Saturday, February 28, 2009

Win A Weekend With June

I did some deep down and dirty house cleaning today. I had to. I have the one and only June staying at my house next weekend. Do you have any idea what kind of pressure that is. I read her blog. She cleans her house every day, sometimes twice a day. Of course that's because my sweet little cousins tear apart her house like it's a Chuck E Cheese. But, she does it.

Sometimes I tend to look to far into things or expect too much out of situations. I thought that when I entered the "Win A Weekend With June" sweepstakes that I was going somewhere, not June coming here. I never did see the results or come to think of it, I never saw a blog about it. She sent me an e-mail, I entered. Then she e-mailed me again later to say that I had won. As I read it, I was fist pumping and screaming out a couple "Woo Hooos".

Anyways, I am really looking forward to her coming back to her old stomping grounds. I made sure not to fill the weekend with too many activities. Who am I kidding? I have everything planned down to the minute. It goes something like this...

8PM - 9PM pick up from airport
9PM-12AM drink alcohol

12AM - 2AM drink more, reminisce and joke telling, possibly vomit
2AM - 7 AM sleep
7AM - 8AM clean up mess from night before
8AM - 10AM try to get mysterious stain out of living room carpet
10AM - 11AM buy more alcohol
11AM - 2PM drink a liquid lunch
2PM - 4PM take a nap
4PM - 10PM enjoy family party (drink)
10PM - 12AM drink more, reminisce and joke telling, possibly vomit again

12AM - 6AM sleep
6AM - 7AM sleep some more after taking a pee
7AM - 9AM get food get showered and ready for church
9AM - 10AM church
10AM - 11AM go visit dad
11AM - 1PM nap
1PM - 3PM visit with family
3PM - 4PM head back to airport dehydrated and with a headache

Does that sound like a relaxing weekend or what?? I'll bet she can't wait. I'll tell her to pack her spare liver and a hangover remedy. Because she is my cousin, I will let her borrow the "good" sleeping bag to sleep in the garage. It gets mighty cold out there. I'm just kidding. I couldn't be that mean. I am shocked at you people. I'm going to let her sleep in the crawl space. I'm not a heartless guy.

No matter what we do, I can guarantee we will have a great weekend. And I can also guarantee you will hear about it.

Friday, February 27, 2009

A Very Good Night

I had the best of intentions when I decided to take a break last night. I had told myself that I wasn't going to write a blog or story or whatever the heck you call them. I had been pushing it pretty hard lately and I was going to bed. A rest was very much needed. I deserved the rest. I wanted the rest.

Hold on, I've got to run to the garage and get a beer.

OK, I'm good now.

Well, it turns out that the ability to only get four hours of sleep a night and be fine,doesn't run in the family. My lovely cousin Cris, June Cleaver After A Six-Pack, can stay up for three days straight, only needing a piece of bread and 6 bottles of wine. I don't get it. She is super human, an awesome mom and a great writer. It kind of pisses me off. I was pacing her since last Saturday. We were getting right around 4 hours of sleep a night, every night. Every thing was cool.

Right about Wednesday, I began to dislike my alarm clock.. I was waking up delirious, talking to the darn thing like a person. Maybe not a person, what's lower than what a person would walk on. I would say stuff like, "Who are you looking at??!! Oh, just shut up, I hear you!! What, you think I can't see you up on top of that chest??? I bought you! I gave you freedom from that horrible box. Freedom from that little silicone pack and stale Chinese air. Just knock it off!!" By then I was awake. I guess it still works fine.

This all happened in a matter of days. I was dreaming of sleeping at work. Not something you want to do when your 20 feet off the ground on a ladder. I was daydreaming while daydreaming. It started to seem questionable that I should go on like that. I had to stop. And last night was the night.


Hold on, I need another beer.

I'm back. Either I am a fast drinker or slow typist. I'm going with both.

Back to the story.

Except, right before I was going to bed, I called freaking wonder woman. She was all giddy and crap. Talking a hundred miles a minute about the podcast thing. Soon enough it wore off on me and I was talking a hundred miles a minute. We laughed, we cried, it was 1 AM. Crap. I did it again. But this time I didn't even get to write. I was very upset with myself. But, those conversations with her are that good! We have such a good time. You simply cannot call it wasted time. Stupid moronically funny, not wasted.

Today I woke up so pissed at the alarm clock that I would not even talk to it. That's when you know your mad, when to "stop" talking to inanimate objects. I didn't even acknowledge the bastard. I got up, turned "it" off, and got ready for work. The guys at work were impressed with the new language they thought I learned. They thought I was showing off. I just couldn't form words. I was thankful I didn't get pulled over, I would have never passed a field sobriety test. I was too tired. I was beyond tired, I was trierered.

