monday, October 27, 2008

SLAM!

Okay, I've hit my wall. There's nothing left in the ol' tankeroo. I'm spent. Finito. Zip. Zally. Zilch. The train has left the station. Toot toot. I'm done.

I mean, what, 624 posts is pretty good, right? And I've seriously tried to write something over the last coupla days, honest. We had this huge fucking birthday party for Miss O this weekend with 10 screaming girls and a limbo contest and a craft project and bobbing for apples and did I mention screaming and tears and fucking blood spurting from my eye sockets, and shit, you know, I sat down to write about it and nothing came out except air. Nada. After a goddamn birthday party! Bupkus!

So I'm taking a break. Probably not forever, just until the searing pains that shoot through my puny brain every time I stare at this goddamn blank rectangle begin to subside. I'll probably post every now and then... when I have something to whine about or when one of the spawnages writes a new ditty. In fact, I'm going to try to spend more time recording with them. I'd like to finish that fucking albatross of a CD of theirs that's hanging around my neck like a goddamn... well, albatross. When that's done, I'll post it here. I promise. And I'll send off those free copies I promised to all of you who ordered shitty wrapping paper and whimsical trinkets from Mr. Z last year.

So, this isn't really goodbye... it's more of a TTFN. It'll give you an opportunity to use that minute you used to piddle away here reading my insufferable pablum for something more constructive. Take up a hobby, or something. Might I suggest glass-blowing?

And, then, there you go.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Sounds Like Someone Needs to Empty Their Spit Valve...

Tonight, Mr. Z, Miss O and yours crabbily made an impromptu recording of a little "musical" number we crapped out while waiting for the Old Lady to get home from professorin'. It was a round, of sorts -- a rhythmic round. Rhythms produced using only our cupped hands and our armpits. You heard me -- an armpit fart round.

I started with quarter notes, Miss O "played" eighth notes, and then Mr. Z joined in with 16th notes produced not with his armpits, but with his behind-the-knee pits. But enough 'splainin' -- here 'tis:


Fartin': A Round by the Crabbyfamily

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Z-Wrex...

Mr. Z wiped out on his bike, Friday, on the way home from school. He was apparently "popping a wheelie" when he came down on a rock and, subsequently, bit it. I got a call from him at about 3:10 and he said, very matter-of-factly, "I just totally wiped out on my bike and I busted my elbow." I almost shat my nappies, but then I remembered it was Mr. Z, who has a tendency to, oh, "oversell" a situation from time to time. So I asked him to clarify.

I asked him if he thought his elbow was really broken and he said, "No, but it's gonna need like 10 bandages. It's totally bloody." I then asked him if he wanted me to come and get him and he said he'd be okay and he could ride home.

Yobbita-yobbita-WHUH?!

At that point, I was pretty convinced that Mr. Z hadn't wiped out, but had rather been abducted by aliens, and replaced with a cyborg Mr. Z. There's NO FUCKING WAY that that calm, cool and chillaxin' "person" on the other end of the phone was the Mr. Z I knew.

But, sure enough, 10 minutes later, in walked the boy, bloodied elbow in tow, sans tears and cool as a crabcumber. As I bandaged his wound, he filled me in on the details of the wreck -- there were a lot of kids around when it happened, he got up and dusted himself off, he DIDN'T CRY, and the kicker, an 8th grade boy saw the whole thing happen and proclaimed, "Dude, you totally took that like a man!"

Now, I'm not one for reinforcing sexist declarations of "manlihood" but, FUCK YEAH HE DID! I explained to Mr. Z that if word of his face-plant flintiness got around school, he could well be on his way to gaining some serious middle-schooler "cred." He smiled, stood up a little taller, and then confidently strode into the other room... to play Webkinz with his six year old sister.

(Baby steps to manlihood.)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Gotta Hand It to Him....

So... So... tired. I've got nothin' for you, tonight. Nothing except this drawing that Mr. Z brought home from his art class today:



I can't decide which of the three is the most awesome. The one on the left, or "hand," is great because it's got that auto-peace-sign thing going on, and all the fingers look like French baguettes. The one on the right, or "hand? big," is like some sort of Lynda Barry-esque claw-hand. And then there's "cartoon hand." I have a feeling that one wasn't part of the assignment.

Mr. Z also came home declaring, "Today was the greatest day ever for three reasons! One, no homework! Two, I found a quarter! And three... B (the dickhead bully who's been tormenting the shit outta Z since 2nd grade) MOVED!!! He's gone! FOREVER!!!! Can you believe it?!?!"

Woo-hoo! Three deformed-hand high-fives for Mr. Z!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

The Wart of the Toeses...

Quick update on the wart-sitch. As I drove Miss O to the doc after school, she was in fantastic spirits. We were laughing and singing and just having the grandest of wart-removal-fretting-free times imaginable. I had a backpack full of candy, stuffed animals and magazines, and like the knob that I am, I figured there was nothing to warty about.

Even in the examination room, while we were waiting for Dr. Death to enter, she was laughing and boppin' around and cutting armpit farts like there was no tomorrowart. Then, the doc and the nurse burst in and kicked off World Wart III. Now, to her credit, Miss O didn't scream this time. Instead, she somehow hooked her warty foot behind her "good" foot and refused to extend it toward the doc. At first I tried reasoning with her -- I pulled out the "Spongebob Halloween" magazine and offered her some Smarties, but she wouldn't fucking budge. It was as if she had sunk her horny, warty talons into her Achilles tendon and was hunkered down for the long haul.

Finally, I managed to wrassle her foot free and hold it in front of Dr. Feelgood, as he first sliced off some of the dead skin and then proceeded to burn those fuckers with the liquid nitrogen dipped Q-Tips. It was intense -- each time he touched the Q-Tip to the wart, there was a little "sizzle" noise and then wisps of vaporized wart-smoke would waft upwards, occasionally curling their smokey viral tendrils up my flared nares. And you haven't tripped until you've huffed wart-smoke, my friends. A heady brew, indeed.

But there was no screaming. There were one or two tears, and I could actually hear her teeth grinding down to nubs as she gritted them throughout the entire process. But she, more or less, held it together throughout. I think I'm gonna chalk it up in the win column.

Granted, the warts are still there and the doc informed me that there'll be one, maybe two more visits until those fuckers are permanently vaporized. As he put it, "Warts are like swimming upstream -- you have to make it all the way to the end, or the current will carry you all the way back down and you have to start over from scratch."

The dude's a regular Wart Whitman.

So, I scheduled the next appointment for two weeks from now and, wouldn't you know it, it just happens to fall on one of the Old Lady's afternoons. Doggone it all to heck. She gets all the fun. Doesn't matter, though... she'll schedule the one after that on one of my days. It's a regular tug-o-wart between us.

Oh well, until we wart again...

Monday, October 13, 2008

Wart's Happening Now!!

For those of you who've inexplicably been dropping by here for a while, you'll recall the joy that was had during Mr. Z's Wart-tastic Foot-a-Palooza of Winter 2006. Multiple trips to the family doc, with the freezing and the slicing and blood-curdling screaming... wait, am I still talking about warts or have I shifted to some sort of Bill-Kurtis-hosted Jeffrey Dahmer news magazine on the Biography channel?

Anywart, flash-forward a coupla years and, surprise, we find young Miss O following in her brother's papillomavirus-infested footsteps. Two mongo wartzillas growing on the tips of her tiny toes, like a couple of plantar-unicorns... shoe-nicorns, if you will. We've been futilely battling them for a few months, with those fucking worthless Dr. Scholl's wart pads, but the good doctor must've gotten his goddamn degree in Grenada, 'cuz theose fuckers ain't doing shizzle.

