White Lightning Axiom: Redux: High summer

Monday, August 01, 2005


High summer

It was an interesting weekend. More or less. Saturday brought new challenges for the Mrs and I. I, of a matter of nature, skipped mowing the lawn on Friday evening after a week long course in frustration. Exhaustion had wrung every last spec of motivation out of me. I knew I would not be able to mow on Saturday morning and afternoons are just too durned hot. It would have to wait till Sunday ... again. As for Saturday, well, it was supposed to be the routine swim, eat, shop, sleep, clean that we have established. Jake was determined to make sure that it would be all but routine. His first foray into the obstructionist realm was at the swim club. We entered the building in our usual fashion: the Mrs was carrying Alexis while I fumbled through the bags for our bar-scan passes that are used as membership credentials. Jacob saw an opportunity and darted through the front doors. Within 3 seconds, he rounded the first corner, reached up and pulled the fire alarm. Yep, there was a fire alarm at height below 4 feet. Just low enough for him to get his steely grip on. The Mrs and I stood there MORTIFIED as the alarms and klaxons blasted throughout the building. The Desk-Manager was equally stunned. As if this has never happened, they did not have the keys to reset the alarm at the desk and they had to alert the other members that the alarm was a false one. That set the mood for the day. He was rather uncooperative at the swim lessons, would not eat his breakfast at our Saturday outing for Perkins Pancakes, and was grubby-grabby at our shopping forays. The Mrs and I could not wait to get him home and put him down for a nap.

Ahhh, yes, nap time. Now nap time is a bit more complicated these days since we are trying to potty train the kids. Alexis is completely enamored with the idea of wearing underwear instead of diapers and devolves into a crying fit when we try to put her 'Princess Pullups' on instead of her 'Ariel Underwear'. Sigh. Jacob, on the other hand, will walk up to us and say 'Pee-pee Potty' about 1/10 of a second before he lets loose with a torrent of bodily fluids. We spent a few moments making sure that everyone's bladder was empty before we coerced and connived the little tyrants into either OUR bed or their day beds. I had to stay in the room a bit so that they would settle down and nod off. Jacob slept in his bed, Alexis in ours. Since she was wearing only her underwear, I was certain that we would need to change the sheets. After a good half hour, I figured that they were out for the count and went out to the yard to do some work in the dirt and unload some of the plants we bought on our shopping trip. After placing the new vegetation about the yard, I went back inside to fetch some gloves. The Mrs had been vacuuming the stairs and landing when I left the house but when I returned, the house was silent. Well, mostly silent except for the Mrs shouting out Jacob's name. Apparently, he had abandoned his bed and was loose somewhere within the house. The Mrs did not see or hear me when I left due to the noise of the infernal vacuum. I bolt up the stairs to where I heard the last outburst and shouted for the Mrs. She responded that she had found Jacob in OUR bathroom. A hazard in itself ... razors, tweezers, needles (don't ask) and various toxic compounds. As I arrived, a sweet odor greeted me before I even got to the bath-room proper. When I rounded the corner, there was the Mrs with Jacob standing on the floor looking like a puppy that had just chewed up the Missus 500$ shoes. The odor became apparent to me as the Mrs's favorite perfume. I forget the brand, but it is packaged in a giant yellow triangle ... brightly colored to attract children, of course. Jacob had evidentially bathed in it. So my dress wearing, doll playing son likes women's perfume too. Hmmm. It seems to me that the Mrs was more confounded than myself. Back to bed with the little crossdresser!

