Saturday, December 11, 2004
Weekend at the Haupertonian World HQ
Friday night went pretty good for a bit. I blasted down the Turnpike at a mind boggling 35 mph in order to get the Manor before my parents did. Don't want the security system going off. My neighbors hate it when the automated artillery and cybernetic attack robots start up, they make a hell of a racket. Shortly after I got into the main kitchen and started the evening preparations, the parents arrived and went about the business of unloading all their baggage. Amish Dad also brought down one of the presents for Jacob, a large Brio Train table, that he had been putting together. He is pretty handy with the wood working. This particular project has resulted in a fairly large construct. We unload it from the back of the beater pickup and put it in the garage. Most of the bays are occupied by my tools and half finished projects, so we had to put it towards the back of the bay nearest the manor. I think it might be time to clean out some of the rubbish and debris so that I can move around in the garage. With that out of the way, I zip off to go on a solo S&R mission. When the Tumultuous Twins and I disembark from the SuperSaturn, it is raining. I try to herd them inside as quickly as possible. Dad's truck is still in the driveway and the kids have not made the connection yet. They bumble inside and we make our way from the carport, past the kennels and on to the staging area in the kitchen. Grams and Grams slowly creep in as the kids are taking their coats off. Alexis turns around and spies two familiar faces across the mess hall. Both of the children shriek in delight in unison and blitz the Grandparents. The Grandparents, well, they live for this.
Later that night, Jacob has pretty much monopolized the laps of both granparents. He is not feeling well and consequently, does not eat much. He has a bit of a fever. He is probably fighting off the tail end of the gut-bug that has been hounding him since the beginning of the week. Right now, he just wants to be coddled by the grandparents. They are eager to oblige. The following morning, Jake starts complaining on queue at 0600. I hesitantly tumble out of bed and start to get something to sooth him. Oddly enough, I find that I had left the milk downstairs instead of putting it in the bed-side refrigerator. I clumsily try to don some sweats and crash to the floor multiple times while trying to put the pants on. the 0600 morning hour and balance are two things that I can no longer reconcile. When I finally got across the Master Suite and opened the 12 foot mahogany door, I caught sight of Grandma deftly slipping into the Autonomous Child Region in her light bending ninja night gown. Well, well, well. I think I know who to send into North Korea to take care of that little dictator problem. Just tell Grandma the Mr 'I Got Nukes' has kidnapped her grandson and all hell would break loose! Later reports from our guest room monitoring system let me know that he slept happily for about 90 minutes with the grandparents before waking again. Alexis wakes some time later, but is so excited that the grandparents are in the manor, she does not drink her vitamin enriched milk (doped up with growth hormones, steroids and a copious number of self replicating nanobots). What, does she think she can live on Love alone?! Apparently.
I had a dentist appointment at 0900 on today. At 0800, the dentist's office called and informed my wife that they needed to move up. Well, it takes about 45 minutes to get there and I was not expecting to have to hurry. Sure, they want to see me at 0845 because one of their Dental Hygienists is out today. First off, they don't have appointments at that time. If they did, I certainly would have asked for an earlier appointment! Off I go in a rush. Since I am motivated to get there as quickly as possible, everyone else on the road is entirely dedicated in making sure that I do not. In spite of the hordes of mobile timesuckers and vehicle-enabled cell-phone prattlemongers, I make it to the dentist's with only seconds to spare. Then I wait. After waiting, I wait a bit more. Growing unease rising ... I grab a magazine to pass the time. Hmmm, the Atlantic from NPR. I start to page through as a few people move through the waiting room. The arrive, announce their entrance and then are promptly escorted to the oral torture designated for their case. I start to become engrossed in a particularly interesting article when my persecutor ... err, Hygienist indicates that my maxillofacial dismemberment ... ummm ... cleaning is to begin. It goes as well as can be expected. I brush and floss and use mouthwash. I'm a good little patient. As she rips the gums from my teeth and puts sharp metal things in places that I wish I did not have, my nails slowly sink into the arms of the restraining chair. Fifteen minutes of pain ... and then she is done. All the information she needed to extract from me, I resisted and kept it to myself. Rambo would be proud. Ever see the Marathon Man with Dustin Hoffman? Yeah, well, he had it easy. Is it safe my hairy rear! I talk with the Hygienist and the Main Man. They let me know that I am grinding my teeth down and probably need to get fitted for a night guard. Hmm, me? Stressed? Naw, it must be the coffee. On my way out, I set up an appointment for my six month return visit to the Sanitary White Room of Horrors and an earlier appointment to get a mold done of my teeth. This will be used to create a mouth guard. For some reason, I set up an appointment on the 22nd of this month. This may have been a subconscious way of avoiding the 45 minute session of gagging, but I cannot go to see these people at 0900 on the 22nd since I will be working. I am certainly not interested in taking vacation time to have my mouth filled with some foul substance. I'll have to cancel and then never reschedule.
I rush back to the manor and try to avoid the same people who's antics I got to enjoy on the way to the office. One of them tried to kill me! Out of the blue at 60mph, this van decided that making a right hand turn is what he really wanted to do at the last second. The roads were wet and it took some creative breaking and swerving in order for me to avoid becoming a permanent part of his rear bumper or an adjunct of the undercarriage of the city-van next to me. I spent the next 20 miles behind this van at a blazing 25 mph. Not how I like to spend my weekend. When I did finally get back home, the AmishDad and I spent a bit of time cleaning out the garage so that he could stain the table he built for Jacob. It started out pretty good, but then got a bit frantic as the rain started up again. We had to rush in order to get all the projects that I had started back into the garage bays. Originally, since it was not raining, we set them out on the car port. Shortly after we got everything out, down came the rain. ARgh. We managed though, and there was sufficient space for him to do what he needed. Afterwards, we bitch to each other about LLL Academia/Journalists (both right and left), how the internet and MSM were introducing fabricated facts that could not be proven or confirmed. These shrewd and canny actions required those of us trying to digest the information to inherently distrust everything we were presented. Now, instead of being shown the facts and letting us make up our minds, we are compelled to deconstruct the what has been presented, validate the facts, and then go from there to question of confirm the intent of the story. Where are all the Editors! Where are the Ombudsman, the Customer Advocates. They have been replaced by Fox News, al Jazeera and the Michael Moore school of Propaganda. </rant>
Later that evening, we had dinner and Jacob put on a little show about how he did not want to eat the food he was presented. He wants what he always has, fish sticks and hotdogs. We gave him ham, but that would not do. The mac-n-cheese was not the right shape, the he wouldn't eat that either. Little bugger. We will have to make him go hungry. After dinner, we moved the kids in their restraining seats to one side of the table. I brought in the mixer and I started to get the frosting ready to assemble a gingerbread house. The kids were mesmerized by the mixer. Then, as they saw grandma and I start to assemble the walls and roof, the became keenly aware that we were working with sugar-magic. I let them taste a little of the frosting, the were hooked. Like a good drug dealer, the first taste was free. They will have to wait till the 24th before I let them rip into the house and strip it clean of its delectable treats.