Miss O has been to the real doc once, so far, and the Old Lady was the lucky chaperone the first time. It was, apparently, a "fucking nightmare," what with the girl screaming bloody murder and the Old Lady and the nurse having to physically restrain her during the freezing procedure (which also didn't do shit, by the way.)

Well, guess who gets to take her to visit number two, tomorrow? Give up? I'll give you a hint -- it rhymes with "crabbydab." Yep, after school tomorrow, it's round two in the battle of "Miss O vs. Anyone-who-tries-to-get-near-her-fucking-toes"... and their tympanic membranes. That girl can fucking scream with the best of 'em. If Sammy Hagar had been an almost-seven year old girl who had warts on his toes, he wouldn't even come close to out-screaming her. (But he'd still grow up to, one day, sing on Van Halen's album OUWART12.)

The thing is, she used be fucking fearless when she was younger. She'd wipe out, get up and dust herself off, and then run off to wipe-the-fuck out again. (Remember, the crabbykids aren't the most agile of spawnages.) But she had a shitty experience when she got her ears pierced last winter -- one of the earrings was ripped out by an overzealous towel-drying once -- and things rocketed down the ol' shitter after that.

And nothing really helps. I try reasoning, bargaining, BRIBING... nada. I can get her nice and calm... have her laughing and joking around, and then the doc walks in the room and it's like the goddamn Texas Chainsaw Massacre in there. And the thing that kills me is, after it's all over, she's fine. She's like, "Oh, gee... that didn't hurt." Meanwhile, there's blood spouting out of my fucking earholes, the nurse is catatonic and weeping in the corner and the doc is injecting lidocaine into his own jugular.

But, we've gotta go tomorrow just to ensure that her foot doesn't end up looking like the Elephant Man's head. Although I could always just slip a burlap sack over the thing and rent her out to the circus. Money is tight in our troubled economy, but people always love them a good freakshow.

Hmm. Another one of them parental dilemmas I always seem to find myself in...

Thursday, October 09, 2008

The Spawnish Inquisition...

I don't know what further Guantanamo-style torture sessions the spawnage have in store for me, but they've been recently engaging me in some sort of nefarious sleep-deprivation experiment that has me ready to fess up to whatever crime I may or may not have committed.

Monday night-- 1:00 AM: Mr. Z awakens me from deeeeeeep R.E.M. sleep by walking into the hallway and pronouncing, in his I-sound-like-I'm-awake-but-I'm-SO-not voice, that he "wants to talk about the astronauts" and that "he's worried about what the martians are doing." I walk him back to bed where he goes back to, er, continues sleeping, while I'm awake for a good 20 minutes.

Tuesday night -- 1:30 AM: Miss O's Tamagotchi-style "Fairy Magic Electronic Pet" starts beeping this incessant brain-drilling digital beep in her room and she wakes both the Old Lady and I up shouting for us to do something about it. In a rare move, the Old Lady attends to it, while I fall back asleep... only to be awakened moments later when said Old Lady gruffly pushes my arm off her pillow.

Last night (this morning) 5:07 AM: Mr. Z, actually awake this time, opens the door and says, "Dad? I had the all time worst nightmare I've ever had." I walk him back to bed and assure him that he's safe and mumble something like "ssssfine... mmback to sleep... think about... baby monkeys or flommbrrrgnnbrzzz."

I have no idea what's in store for me tonight... maybe bamboo under the fingernails, maybe some caning on the bottoms of my feet, or perhaps some good, old-fashioned waterboarding. All I know is that I'm about to fucking crack and spill the beans about where the Old Lady's secret chocolate bars are stashed.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Saugatuckered...

Back from our mini-vaykeigh and, while it was a great time, I'm now tired as shitfuck. Too shitfucked, in fact, to write anything longer than a sentence or two. So, here's the trip in pics/captions:


It's the famous Saugatuck neon-penis, a tribute to Chief Saugatuck, inventor of... that's right, the neon penis.



The famous Wickwood Inn, where we slept. Little known fact: the inn is run by Julee Rosso, author of the "Silver Palate Cookbook," and owner of several hundreds of Crabbydad's dollars.



The room in which yours crabbily and the Old Lady "slept." It's called the "Kyoto Room," because of its Japanese-influenced design and because, each morning after sleeping on the lumpy feather-bed mattress in the room, I'd wake up saying, "KEE! OH! T'OH, MY BACK!"



This is the nearby beach we walked along -- collected some beach glass, some driftwood and a pocketful of used syringes, condoms and a human ear.



DeMond's grocery store, where we bought the New York Times each morning. This is a mural on the side of the building, depicting the store's founders -- Lindsay Buckingham, Shemp Howard and a potato in overalls.



Believe it or don't -- Beery Field is where they held Octoberfest on Saturday night. Get it? Beery? Field? We didn't go because I get nervous when I'm surrounded by large gatherings of Germans... and kielbasas.



This is a sign at a popular local Saugatuck dry cleaners. After eating the rich fucking breakfasts, drinking shitloads of wine and going out to dinner for every meal, the fudge line pretty much starts (and ends) in everybody's pants.

And there you have it. Saugatuck 2008. It was great while it lasted but now I'm fucking tired, getting a goddamn cold and I'm crabbier than I was before I left. But, hey, at least I don't have any money left!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

I Call Time Out!

So, I haven't had a vacation in, like, fuckever. The Old Lady and I were supposed to go away last spring, during the spawnages' break, but, if you'll remember, I spent that time at the goddamn Mayo Clinic, filling up five-gallon jugs of whiz and getting my death-sentence overturned by "real" doctors. And thanks a LOT for bringing up a sore subject.

Anywhich, my folks offered to watch Mr. Z and Miss O for a long weekend sometime and, well, it's about fucking sometime. We're meeting them halfway tomorrow, handing the spawnages over, and then driving up to Saugatuck for a few days of whatever one does in Saugatuck... I dunno, tuckin' in our Saugas, I guess. It doesn't really matter where we're going, though -- I just need a fucking break. My motivation is for shit, my crab-o-meter is off the fucking charts and my brain is floating around in my skull like a loose stool. I SO need a few days of sleeping in, eating good food and, most of all, not hearing a 24-7 running dialogue of who the cutest goddamn Pokemon is. (For the record, it's Diglett.)

And I don't think I'm bringing the laptop, so it's gonna be even duller than usual around here for the next few days. I think we'll all benefit from that. Frankly, posting, lately, has been like pulling teeth... outta my ass. Perhaps I shall find inspiration in Saugatuck, most likely in the form of a commemorative spoon and/or oversized novelty sunglasses.

Carry on.

Monday, September 29, 2008

I Got It, I Got It... KONK!

Oh, the pain that is the middle school gym class for the 6th grade intellectual. Apparently, today in P.E., Mr. Z got hit on the top of the noggin with a football. He said "Someone kicked it really high and then I looked up and it konked me right on the head." I asked him if he thought of maybe, oh I don't know, catching said ball, but he looked at me as if to say, "Why the shit would I want to do that?!" He summed it up by stating, "I'm not the kinda guy to play football... I like cute things. Stuffed animals, Pokemon... cute farts."

Of course, I explained to him that that sort of information is best kept on the D.L. while actually IN gym class.

I then reminded him that, while he may not particularly care for football, he is hardly "non-athletic." He likes to ride his bike and run around, he hikes at camp all summer, and he loves swimming. Like it or not, Mr. Z, you're actually kinda sporty, dude.