Today I did what any worn out man would do. I worked all day, picked up my daughter from kindergarten, helped with dinner, shipped my wife and daughter off to Disney Playhouse Live, took care of the boy, put him in bed, started drinking and here I am. I am going to drink one more beer (this one is empty) and wait for the girls to get home. Then you can bet your sweet bippy, I am going to bed.

So I say to you, "Good Night".

P.S. I thought I had some great stories to tell you from the past few days, but I'm pretty sure I was hallucinating.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Keep The Junk Coming

Has anyone else noticed a decline in junk mail? I sure have. I used to get all kinds of crap everyday. Now I get very few items, and most are bills. Every once in a while now, I will get nothing. What the heck?? I don't have time to check an empty mailbox!! I have a blog to write and....... well, I just don't like it. I need those cardboard credit cards for the kids. How is Kylie going to fake shop without a barrage of cardboard credit cards?? How do I know if I've been approved for the Super Saver Diamond Platinum Gold Reward Point Low APR Free Gift credit card, unless they tell me? Ummmm..... hellooooo.

I used to hate junk mail. Despised it. Thought of it merely as a waste of paper and resources. Can you imagine how much time and effort is spent on junk mail. It ticked me off. Until I met my buddy Gail. Now, I sign up for all I can.

You see, Gail, like my Uncle Don, retired from the post office. (Can you imagine how many miles they walked??) And I spent most of last winter remodeling the inside of her house. One day I was griping about junk mail when she pointed out, that's how the Post Office makes a hefty chunk of their budget. I never thought of it that way. It's like carpooling for letters. It just makes more sense that six letters pay the mailman to walk up my stairs to the mailbox than one. I get it. Didn't before, but I do now. He still has to walk my street whether he 10 letters or a hundred.

So, with the decline in junk mail, I imagine prices are going to go up soon again. How can we stop it? Get more junk mail. If you see a company offering some info, get it. Get all the junk mail you can, and recycle it. Shoot, I get AARP stuff at 36! I will probably never cancel it. I am going to save all my AARP info until I need it. They are earning my business one piece of junk mail at a time.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


I have two kids. The boy is 18 months old. The girl is 5 1/2 years old. She is a kindergartner at the same catholic school that I went to. I am very proud of that fact. I wanted her knuckles smacked within the same hallowed halls that I got mine smacked. I wanted her to wear her chewing gum on her nose inside the same four walls that I did. I am going to cheer her on as she copies pages out of the bible....

Holy crap! I got in allot of trouble in school!

I remember the smell of the chalkboard. My teacher had caught me doing something cool I'm sure, and made me stand up at the board with my nose inside a small circle she had written on the board. Not just any circle, she would make you come up to the board, stand in front of it, then she would draw the circle just high enough so would have to go on your tip toes. Cruel, maybe. But, I didn't screw with her anymore! I had to wait until next year to mess with another teacher. Spare the rod, spoil the child.

That is why, when my boy turns two, I am going to start some random beatings for all the crap he is going to put me through. I already have a bar of soap picked out to shove in his mouth. Maybe some of the gibberish that I enjoy hearing so much is actually him cussing me out. He could be pissed that I put all his cars away every night. He might even be mispronouncing Spongebob swear word and I don't even know it. Just in case, he's grounded.

So back to my daughter and my old grade school alma mater. It's fairly the same as it was when I went there. The main difference is less kids. Enrollment was high when I went there. I even believe there was a waiting list for some grades. Unfortunately, there are less kids. Less kids means less money. So the parents came up with different ideas to raise money to keep tuition down. The major one is bingo. And when I say major, I mean major. Huge. Enormous even.

They designate what nights each grade is responsible for. You go and volunteer, it's fun and keeps some money in your pocket. I just never understood how serious people get about there bingo. I was never exposed to it.

I am lucky to have all my fingers and toes and arms and legs and let's face it, I am glad to be alive.

Let me make this clear, I am not making fun of, nor, picking on any person that enjoys, plays, eats, drinks, sleeps, or whatever bingo. So please do not stalk me or speak ill of me. All I am saying is HOLY CRAP!! There is a whole world that I didn't know existed there and I volunteered last night. Bingo Tuesday. Which this week was on Fat Tuesday. However, not to be confused with Mardi Gras. Mardi Gras is a party, this is serious stuff.

At my parish, we have the separate all purpose building. It has the basketball court, stage, reception hall all in one big room with some other smaller rooms attached. It's a nice facility. For bingo, they make the gym, the smokers room, and a smaller hall, the non smoking room. Nothing like packing a couple hundred or more smokers in a room the size of a basketball court for 5 hours. I think I picked up some kind of respiratory disease in there. That's coming from a recent non-smoker. I was waiting for the fire department to show up and put them all out. If your a smoker, don't get your panties in a bunch. I'm just saying, go smoke in a phone booth for 5 hours, you'll see.

