One of the first things Jack claims to have fallen for was my vastly original record/tape/CD collection. I’ve got everything from Japanese plink-plonk to African hum-hum to Library of Congress yee-haw, as well as a big chunk of stuff so suicidal-nerd-punk that he just laughs at it. The names just kill him, never mind the music. So last night we were driving to pick up a pizza at Giovanni’s (they don’t deliver, we don’t care) and I popped in a CD. Jack listened to it for a moment or two and then said, “Who’s this, The Velvet Steamirons?” “Why, yes!” I replied, “It is The Velvet Steamirons.” (It was actually Coldplay’s first, which is mildly depressive but also relaxingly babylike.) We got our pizza and stopped in the liquor store so Jackson could peruse the beer case and I could browse the porn (man, I thought we as a nation were over Freakishly Big Tits, but I guess I’m out of touch, and as punishment now I’ll get seventy hits from jerkoffs looking for Freakishly Big Tits. THERE ARE NO TITS HERE. GO AWAY. And take the weirdos looking for pictures of forced diapering with you). We got back in the car and, as usual, Jack just wouldn’t let it go. “You can’t fool me,” he said, “this isn’t The Velvet Steamirons, it’s the Pumpernickel Pimple People.” I was trying to make a U-turn at this point and just about ran into a light pole.
The good news is that Sunday night is now Pizza Night, and Jackson likes it with ham and mushroom but he dinks off the pineapple. I’m like, “You liked pineapple at lunch, what’s wrong with it now that it’s warm and has oregano on it?” And I get a look that says, “Pineapple on a pizza? Where do you think we are, California?”
Well, out of all the people who tromp through here on a daily basis, only one person responded with the old New Yorker with the Woody Allen story I’m looking for. I would have thought that all of you were miserly recluses living in cramped apartments filled with potentially crushing piles of old magazines and newspapers. I guess there are only two of us, though, and the rest of you throw out your periodicals in a timely manner. I hope you recycle, and that you get some small satisfaction for that, because you’re not getting a slightly worn VHS tape of Hannah and Her Sisters.
However, because I’m not really that mad at you, I’ll tell you about the interesting e-mail I got this morning from Jack’s old boss in L.A., Dave. Dave and his partner, Linda, are compulsive about buying crumbly old houses, fixing them up, living in them for about two minutes, and then selling them fully furnished for whopping amounts of money. (Dave’s a builder, Linda’s an architect/designer, it’s a match made in heaven.) But this last house they bought and finished and are living in has a strange vibe to it. Dave and Linda have both separately reported seeing a “glowing green vapor,” and Dave is not the type to see vapors of any sort. OooOooOooo! Apparently the former resident died in the house, and Linda had a mystically-inclined friend over who took one step inside and said, “Someone’s still here.” OooOooOooo! So this morning, knowing that I secretly love this sort of thing, Dave e-mailed me a picture he took of the kitchen before they fixed it up. He says that if you stare at it long enough you can actually see something vaporous appear by the table, like one of those 3-D pictures at the mall, you just soften your focus and then the image pops out. OooOooOooo!
Jack talking on the phone to his stepmom:
Stepmom: “How are you?”
Jack: “Busier than a one-legged man at an ass-kicking contest.”
I think it’s fair to say that Jack is desperate to get us into a house as soon as possible (in other words, Our Little Tax Deduction isn’t pulling his weight). So he found us a mortgage/real estate person whose office is in the back of a mortuary. The door’s real wide, presumably so a coffin can fit through, and there are often people crying out front. It seems like an extreme way to get new real estate listings, but when it comes to house hunting in a town like this, I think you really need someone with that kind of competitive edge.
I just ate a little glob of oatmeal that I found in a fold in Jackson’s neck.
My father, who doesn’t think I should curse on my blog, constantly sends me e-mail jokes. This one actually made me laugh. It contains NO SWEAR WORDS.
An elderly Irishman lay dying in his bed. While suffering the agonies of impending death, he suddenly smelled the aroma of his favorite chocolate chip cookies wafting up the stairs. He gathered his remaining strength, and lifted himself from the bed. Leaning against the wall, he slowly made his way out of the bedroom, and with even greater effort, gripping the railing with both hands, he crawled downstairs. With labored breath, he leaned against the door frame, gazing into the kitchen. Were it not for death’s agony, he would have thought himself already in heaven, for there, spread out upon waxed paper on the kitchen table were literally hundreds of his favorite chocolate chip cookies. Was it heaven? Or was it one final act of heroic love from his devoted Irish wife of sixty years, seeing to it that he left this world a happy man? Mustering one great final effort, he threw himself toward the table, landing on his knees in a rumpled posture. His parched lips parted, the wondrous taste of the cookie was already in his mouth, seemingly bringing him back to life. The aged and withered hand trembled on its way to a cookie at the edge of the table, when it was suddenly smacked with a spatula by his wife . . .
“Back off!” she said, “They’re for the funeral.”
Every time I walk into a room and forget what I came in for, I say, “SO . . .”. Unfortunately, this doesn’t usually prompt my short-term memory, but it does compel me to become Joel Gray in Cabaret and adopt a sort of German-Australian accent — ” . . . life iz disappointing? Fagget it. In here, life iz beautiful. Zhe goirls . . . are beautiful. Even ze orgestraaa iz beautiful.” Then I have to do the trombone “BRRAAAAPP yat da, dat da da da, dah daahh.” Someday Jackson will tell me what he thinks of my little performance. I will try not to let it deter me from also performing large sections of Young Frankenstein, especially the Madeleine Kahn parts. Oh, for a fuzzy boa and a fright wig. To the lumberyard!
Robin Williams now seems like a second-rate Eddie Izzard.