We're trying to break him of the "it's me vs. the jocks" attitude he's been cultivating, of late. But it's really fucking hard to do when his neanderthal gym teacher keeps reinforcing the boneheaded us vs. them gym class environment. He picks all the athletic kids as captains and then they pick and pick until they're left with the nerdarino dregs. You'd think by 2008 these chuckleheads would've come up with a more equitable sorting method.

Attention, Coach Nutsack, here's an idea: how 'bout counting off by twos, ya fuck!

Anywhich, we've assured Mr. Z that he's only gotta suffer through about seven more years of gym class and then he can trade in his jockstrap for a life of the mind. In the meantime, I think I'll send him to school tomorrow in a helmet.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Volun-tearing Me a New One...

Mr. Z and I volunteered our services to the Obama campaign headquarters in Lansing yesterday and it turned out to be a surprisingly great experience. They called last week and asked if I wanted to help out, saying I could do things like canvassing, calling people and/or STUFFING ENVELOPES. "YES!" I said. "I CAN HANDLE STUFFING ENVELOPES! SIGN ME UP!!!!" What better way to support the campaign and teach my son the importance of participating in the democratic process than by folding paper and licking glue. (And it was just a bonus that I wouldn't have to come in contact with any actual PEOPLE.)

So, after getting lost for about a 1/2 hour, the boy and I finally pulled up to the headquarters and bopped on in to start a-lickin' paper. But as soon as I talked to the man-boy in charge there (who I'm pretty sure was about 15 1/2), I learned that there would be no envelope stuffing. No sir... I was handed a clipboard, pen and a stack of voter registration sheets and told "Now get on out there and get some people registered!"

Son of a shitfuck.

I am SO not a clipboard-holdin', voter-registerin', stranger-going-up-to-in' kinda dude. I'm really not into "dealing" with "people." I'm not a "go-getter." I don't like "humans." But there I was, clipboard in hand, heading on over to the goddamn Frandor mall to walk the parking lot, trolling for victims.

And it did kinda suck. Basically, everyone we went up to was already registered -- it was mostly families heading over to the Halloween USA temporarium, or polyester sweatsuit-wearin' grannies shuffling over to Jo-Ann fabrics, or polyester sweatsuit-wearin' moms checking out Michaels Crafts-n-Which, or polyester sweatsuit-wearin' families heading over to Sears to buy more polyester sweatsuits. Everyone was very pleasant, though, and a lot of people asked where they could get an Obama shirt like mine, and it was heartening to realize that everyone seemed to be registered (and supporting Obama)... which is a good thing.

But it was hot as shit and when Mr. Z said, "Dad, this really isn't as fun as I thought it was going to be," I realized we needed to switch locales, and quick. So, I checked our list of "hot spots" and I thought we'd do better closer to downtown, so we loaded up the car and headed on over to the Rite-Aid on MLK Boulevard.

Bingo!

And by bingo, I mean that we signed up ONE person, instead of ZERO. But hey, one is good, goddammit! That woman could very well be the deciding vote! And it'd all be thanks to crabbydad and Mr. Z! You're welcome, future!

So, yeah, one person registered in three hours. But shit, it was probably more than you did for the country this weekend, by gum. It did feel good to finally get off my pointy ass and do something, though, instead of just complaining about things and just thinking that I should really get off my pointy ass and do something. And it kinda demystified the whole volunteering thing and showed me that three hours out of a whole weekend is not a lot of time if you feel like you're actually doing something positive, even if it's only in a kinda puny way. And I think it was good to show Mr. Z that it's important to get involved in causes that are bigger than you or your family or your video games and that if a whole shitload of people get out there and just do a puny bit, it can actually end up having a huge fucking impact.

But most of all, I realized that, if you're going to go out with a clipboard in your hand and interrupt strangers on their relaxing Saturday afternoon by talking politics at them, it's very wise to bring along your 10 year old kid with you if you don't want to get punched in the head.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Cheesus!

Some people see Jesus in their wet beef sandwiches, while others find the Virgin Mary in their plate of pulled pork. Me? I slice a piece of Jarlsburg and end up with a fucking SKULL SANDWICH!



Maybe tomorrow I'll just have a Tim-Burton-butter-and-jelly sammy.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

1 + 1 = I'm A Moron

So I was helping Mr. Z with his math homework, this afternoon, and it mostly consisted of converting metric measurements from one size to another, like kilograms to grams or millimeters to centimeters and shit like that. At first I was like, "ah, no fucking problem," but as I was trying to explain it to him, my withered synapses fucking seized up on me and I found myself rapidly spinning down some bottomless numerical vortex, and I began second-guessing every answer and well, frankly, it got pretty ugly pretty quick.

We made it through to the other side with only a few tears (and he was pretty upset, too) and then we closed the book and I let him watch some Spongebob so that any trace amounts of understanding he may have gleaned from our little study session were instantly erased and replaced with "GAAAAHHHHHHH!"

So, the Old Lady gets home around dinner time and I started explaining what an ass-ripper this fucking math homework was, you know, to get the rightful sympathy props, and I even handed her the textbook to show her the devil's handiwork contained within. She looks it over and says, "Well, here's all you need: 'If you're going from a larger measurement to smaller one, you multiply and if you're going from smaller to larger, you divide.' What's the trouble?" I grabbed the book from her in the classic Moe Howard way, adding the requisite, "Lemme see that, you!" and soon realized that if I had only READ THE GODDAMN DIRECTIONS FIRST, the fucking hour long battle that I had put the boy and myself through would have been, maybe, a 20 minute skirmish, and I wouldn't have wasted all that valuable stomach acid that was at that moment bubbling up my ulcer-studded esophagus.

And the kicker? As the Old Lady casually glanced over the answers, she found that four or five of them were TOTALLY WRONG and that I had basically told Mr. Z to do the exact opposite of what he was supposed to do.

Have I mentioned that I'm not that good with the math? What the shit, man?! I really thought I knew what the fuck I was doing, too! That's what makes it worse. It would have been one thing if I were like, "Shit, man, I just don't get this... you're on your own, Mr. Z," but NO, I had FIGURED IT OUT and I was HELPING HIM to FIGURE IT OUT FOR HIMSELF!

So, whereas he was only mildly confused BEFORE he started his homework, now he is TOTALLY fucking confused.

Excellent, my work here is done.

And if any of you care to do any extra credit, here's one of the problems:

On Sunday, Li ran 0.8 km. On Monday, she ran 7,200 m. On which day did Li run farther? Use estimation to explain why your answer makes sense.

(HINT: The fact that "Li" is the 2nd most common surname in China is, apparently, not really relevant.)

Monday, September 22, 2008

Should I Stay or Should I Go... to School

For some reason, I'm more confident in picking out Miss O's outfits this school year. This is either due to the fact that I'm just better at picking out things that go together or, more likely, that I've stopped giving a shit about what goes together and I'm just picking out things that I would wear, were I a six-year-old girl. Case in point, today's outfit:



Clash shirt, b/w, horizontally striped leggings and Chucks. I'd SO wear that if I were six. Shit, if they made that outfit in my size, I'd wear it tomorrow.

(By the way, Miss O just fell out of bed as I was typing this. I heard a "thud/AHH!" and ran into her room to find her climbing back in to her bed. I asked her what happened and she said, "I fell out of bed" in a way that made it sound more like "I fucking fell outta bed, ya dumbshit, whattya think just happened?!" I blame thank the Clash shirt for the 'tude.)

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Come Back... Come Baaaaaaaack...



Mr. Z's been riding his bike to the middle school this year, and he's asked me to ride along with him ("only to the path leading up to the school") until he feels comfortable going it alone. He says he should be ready to fly solo by Monday.

Unfortunately, I won't be.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Who's The Boob Now?

Ah, the perils of telecommuting.