Fighting against the sneers of the crowd, I took some pictures to show this mammoth weekly event.

Smoking room

Non-smoking room

I really don't see a difference. But seriously, look at all those people out on a cold winter Tuesday night. Almost all seats are permanently reserved. That means they come every week! They have a seating chart!! It's just incredible and very cool. That's allot of support for a little catholic school.

I say "bingo on" my friends, "bingo on."

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

What's So Funny About Men In Coats?

This is an older video, but it's a goodie. I crack up every time I see it.

If you have seen it before.... Enjoy.

If you have never seen it before.... Enjoy.

I and Me and We

There is an I in "TEAM". You may not see it. You may not hear it. But according to my cousin, that's how you spell it. It seems that June wants to do a “June and Cousin Steve” podcast. She said that “we” should set it up. Now, let me tell about my techno challenged cousin. The “we” means “me”. And if I want to do it, I will have to get it done.

Don’t get me wrong, I love her. She is brilliant in my eyes. I am a very lucky cousin. But lurking behind those innocent eyes is pure trickery. It’s like when my sister would pinch me and then yell “Mom Help!!” right before I punched her, so my mom would catch me doing it. All I’m saying is that when we to school, I carried both backpacks, while she skipped.

I am pretty sure that my wife, lovely wonderful light of my life wife, is going to hit me in the head with a frying pan as soon as she gets wind of this new adventure. She has been supportive of the “blog thing” so far, but I will mention that when she walks by, she gives me a look. And then I say “Leave me the hell alone”. Of coarse this is after she is gone and I mumble it so she can’t hear me.

Last week I used to have some free time, then, my cousin made me, I mean, I started a blog. Did I mention I have a full time job and a wife and two wee ones?? Did I mention that job does not allow me to be on the computer?? I only get a couple of hours in the night. When in the bloody heck am I going to get time for a “FAKE RADIO SHOW”!! June said she is going to make me wear an outfit for it. I told her “Nobody can see us”. She said ”Just put it on Pansy”.

So now I figure sometime soon I will be hiding in some corner of my basement, wearing a Leprechaun outfit 2 sizes too small, taping a podcast.

When “I” can set it up.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Sunday Nights

Sunday nights around my house are probably the same as yours. Get ready for the week. I try to scramble to get crap I should have leisurely done during the weekend, done in thirty seven minutes. But last night, you see……. was Oscar Night. I don’t know if I care about the show anymore, too much ego stroking for me. I believe I remember it differently as a kid, seemed to have so much class and elegance. Now it is a program that just my wonderful wife watches.

During the show, I walked over to pick up the remote and she gave me the look that said “Go ahead, change that channel. I dare you. Do it and I will rip off both of your arms and beat your stupid little head with them.” Or at least, that's what I thought she meant. So I said.. “I was just checking to see of it had the right batteries in it…gosh.” Total lie. Then I went and baked her a cake. Not really.

Number one rule in my house, keep momma happy, we all will be happy.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Get Down From There!

My mom always said I was a climber. I would climb everything. As a baby I climbed on the furniture, climbed in and out of the crib. I would even climb up my dad. One time, as told to me, I climbed up the front living room windows, pure buck naked. Mom said, it was funny, cute and scary. All at the same time. I was 2. For the longest time I thought my name was "GET DOWN FROM THERE"!!

As I got older I did what any boy would do, I kept climbing. On top of the house, up a tree. Another time my dad had to go get a ladder from the neighbors to help me out of a tree that I couldn't get down from. I only cared about going up. Down was just a circumstance.

Well, now I am a carpenter. And as all young carpenters should, I spent my younger years framing houses. Big houses. Tall, huge, high up, wonderful houses. My first year I got to work on a 14,000 square foot house. Talk about HUGE! The guest quarters are bigger than my house I am raising my children in. Every little chance I got, I would climb to the top and look around. It was awesome.

I hope that I have established that I am indeed a climber. Or at least that I want to climb stuff. Here comes my problem. We are getting a new ceiling at church. The ceiling was very old and had been painted before. But now is falling apart. It's a cathedral type ceiling, with wonderful large wooden beams and the ceiling is made up of patterned tiles. Kind of like drop ceiling tiles without the grid, for sound. Anyways. To get up to the peak of the ceiling and all points in between, they are using scaffolding. To put it bluntly, our church looks like a huge jungle gym. Like, the best best jungle gym ever made. I cannot focus on a homily with a contraption like that looming over my head!!

For the past few weeks I have no idea what the readings, or gospel, or whatever is about. All I see is the "jungle gym". At first I thought, "Oh cool their fixing the ceiling, sure needed it". That lasted for about five minutes. Every time I leave church without climbing and frolicking on that behemoth of a structure, a small tear runs down my face. Not really, BUT JEEZ!!!