After the Mrs and I were certain that Jacob would not attempt a second curtain-call on his performance, I returned to digging holes in the yard and she to her own chores. I began planting a couple of hibiscus in the front yard when I noticed that my neighbor Sharon (sprained ankle) was on her front porch with her youngest daughter (Jamie) and her Ex-Son-In-Law (Sheldon). I figure that since she likes the veggies I grow I would give her a tub of tomatoes. Her husband had just got his OTHER kidney out and I knew that she was probably under a little stress. A kindly act would as such would go a long way towards boosting her morale. As I walk up to her front porch, basket in hand, I wave and greet the crowd. They are all sipping from large wine glasses and I could smell from the tell-tale 'rock-fruit' aroma that they were imbibing of a heavy wine. I deduced that it was Shiraz when made mention of it and then made the supposition that it was probably an Australian wine since it was of such a robust color. Since the most popular shiraz from those vintners was Yellow tail (packaging counts, but I prefer Banrock Station or Penfolds), I guessed that. The trio was speechless for a few moments and then insisted that I have a glass with them. Several glasses later, the kids have woken up from their nap and they come on over to figure out what has happened to daddy. The Mrs informs me that Alexis held back the storm waters and the bed is dry. That required a toast! Or two. Sharon's son Lee and his new wife arrived and sat down with us. Soon enough, we had gone through several bottles and the Mrs dragged the kids back inside so they could watch some Bug Story while we monitored them over the phone system. The Mrs hung out with us as Sheldon, Jamie and myself slowly slid into the darkened realm of Shiraz inebriation. They departed for a dinner leaving Marvin (missing his 2 kidneys) behind and I ambled back home to make myself some dinner. Three NY Strip steaks on the grill, sizzling away. Mmmm. Out of a combination of gratitude and pity, I saved one of the slabs of well marbled beef and brought it over for Marvin since I assumed that the rest of his family was not going to be returning with his dinner any time soon. It was an interesting day whose remains were quite obviously felt the next day.

Ahhh, Sunday came in like a mad bull through a Japanese tea ceremony. All brash-n-crash, no mercy or respite. I tried to power through my body rejecting the toxins I had spent all night pouring into myself. The kids voices seemed all that more shrill and startling loud. Alexis, being an assertive young lady, DEMANDED that we allow her to wear underwear after finishing her morning pee. Ok, fine, just ask in a softer voice not set at level 11 ... please. Get the lawn mowed while the remaining morning is still cool. This late in the morning, it is all but cool. Church always gobbles up a big chunk of the morning hours. So I dive into the task and find myself quickly covered with sweat. This gives the dry grass clippings the adhesive properties of molecular covalent glue and they quickly carpet my legs like hair on a French prostitute. I could not finish up quicker if I wanted to. I wrap up the lawn-care and raise the Mrs on the Short-Wave to let her know that it would be a good time to head back to the Manor.

You see, I have the Company Picnic to attend today. Annual thing. I gotta go. I've been with the company for 8+ years now. The only people there longer then myself is the Boss/Founder, his wife (VP of Dev) and CHH who joined about 6 months before I did. Staying with a tech company, a consulting firm even, for more than 4-5 years is a lifetime these days. I guess that makes CHH and myself some sort physical manifestation of holy icons. The event is hot and sticky. Not as bad as previous years, though. The kids are MUCH more manageable this year. They mostly gravitate around the ice bins and chips. Things ARE getting easier with them. And finally, the big event. Alexis is still in her underwear and she comes up to me and tells me that she needs to go. Ok, ok ... ok. The Family tank is about 100 meters away. The potty is in there. I frog-march her up the road to the Tank and quickly seat her. The Mrs is hot on our tail with Jacob in tow. Every second we waste is an eternity of urges to just let go. Her will is strong, and we make it. Tinkle AHOY! But wait, she insists that she is not finished. But hon, you did already go, right? No, just wait. She needs to do more than tinkle! YES! Disaster avoided. Alas, she is dehydrated and this will not pass easily. After a bit, Jacob becomes agitated and much too much for the Mrs to handle. She pawns him off on me while she gives moral support to my littlest angel. When the ladies finally return, the Mrs informs me that 'Operation Clean Princess' was a success. It seems that after sweating bullets and an apparent simulation of giving birth, Alexis managed to void herself and walk away with a blue ribbon production in the potty. Its a great day for her till she stumbles later on in the evening and skins both knees. Take the good with the bad hon, and remember the good.


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