So, you may or may not know (care?) that while I live in Michigan, I work in Chicago... via TV. I have a camera here, they have a camera there, I can see them, they can see me, blee, blah, blew -- it's all very Jetsons. That is, if the Jetsons were real people and really fucking boring and instead of the totally hot Judy Jetson, there'd be me. Correction -- her mom Jane was way hotter, but then I've always had a thing for cartoon redheads.

Anywhich, the part of the company that I do most of my work for has recently moved upstairs, to a different space. In this new space is an extra room that's used for various things, such as testing games, having brainstorms, conducting testing on new ideas, etceterblah. This room is also known as the "nursing room," where one of the employees, who has recently spawned, secretes herself a couple of times daily to, well, secrete nourishment for said spawnage. It's great that she has a nice room in which to do her pumpage, and, so far, it hasn't been a big deal, except for the fact that I think a couple of the spawnless workers are a little ookie about what's "going on" in there.

So, cut to today. We had set up a couple of times to test this new game we're working on, and, toward the end of the first testing session, I had to excuse myself to go pick up Miss O from school. By the time I got back home, gave her and Mr. Z a snack and got them settled in with their homework, I popped back upstairs to see if I could catch the second testing session.

When I got to my room, the TV connection had disconnected, which happens a lot. Whenever there's a fucking hiccup in the network, either the camera freezes, or it cuts the connection. No biggie. I picked up the remote, hit redial and waited for the other camera to answer.

Well, it answered, all right. But instead of phoning into the testing session, I had, inadvertantly, dialed into A MILKING SESSION!

Luckily, I hit the disconnect button before I had time to really "latch-on" to what had happened. I felt horrible and IM'd frantically to my co-workers, telling them to apologize for me and explain that it was TOTALLY an accident and that I didn't see ANYTHING and, even if I did, which I DIDN'T, it wasn't anything I hadn't seen thousands of times before when the Old Lady was pumping to provide milky nourishment for the spawnage.

And when everyone convinced me that it was finally okay to dial in again (after about 100 IMs querying "Really?" "Are you SURE?" "You're not fucking with me, are you?" "I'll kill you if she's still in there!"), I was able to apologize to her "in person," and she assured me that it was no biggie, and that my sudden, shocking appearance hadn't caused her milk ducts to dry up, and that the La Leche League wasn't going to show up at my door and beat me senseless with breast pumps and rubber nipples.

I'm such a jackass.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Dad, I Want to Be in a Jug Band...

Tonight's bedtime chat with Mr. Z:

MR. Z: If I ever have a punk rock band, I'm going to call myself 'Saggy Boobs.'

ME: Saggy Boobs?! Where did you get that?!

MR. Z: It's like that guy Iggy Pop. [pause] Saggy Boobs! [laughing hysterically]

ME: [trying not to laugh as hysterically and failing miserably] What would your band be called. Saggy Boobs and the what?

MR. Z: [thinking] Saggy Boobs and the... Breast Avengers!

ME: [nose laugh almost sending giant snot ball across room]

MR. Z: [suddenly serious] But that's only my nickname. My real name would be Sagbert Boobyoolus.

[silence]

[We both fucking lose it.]

ME: All right, c'mon. That's enough. Now try to chill out and go to sleep. And please don't tell any of this to your mom.

MR. Z: I won't. [chuckling to self] Heh... Saggy Boobs...

Is it wrong that part of me really wants him to form that band?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Why Don't YOU Shower and I'LL Show Her...

Now that Mr. Z's in middle school, recess is, as Heidi Klum says, "out" and gym-class-every-day is "in." The boy's not too thrilled with that concept, being an "inside kid" and all. But he's a trooper and he's rolling with it. And along with daily gym class comes the ol' post-gym-class NUDE SHOWER! I remember 'splainin' this to the boy before the year started and he was basically like, "Seriously?! I have to shower with a buncha dudes at the same time... with all our wieners showing and everything?!" But he seemed fairly cool with the idea, so I dropped the wiener-talk.

Well, cut to last week, and Mr. Z tells me that when the gym teacher told them to "hit the showers," he and his friend Mr. J were the ONLY TWO DUDES WHO HIT SAID SHOWERS! And it's been that way ever since! I asked him about it and he said, "Everyone else makes some kind of excuse, like 'I don't want to get my hair wet,' or 'I already showered this morning,' but I was all sweaty and it would've been totally gross going to class like that."

Hear hear, Mr. Z! Let's hear it for logic and a keen understanding of personal hygiene (read: 10-year-old-assfunk). The boy is fearless! I asked him if it was weird being one of the only kids to shower, and he said, "No... why?" EXACTLY! It's not weird to shower when you're all sweaty. What's fucking weird is running around for a half an hour, peeling off your drenched gym togs, and then sliding your slimy ass and all that pre-pubescent fromunda cheese back into your clean nappies. Let that heady brew stew for the rest of the day and you, my friend, have got yourself a recipe for a yeasty, smoldering case of rotting generals.

I've spent all this time worrying about Mr. Z making the transition to middle school, what with him being a coupla years younger than everyone else in his class, but here he is chillaxin' and just being a total dude. (By the way, he used the word "chillaxin'" the other day and I almost snorked an entire turkey sandwich outta my left nostril, I laughed so hard.) Anywhich, there may still be some rough patches to come, this year, but I'm tellin' ya, the boy is just doing a stellar job in the going-with-the-flowage department.

Oh, and while I'm thinking about it, when the fuck did showering after gym class become optional?! I remember Mr. Batista, at Shepherd Jr. High, standing there every goddamn day eyeballin' every single one of our pinkie-sized dorks, not checking off our names on his fucking clipboard until he deemed our micro marble pouches sufficiently spotless and sparkly. It was fucking creepy as hell and may be the reason that, today, I can only shower fully clothed.

But leave it to my son the naturist to reclaim the shower area for the crabbyfamily! And to show him just how proud I am, tomorrow I shall bathe sockless!

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

Spreadin' Those Nuts on a Daily Basis...

Peaner-burr and jelly. That's what Mr. Z has eaten for lunch EVERY SINGLE DAY since he started going to school. Literally. He even eats it for lunch at home. That's peaner-burr and jelly in second grade, third grade, fourth grade, fifth grade and now sixth grade -- every fucking day.

Don't get me wrong -- I love peaner-burr. Still slap together an occasional nutty/jelly-y treat myself, now and again. But when I was a wee crablette, I varied the fucker up a little. PB&J one day, a Carl Buddig turkey and mustard sammy the next. You remember Carl Buddig -- that sliced turquee brick that was so microtome-thinly-sliced that you could practically read a fucking book through it. Ah, Carl Buddig. I remember wrapping a couple slices of that shit around a baby dill gherkin and then wrapping that in a Kraft Single and choking the whole thing down as I knelt in front of the open cold cuts drawer in my parents' fridge.

Sorry, I just ralphed up into the back of my nose for a second there.

Anywhich, I'm having a fucking fucker of a time trying to break the boy out of the PB&J death-grip he's got on his lunches. The lad will not budge. Turkey sammy? Fuck no. Chicken salad? Nuh-uh. Tuna? Are you fucked?! I could be a real dick and stick a hard-boiled egg in his lunch, like my mom used to do to me, but I consider that a form of child abuse, so that's out. I'm seriously starting to worry that he's gonna get some sort of peaner-burr-related affliction. Like a peanut-butter goiter, or peanut-burrsitis.