I even want my son to appreciate it. My wife gave me the "What the hell do you think your doing?!!!" look last week. Like there is something wrong with holding your 18 month old son up so he can hang on one of the cross members. I never thought of the flip side of that. I just wanted him to want to climb like every other boy around. Well, he does want. And he does do. And his name also is "GET DOWN FROM THERE!"

I guess one good thing is, hanging in my garage is the ladder that my parents neighbor gave them to get me down, will get him down too. Thanks, Mrs. Rochford.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

June, Don't Pass It On Yet...

So, I start this new blog, back in September..... I don't progress.

I revisit it in December, it goes no further.

I finally sit down and decide that I am now going to do it, and pour a side of me that I don't normally let out in public. I write this post late last night about my dad and nephew. A really big excuse for not blogging. But, to who? I had no readers. Key word there is HAD.

Today I send it to my cousin for approval, since she is the shiznit of blogging. In that e-mail, I wrote:

June, Don't pass it on yet. But here is a look at my blog that I started back in September. I have to do some fancy stuff to make it look good. I just came up with the name last night and switched the old blog to my new address. What do you think. I had to say something about dad, for me. But I tried to keep it quick.

See right after "June" where it says "Don't pass it on yet"? Holy Crap! She wrote a blog about it! I feel like I just emerged out of the shell and she came over and kicked my ass out of the nest.

She said I had nothing to worry about. "It's fine. Just write you Pansie." What that means is... She got an e-mail with a link from me. She doesn't have time to read the body of an e-mail about a funny video or whatever. So she clicks it, got excited, told all.

I freaked out.

I feel like I just got a liquor license for a bar and she told everybody we are having an opening party tonight!

I feel like when your on a first date and the other person starts talking about future plans and weddings and meeting their parents.

I feel like the first time you get on the "super big, rip your face off" roller coaster and it starts to roll out of the station. And your afraid of heights.

I feel like the first time you flew and the planes engines went full throttle on the take off.

I felt... scared.

But, now I'm over it. June called me. Gave me a pep talk. I feel fine.

Sorry the place looks a little drab. I haven't had a chance to fix it up yet. I was not expecting guests.

Thanks for coming. Hope to see you again.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

I was a little busy...

Again, I have been gone for a while. I just came back today and realized that I am a horrible blogger. First I tried a shit load of logins and passwords to get here. Then I just looked around at this space that I haven't seen for a while. That's when I saw it. The blog I did on December 17th, 2008.

I was just going to try and get this blog thing going that night. I had decided that I could do it. I was going to get it done.

I remember that night. The kids were in bed. My wife was asleep also. And I was about to get my troubled nephew to come live with me so I could help him straighten out his life. I was feeling good. My life was headed in a good direction. Remember in "Jerry McGuire" when Tom Cruise is driving down the highway after the "handshake" with Cush's dad and he was singing "Free Fallin". That's how I felt that night. I was going to get it done.

I wrote that little blog feeling good inside. Ready to let the blogging world take me. Then I received a phone call. My dad was being taken to the hospital. He was experiencing a ton of pain in his lower back. I didn't think much of it. After all he has survived a minor stroke the week before with flying colors. They went over his whole body....... right? What could be wrong? What could happen? Just take him there to be safe. I met them at the hospital ER. They had a forty five minute ride. I live only ten minutes away.

I helped dad out of the van and into a wheelchair. I pushed him inside as he joked with all the staff. Dad died twenty eight and one half hours after stepping out of that van. Because of the stroke, they put him on some strong thinners to get rid of another clot. Something happened, and he started to bleed internally. They couldn't stop it. There was nothing they could do. It was very sad. I was very angry.

He had gone in late on the 17th and passed early on the 19th of December.

After a wonderful wake done by my Aunt Barbara's funeral home, we buried dad two days before Christmas.

The day that my dad passed, my sixteen year old nephew came to live with me. HOLY CRAP!! At first it was wonderful. But it didn't take long for him to re-start his shit. I fought a valiant battle. I didn't take his crap or let him get away with shit! (Lot's of fecal matter in this part of the story) The harder he pushed, the harder I pushed back. Right up until he ran away. Then I was done. It took us eight days to find him. I found him in a house and turned him over to the police. He fought the cops then ran right out of the station!! They caught him again nine hours later. Sent him to the Juvenile Detention Center. Two days later they released him to me. I drove him four hundred miles back to where he came from. Little ungrateful shit. (To anyone that may judge me, I could fill up 20 pages with the details from only 5 weeks. I have little children in my house.)

So now, I am recovering from the worst time in my life so far. I hope it will have been the worst in my lifetime. Thing are getting back in order. And I am getting back to being "Happy Steve". Hence, re-starting the blog.

Thanks to all for letting me get that off my chest, I really needed it. I don't want my blog to be a somber place. But sometimes shit happens, and we all need to talk about it. I am going to get it done.