I'm beseeching you, dear reader -- gimme some suggestions! There's gotta be some sort of non-legume-and-jelled-fruit-based sandwich making material out there that he'll allow to pass into his peanut-burr-caked maw. What is it?! Oh, and as the boy stated to a waitress who asked him if he wanted bacon with his pancakes at a restaurant back in Park Ridge, IL when he was about four years old, "We don't eat mammals," so keep that in mind.

Winner gets a free CD, if I ever get around to finishing that fucker. (And to win, he must not only eat the item suggested, but must also ask to have it worked into the lunch-option rotation... a rotation that, up until now, only involves a rotating peaner-burr and jelly sammich.)

Sunday, September 07, 2008

I'll Just Shut up Now...

What's the name of the phenomenon wherein you start telling your spouse about something that you think is "HEE-LARIOUS!," be it a joke (usually dirty/offensive) or a story about something that happened at work or whatever, and the minute you start to explain it, you realize that she/he is never going to find it even the least bit amusing and what the fuck were you thinking when you thought she'd actually find it funny, and as you continue down this never-ending bottomless free-fall of regret, you get more and more pissed at yourself for ever thinking this was a good idea and you end up feeling like a complete douche, most likely pissing off your spouse in the process, and you finally put yourself out of your own misery saying something like, "Eh... nevermind, it's too hard to explain and it's not really that funny, after all. Forget it."

While this pretty much happens to me daily at the crabbshack, tonight it happened while I was attempting to describe what rickrolling was to the Old Lady. See, I had just seen this great rickroll version of McCain's speech and, like a fucking moron, I thought I could describe the video to the Old Lady, somehow convincing her that it was funny and, because I was the one describing it so hilariously, that I was hilarious, as well.

Fail.

It went something like this, "So, there was this hilarious version of the blue-screen portion of McCain's speech that someone totally rickrolled and they cut up a bunch of Obama's speeches and actually had HIM singing the lyrics and... okay, lemme backup... so, rickrolling is when someone tricks someone into following a link to a Rick Astley song/video... usually "Never Gonna Give You Up"... see, it's kinda like a phony phone-call but it always ends up with a Rick Astley song and... anyway, someone spliced together Obama doing the lyrics... but the real song was playing in the background and... and then McCain's just standing there with this confused look on his face and... and the crowd was... and see Obama's up there on the... and... he... uh... Eh... nevermind, it's too hard to explain and it's not really that funny, after all. Forget it."

There's gotta be a word for that.

I'm gonna call it an "anec-d'oh!"

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

< Insert bad pun title here >

I've had nathan to say lately, really, hence the no typee. First, the spawnage have started school this week, so it's been a major pigfuck 'round these parts. Now that Mr. Z is in middle school (holy fuckstain?!) and Miss O is still at the elementary school, drop-offs and pickups have been impossible to figure out without a goddamn slide-rule and laser-guided miter box. And, while Mr. Z seems to be transitioning into 6th grade like a fucking champ, the stress it's causing me has been practically unbearable -- I'm tossing and turning every night, and having nightmares about showing up in class naked, with shampoo in my hair and completely unprepared for my algebra test. And I have this sinking feeling that, when I'm not looking, the Old Lady's gonna give me a swirlie and/or wedgie.

The other reason I haven't been typing is that I can't tear myself away from the fucking political blogs, of late. I'm having major electile dysfuckshit. I basically just sit here and do the bookmark rounds (one, two, three, four, five, six... and then seven just for good measure), and then I bury my head in my hands and think, "If this trigger-happy Methuselah and his fascist evangelical moose-killing-running-mate win this fucker, how quickly will I be able to move the crabbyfamily to Canda and, more importantly, do they have Trader Joe's in Toronto?"

Maybe I'll get lucky and fall into some sort of short-term coma or something. Then, if things work out in November, I'll snap out of it, but if Wrinkles McCranky pulls it outta his dusty John McAnus, well, they can just pull the ol' plug. Sounds like a plan. I'll start huffing paint thinner tomorrow.

In the meantime, I've gotta hit the sack so I can start my naked-shampoo algebra dream. Nighty-night!

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Nary a Poppins...

So, we interviewed a new babysitter last night to replace the one we've had for the last coupla years who graduated last spring. It fucking sucks finding a new sitter. At least the right sitter. I mean, the one we interviewed seems nice enough and all, but she's not necessarily "our kind of people," if I can say that without sounding too much like a douche, which I probably can't. She was wearing some kind of stanky perfume that's still a-lingerin' in the crabbshack, she mentioned that Sunday nights are out because that's when she has her "sorority meetings," and she talked as if, like, all her sentences ended in question marks????

She did have a little nose ring, though, which hinted at a whiff of alterna-somethingness, but shit man, everyone has a fucking nose ring nowadays... they're kinda like piano ties and Japanese sun bandannas were to the 80s. She does like kids, though, and it seems like she has experience. I dunno. It's only three hours a week and the occasional Saturday night. I just wish she had shown up with dreadlocks and a sleeve of tattoos, an acoustic guitar slung over her shoulder plastered in Ramones, The Jam and Clash stickers, a desire to teach art and foreign languages to the spawnage and an insatiable need to mop our floors and scrub out our toilets.

Oh well, I guess, instead, she'll just teach the spawnage invaluable things like the Greek alphabet, how to hold back your friend's hair while she's barfing and how to get boys to buy you Jäger and jello shooters.

Hmm... maybe we need to interview a couple more.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Just Call Me Fred G. Sanford... and the "G" Stands for "Green!"

Ha! Ha, I say! Call me a pack rat, will you? Well, who's laughing now, hmmmm?

Okay, back up. I have this drawer, next to the bed, where I chuck all the unrecyclable shit that we seem to plow through on a weekly basis.



You've got your empty Flonase containers in there, some prescription bottles, razors, contact lens containers, floss containers, prosthetic limbs, glass eyes, you name it, it's in there. And, of course, I get a mild amount of shit for hoarding all this plasticrap from the Old Lady, usually taking the form of something akin to, "What the shit are you possible going to do with that?!"

So, back up over the last coupla weeks and Mr. Z has this cough/cold and the Old Lady is hit hard with this major plague where she's sleeping like she's got Boola-Boola and she's horking up her alveoli like she's been gargling with asbestos and gravel. And I'm thinking, "What the shit is going on in this fucking house?! It's the middle of August and everyone's illin' like it's February!" Which prompts me to go on a major crabbshack disinfectapalooza.

I start wiping down doorknobs and faucets, clean off all the handles on the kitchen cabinets, mop the floor, brush out the fucking crappers -- just went total Howard Hughes on its ass.

Then I take a look at the toothbrushes. Mr. Z's got like three of them that look like they're from the 80s, standing in a glass with primordially oozy streptocaca floating around in the bottom of it. Miss O has two that are basically stuck to the counter, inches away from the shitter. And the Old Lady's and my toothbrushes (teethbrush?) are sitting atop our bathroom counter that's basically veiled in the snot and lung-oyster silt that the Old Lady's been emitting for the last 14 days.

I was ready to fucking yook.

First thing I did? Went to the unrecyclable shit drawer, of course. Pull out four empty Flonase bottles, whip off the tops, run down to the toolbox to get some strips of velcro, run back up to the bathroooms, do some fancy MacGyverin' and, VOYLA!



I call it the "Sani-Crab Industries Toothbrush CrabbyCaddy 3000," and now, each member of the crabbyfamily is the proud owner of one of those mofos. And to officially wipe the bacteria-caked slate clean, I bought everyone their very own brand-spankin new Preserve Recycled Toothbrush (thanks to Burbanmom for the tip!).

That, my friends, is fucking crabgenuity at its finest. Myriad viruses and pathogens will surely continue their Bataan death march into the crabbshack, but our teeth will remain microbe-free. Shit, our mouths are so clean, you can practically eat off of them.

Best of all, even the Old Lady was impressed. And if she thinks that's impressive, wait 'til she sees what I have in store for her spent birth control pill containers and my old asthma inhalers.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

And on That Note...

Mr. Z returned from camp, on Friday, with the dreaded "note home." That crisp, white, stapled sheet of paper, with the little miscreant's misdeed lurking within. But what could it say? Mr. Z is not a bully. He's never uttered a "bad word" in his life. He's respectful to adults. What could he have possibly done to warrant a "note home"?!





And just how does one punish rogue armpit flatus?

No tank tops for a week!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

You Want A Slo-Poke or an All Day Sucker?

So, not to belabor this Weird Al thing ('cuz frankly, I really have zero desire to turn this blog into CrALbbydad), but Mr. Z has been curious about what the original versions of the songs in the "Polkarama" song sound like. There's tunes like "Beverly Hills," by Weezer and "Take Me Out," by Franz Ferdinand, but also "Drop It Like It's Hot" by Snoop, and "Don't Cha" by the Pussycat Dolls. So I was showing him a couple of the videos, and he'd keep saying, "Wow, this is TOTALLY different!" basically meaning that he was scared of these musical misanthropes and wanted to quickly return to the oompah-pahcifying strains of the major-key, Yankovician tranquALity.

The one tune he keeps focusing on is "Candy Shop" by Fitty Cent. He and Miss O have been running around the crabbshack singing, "I'll take you to the candy shop/I'll let you lick a lollipop/Go 'head girl don't you stop/Keep goin' till you hit the spot, whoa!" So, like a fucking moron, I started to show them the video for the song, which is basically Fitty pulling up to a mansion in a Lamborghini and then opening the front door, revealing scads of fancy ladies, in sundry states of undressitude, puckering their dewy lips and gyrating their sundry dewy protuberances in his general direction. Now I'm no prude, mind you, but I just didn't really feel like explaining to the spawnage what the phrase "you gon' back that thing up, or should I push up on it?" meant at that particular moment.

So, at dinner tonight, we had this exchange:

MR. Z: So, dad, I still don't get what that guy means by "I'll take you to the candy shop"?

ME: Well, I already explained that it's just a metaphor. He's just comparing that house with all those women in it to a candy shop. You know how you and Miss O really like candy? Well, he really likes houses with lots of women in them.

MR. Z: So what does he mean by "I'll let you lick my lollipop"?

ME: Um...

OLD LADY: (quickly jumping in) It's kinda like kissing!

ME: (after laugh-blowing a giant snot outta my nose) That's right. Kissing.

MISS O: Yuck.

ME: Hey, who wants dessert?!

I'm sorry, but I just can't handle the spawnage getting into that spum-laden misogynist bullshit. Fuck it, I'm just gonna disconnect the MTV, throw out the radios and buy an assload of Burl Ives records. And then, when Mr. Z hits his teens, I'll let him listen to the nice, wholesome music I listened to at that age -- the Ramones, Ted Nugent, the Sex Pistols, Bow Wow Wow, the Dead Kennedys and Iron Maiden.



(By the way, just in case you're keeping count, this mess of a post was #600. No wonder I'm so fucking tired.)

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

We All Remember Our First Yankovic...

WARNING: My musical geekitude is strongly expressed in this post.

M. Z is loving the Weird Al CD we got him for his birthday. He's been asking us to bring it along on the drive to and from camp, he's listening to it in his room while he's reading, and he's trying desperately to memorize all the lyrics to "White & Nerdy." All this might sound, well, white and/or nerdy, but I'm fucking loving it. It's the first time he's ever really gotten into music (with the exception of his yearslong obsession with "Barbie Girl," that I prefer not to talk about) and, to me, it's very exciting. I was worrying that he was never going to get that into music -- at least non-novelty song, popular music. And, believe it or not, I'm not lumping Weird Al into the "novelty song" category because, basically, the dude is a fucking genius.

That's right, I said Weird Al Yankovic is a fucking genius.

Yes, he wrote "My Bologna," and "Another One Rides the Bus," and "Eat It," and "I Think I'm a Clone Now," (which are all hilarious, mind you) but the dude is pretty fucking subversive. He presents himself as this unhip, wacky dorkus, but he's basically skewering popular music with every song he puts out. This is best illustrated in the polka medleys that he includes on every CD. He takes all the hits of the year, speeds them all up, switches them all into major keys and adds Spike Jonesian whistles, bells and sound effects, basically turning the tune into a major fuck-you to Top 40 radio. All the angsty rockers end up looking like complete douches and the rappers, with all their self-important macho posturing, fare even worse. Case in point:



(He also does an amazing polka version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" that almost surpasses the original in brilliance.)

So, he's got this kinda stealthy cutting satire going on in his radio-friendly covers of pop tunes. Fine. But he really shines when he displays his true musical geekitude. Now, if you know me (and I think you don't), you know that I'm a HUGE Brian Wilson devotee. Ever since I was a wee crabbykid, I would geek out to Beach Boys albums, studying the harmonies and flipping my lid over all the bizarre non-sequiturian changes and instrumentation. I have all the box sets and my nipples still freeze and snap off when I listen to the vocals-only tracks on the Pet Sounds rarities disk I have.

So, you can imagine my delight when I heard the second track on Mr. Z's CD, called "Pancreas." It is pure Brian Wilson Smile-era schizophrenatude, and it reveals an intimate knowledge, on the part of Mr. Yankovic, of all things Wilsonian. It's steeped in themes and variations from "God Only Knows," "Heroes & Villains," "Good Vibrations," "Vegetables," and "That Same Song," and, to my further delight, it's Mr. Z's favorite tune on the disk. He listens to it over and over and over. Last night, as he was listening to it before bed, he enthused, "I just want to hear it one more time -- I almost have all the lyrics memorized!"

A single tear welled up in my eye. He'd grown up just like me... My boy was just like me...

And, the song's hilarious, to boot. I can't think of anything I'd rather have the boy listening to right now. Of course, the transition to him listening to all my Beach Boys CDs is now that much easier. My master musical plan is falling into place.

Anywhich, it's now your turn to experience Weird Al's "Pancreas," his tribute to Brian Wilson. And please listen all the way to the end... you won't regret it.



-------------AL-DENDUM---------------
A big shout out to all the members of weirdalforum.com who are visiting (saw your visits via statcounter)! It's comforting (and a tad disconcerting) knowing that you're out there monitoring all things Al. Or is it Al things all?

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Make it Work, Miss O!

Well, it looks like Miss O has a future in fashion. Yesterday, we received a huge box with some new blinds for our bedroom, and the contents were wrapped up in shitloads of bubble wrap. Miss O asked if she could have all of it and I reluctantly said "okay," as long as she did all the popping on the opposite side of the house.

There was no popping to be had, however, as she was apparently transforming the plastic poppers into haute couture. After about twenty minutes, she came sashaying back into the room modeling the results. I give you the first outfit in Miss O's "Popparel" line:





Now I'm no fashionista, but I think that outfit beats the shit out half the crap on Project Runway. Maybe I'll give her the box of packing peanuts that the new chairs came in and let her really go to town.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

It's a Burl!

Well, I wasn't going to say anything, but the Old Lady and I have just welcomed a new member to the Crabbyfamily. It was a tough delivery, but everything turned out just fine. Say "hello" to our bouncing baby... DINING ROOM TABLE AND CHAIRS!






And look, it has my legs! Actually, it's the "Kyoto" table with the "Jake" chairs all from our favorite furniture-crack-dealer, Room & Board. This is where the freelance money goes, people. We've got a big ol' empty house and, apparently, we're supposed to fill it with shit. And unfortunately, the Old Lady and I like our shit mid-century and expensive instead of late 80s and denim. Ain't that a bitch.

We also got a lamp (which we're returning 'cuz it's a piece of shit) and a new mattress (which we're keeping because our old one looks like "Mother's" bed from Psycho):



We got all this shit at once 'cuz they charge like 250 smackers to deliver it, so we figured we'd just go for it and not eat for a coupla months. The bummer is, I saw a little dent/scratch on the table and made the mistake of mentioning it to the Old Lady. You can't really see it unless you're looking for it, but we kinda figured, for the fucking cash we threw down for the mofo, it should be pretty much blemish free. So, they're sending out another one and will swap it out when it gets here in a coupla weeks. I know that makes us seem like dickhead yuppfucks, and I know we're killing the planet by making them drive another one out from Minnesota, but shit, man, I never drive anywhere and don't even leave the fucking house and we're getting our veggies from a local farm and I'm composting, goddammit, so lay the fuck off and let me have a dining room table so I can invite the friends I don't have over for a fancy dinner, all right?!

In fact, if any of you gentle readers are ever in town, consider this an open invitation to come sup with us at our fancy new table, and to plant your gentle asses upon our fancy chairs. I draw the line at the new mattress, though. If you stay over, you have to use "Mother's" mattress, which is now residing in the garage. Which is right next to the old broken TV and the old broken microwave. Hey, wait a minute... I'm not sure but I think we may just have ourselves a new GUEST HOUSE! Man, we ARE fancy!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

DON'T ANSWER THAT!!!!

All right, will someone please tell me what the shit I'm supposed to do about those goddamn magazine subscription people who come to the door every other week? Seriously, word is out that I'm Pushover VonSuckerberg and they're flocking to the crabbshack like horseflies to shitballs... the horseflies being them and the shitballs, I guess, being me.

I mean, I've read an assload of articles about how horribly these people are treated, how they're plied with drugs and beaten and they barely make any money and the vans that take drive them from state to state have never passed emission standards and run over baby bunnies and chipmunks and, instead of gas, they run on the blood of orphaned kittens and they steal everyone's credit card numbers and then come back to your house when you're not home and use all your spoons to cook their "works" in, and they go through your underwear drawer and stick your toothbrush in their asscracks and perform unspeakable acts on all your doorknobs, and shit. I understand all that.

But when this person is standing there, selling the shit out of these magazines, I mean just workin' the pitch, and saying how they're trying to improve their public speaking skills and, by the way, "how am I doing so far?" and telling you about how they're really doing this so they don't have to be out on the streets selling drugs, and they're trying to make a better life for themselves and their 11 kids, and they're just five subscriptions away from a bonus, which means they can buy that iron lung for baby Jimmy, who was born with a hole in his spleen god bless his soul, and can't I just find it in my heart to buy one subscription, or not even buy a subscription, just extend a subscription we're already getting 'cuz any little bit helps.

And I fucking babble something like, "Weeelll... we sure have a lot of subscriptions already and--"

"Oh, you don't even have to buy yourself a subscription," they add. "You can purchase a subscription for the LOCAL BOYS AND GIRLS CLUB who could really use magazines for all those poor little children who are just DYING for something to read, something other than the foreclosure notices tacked up onto their front doors."

And then I'm fucked, and I say, "Okay, then, how much is a subscription for, say, Jack & Jill magazine for the Boys & Girls Club," thinking it can't be THAT much can it? And they say, "Oh, that's a cheap one -- only 43 dollars!" And I'm all, "What the shit?!" and they're all, "God bless you, kind sir," and I'm all, "Fuck! That's like the fifth subscription I've been talked into this month," and they're all, "SUCKER! I'm gonna clear 75 cents on this sale -- just enough for a coupla band-aids to apply to the contusions I'm gonna get when my boss finds out I only sold four subscriptions," and I'm all, "Let me get my checkbook."

So I'm like a prisoner in the fucking house all day -- afraid to answer the goddamn door because I might get maga-zinged. And the doorbell rings like every half hour already, 'cuz the Old Lady orders shit from Zappos or Mini Boden or Banana Republic every other day, and I have to peek out the upstairs window to see if there's a delivery truck in the driveway, and if there isn't, I have to cower under my desk until they go away. And I--

WAIT! There it goes again! DAMMIT! Shh! Don't say anything. SHHHHH!!!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

It's Like a Video Game... But Realer!

Friday night, as the Old Lady and I were watching the fucking mind-exploding opening ceremony of the Olympics, I hit the "record" button on the ol' DVR, thinking, "You know, the spawnage should see this. They might really dig it." Of course, I also thought, "Right, like they'll really give a carp -- they'll get bored after 30 seconds and then ask if they can turn on the goddamn Wii." But, since recording it didn't require any more exertion than moving my thumb two centimeters to the right on the remote, I figured I'd put forth the effort.

Cut to last night, after dinner, when the spawnage asked if they could watch one of the recorded "Brady Bunch" episodes. I suggested that, instead, we should all watch the "really awesome" Olympics opening ceremony, to which they responded with an enthusiastic, "Aww... c'mon... wah, stupid, bleh...." The Old Lady and I worked fucking hard to sell it to them -- "Ooh, look -- 2008 Tai Chi masters all moving in unison! Look how perfectly they're all lined up! Can you imagine how long they must've practiced to DO that?! HEY, A WHALE!"

But the spawnage weren't really buying it. They were all set to watch how Marcia transformed Molly Weber from a bespectacled nerd-flower into a totally fucking hot, macramé-sweater-filling sex-nymphlette. (And, frankly, who could blame them?)

But then that glowing blue earth-sphere emerged from the floor of the stadium, with those physics-defying equator-walkers flip-flopping around it, and those singers started belting out that song entitled, "If You Don't Cry at This, Then You Are a Heartless Human Husk," and Mr. Z and Miss O suddenly fell strangely mute.



We all stared silently at this insane Miyazaki-meets-Mario-Galaxy spectacle and before long, I look over at Mr. Z and he's wiping tears from his eyes. They were both saying things like, "OH MY GOD!" and "WHOA!" and the kid-friendly version of "WHATTHESHIT?!" and I could actually hear the sound of their tiny little lids flipping like they've never flipped before.

So, we watched the whole thing and then I sent Mr. Z upstairs to get ready for his shower, while I cleaned the kitchen. When I got up to the bathroom, he was standing there, basically sobbing into his towel. I thought something horrible had happened, like all of his Pokemon cards had spontaneously combusted or he had accidentally peed on his DS, so I asked him what was up. After a minute, he caught his breath and said, "That was just SO spectacular! It was just beautiful!"

It's so fucking incredible that Mr. Z feels stuff as strongly as he does. Sure, it can be a pain-in-the-shitter when he's flipping his lid because he thinks Miss O's staring at him funny or when he thinks we're picking on him when we're not, but to think of just how intensely he's experiencing the world around him -- I dunno, I guess since I'm not as evolved, emotionally, it seems pretty fucking cool.

I won't lie -- adolescence is gonna be fucking brutal. Especially when he stops thinking that the Old Lady and I aren't "the greatest parents in the whole wide world," and REALLY starts to exert his will. And dating is gonna suck -- the first time he ever gets dumped? Holy fuckstain. I don't think I can even fathom the angsty, teenage Mr. Z lid-flippage that is to come. But I'll take my emotional, sensitive, cries-at-the-Olympic-opening-ceremonies kid over some even-keeled, suck-it-up, don't-worry-be-happy kid any day of the goddamn week.

The boy keeps me guessing and he really helps me see that life is fucking insane and it makes sense to get worked up about it, good or bad, from time to time. And, to tell you the truth, I think I'm learning a lot from him. I mean, don't tell anyone, but those opening ceremonies actually caused me to dredge up and squirt out a single, salty tear from the depths of my hard-boiled, emotionally barren hull. Although, I'm probably just going through "the change."

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Hurl-y to Bed, Hurl-y to Rise...

So, I go to pick up the spawnage at camp today, and when I get there, Miss O's counselor, who's like 12 1/2, comes up to me and says, in a very serious tone, "Uh, so after lunch today, when the kids were practicing their skit, well, Miss O sort of... got sick."

I didn't know what the fuck he meant, at first... "got sick"? Then I said, "Wait... she puked?" He nodded his head. Dude, just say she fucking puked.

And wait... why did she puke?!

I looked around, and Miss O was happily frolicking around with her friends, with nary a sign of her chunks having been ralph-ed. I thanked the lad, and then tracked the ragamuff down. Now, trying to get information out of Miss O is like trying to get the weird fungus that's been on my left big toe for the last five years to go away -- you can poke and prod and apply various salves and unguents, but Miss O ain't gonna fucking talk. Neither will the fungus.

What I could glean from her harrumphs, whines and non-answers was that:

1. Her stomach didn't hurt.

B. She was fine after the chucking was upped.

iii. It was less of a puke and more of an exuberant "mini-vom."

Now, the old crabbydad would worry his skinny little ass off, trying to figure out just what pernicious plague had befallen the girl. But for some reason, the new old crabbydad isn't really all that fucking concerned. I mean, I've seen her mini-vom before and lemme tell you, she's a fucking blo-fessional. Sometimes it happens when she's bending over the arm of the couch reading a book, sometimes it happens when she tries to force out a belch at the dinner table (like the true crabbykid that she is), and sometimes it happens because... well, just because.

I think, eensie-bit by weensie-bit, I'm learning to not ramp up into fucking panic mode every time someone gets a runny nose. Or a runny esophagus. Granted, I'm not throwing the Xanax away just yet -- I still have to stand over the spawnage every night until they move before I can allow myself to go to sleep, but hey... baby steps, right?

So what does this all mean? I have no idea, but I'm pretty sure it means that Miss O's fucking going to camp tomorrow.

Monday, August 04, 2008

Happy Z-Day!

Holy shitstain, Mr. Z's turning 10!


Man, it seems like it was only yesterday that I took that picture of our visit to the exploding prune factory.

His actual birthday is tomorrow, but we had a little shindig over the weekend -- the boy invited his friend Mr. J over for a movie/Wii-marathon/sleep-over-aganza on Saturday. I'm telling ya, that's the way to go, my friends. One guest, take 'em to a movie, no Caesarland, no goodie-bags, throw some pizza and cake at 'em, plop 'em in front of the Wii for nine or ten hours, and then let 'em crash. Party done, who needs a ride home?

Of course, the Old Lady outdid herself in the cakery department:


And like the Old Lady, it was sweet, spectacular and moist. (And tasted even better with milk.)

Actually, the Old Lady was having a bit of a bout with tummy-turmoil on Saturday (I promised her I wouldn't write about her shart-scare in bed on Friday night) so I took Mr. Z, Mr. J and Miss O to the movie. We saw Wall-E, which I have to say was the FUCKING SHIT! If you haven't seen the film, go now. STOP READING THIS AND GO! GO ON!!! I was blown away by it, visually, emotionally and fucking execution-ly. I was laughing, crying, farting -- I ran the whole gamut of emotions. Toward the end, when things looked a bit dark for our little robot friend, I looked over at Miss O and she was quietly weeping -- it was the most adorable thing I've ever seen. Luckily, SPOILER ALERT, things worked out and she wiped away the tears and said, "That was the best movie I've ever seen!" And I have to agree -- it was Wall-E-normously entertaining.

Tomorrow, we'll just do a little family birthday with presents thing. We got him a coupla Wii games, the new "Mysterious Benedict Society" book, some Pokemon cards, a Mario t-shirt and a Weird Al CD. The kid loves him some Weird Al. Of course, he has no fucking idea the songs that are being parodied -- he just identifies with the Yankovician genius. Don't we all? Don't we all.

But yeah, 10 fucking years. I've been his dad for a decade. And man, has that boy changed. An adorable but fucking INTENSE baby. And huge. Carrying him around for hours until he fell asleep. How he'd freak out at loud noises. How he always crawled with his ass sticking up in the air -- his knees never touched the ground. Started reading when he was two. Two! That was freaky -- I remember he was taking a shit and he read me a book about ants that he'd never seen before. Then he'd only read reference books -- we own every National Audubon Society book on birds, mammals, fish, reptiles. He was like a reference librarian by age three. Started Montessori and wouldn't hang with any of the kids -- he'd only want to rap with the teachers. Then we moved and he skipped first grade and he was miserable in 2nd grade for awhile. But he bounced back and since then has totally matured every year and now the dude's an amazing little (giant!) man who's going to fucking JR. HIGH in the fall. That boy has come a long-ass way! What an amazing dude he is.

Happy Birthday, Mr. Z! Thanks for letting me be your (crabby)dad!

-----------Addendum-------------

The Old Lady feels that this occasion calls for the annual Mr. Z birthday salute:

Thursday, July 31, 2008

What the Schvitz?!

So, the new health club place we joined is working out pretty well -- there's nobody in the fucking pool like, ever, and the "bubble tub" is doing wonders for my gamy knee, which is bonus. In fact, yesterday, after a particularly swimvigorating workout, I decided to reward myself with a visit to the steam room. I figured a) it would probably be good for my seriously boogity sinuses and 2) it might help loosen up the ol' rigor mortis that I've been battling daily since turning 43.

So, I turn on the little timer thing to 15 minutes -- I figure I don't want to overdo it on my virgin schvitz. Then I open the door and find myself standing in a 5 x 7 cinder block room with a coupla benches. Seriously no frills steam action. But there was no fucking steam. So, I sit down on the bench and wait... allowing my claustrophobia to really ramp the fuck up. Just as I started to feel the walls start closing in, on came the steam.

Now, I'm sure the sheer terror I experienced at that moment was hard-wired into my genetic code in the early 1940s, somewhere between Krakow and Warsaw. I mean, here I was, a skinny Jew, most likely the only one in mid-Michigan (or in the whole fucking state, for that matter), naked as a fucking jaybird in a darkened, cinder block room, as a billowing, hissing white cloud of steam poured out from under the bench. I KNEW they didn't like my kind at the club! I KNEW IT!

But I tried to fight it. I tried to self-talk and say, "Just relax, crabbs -- it's just a plume of nice, healthy steam and not a noxious cloud of cyanide death-vapor. Just breathe it in... that's it, clear out those lungs... that's--wait, why is my chest feeling tighter? What's that smell? Do I smell... almonds?! Why is the room spinning? I've... I've gotta get OUTTA HERE!! WHERE'S THE DOOR? WHERE'S THE GODDAMN DOOR?! HELP! HEEELLLP!!"

I burst out of the gas chamber and into the shower area, where a lone septuagenarian was hosing off. Never had I been so happy to see an age-spotted methuseleh lathering up his leathery nutmegs. I almost hugged the guy, but I figured he would've called out for the commandant, so I toweled off, got dressed and got the fuck outta there.

So, yeah, I don't think I'm gonna take another schvitz for awhile. I'll stick to the fucking "bubble tub." Keep my eye on those fucking "tennis players." And I'll be sure to wear my swim cap at all times, so they don't spot my horns.