Monday, June 23, 2008

Mix-It-Up Monday - Invasion of the Parental Units

Since I didn't put up a Fragmented Friday post last week, even though I promise Miss ArkanSass one was forthcoming, I figured I'd do my rambling summation of last week today, rather than wait until this Friday.

Zinger just got back from a week in Alaska and spent a good portion of his morning getting caught up on all of his daily online reads. Zinger remarked how much he hated trying to play catch up on everything, although he was quick to point out that reading through CoIM was incredibly easy . . .

My mom and dad were in town for several days since they hadn't seen me since Christmas, and my vacation leave balance was practically nil making any potential trip on my part rushed at best. Plus, they never had gotten a chance to meet many of the Singles outside of Maverick, Biz-Z, and Cap'n Shack-Fu, and were really wanting to see just how accurate my descriptions of everyone were. Last time they were down we tried to do quite a bit of stuff, but this time we mainly just sat around, visited, watched TV, and went out to eat. Not very exciting, perhaps, but it was relaxing.

Saturday evening while mom and dad were relaxing back at the hotel, I went out to the park with PigPen, Cap'n Peanut, and Maverick to throw around the football and Frisbee. It was one of those times when something kind of clicked in my head in terms of the mind/body connection, because I wound up doing a better job catching the football than pretty much any other time I can remember -- up until I kind of jammed my fingers, that is. Three guesses which finger got the brunt of it. That's right, the crooked right middle finger caught the ball head on; I tried to shake off the pain and keep playing, but after a few more catches the paranoia of "Oh, crap, did I screw it up again?" was a bit overwhelming and I had to bow out of any more passing/catching. Didn't feel too bad on Sunday, but is a little stiff and sore today; hopefully that will go away soon.

About the most touristy thing my folks did while they were down is stroll around The Square. We went to Recycled Books, had lunch at Denton County Independent Hamburger Company, had dessert at Beth Marie's Old Fashioned Ice Cream and Soda, wandered into one of the antique stores -- surprisingly my dad's suggestion and not mom's -- and then had to come back a couple of days later so dad could take pictures of the courthouse.

A few weeks back Cap'n Peanut and I were wrestling around and I had to take a very literal breather because I had been around too much cigarette smoke that night and was having trouble getting enough oxygen; early last week I sent him a couple of emails clamoring for a rematch, to which he never responded; in fact, we were around each other quite a bit on Saturday and it never came up. Until, that is, we got back from the park; while PigPen went in to take a shower, Peanut calmly walked into the living room, shoved the coffee table up against the couch*, and called me out. He kicked my butt pretty handily of course, thanks to his crazy gorilla strength, but I almost caught him in a choke . . . man, am I sick of almosts. Next time, Peanut, you're going down!**

I was not the only person with parental visitors this weekend; Li'l Random's parents also decided to come to town for a few days, although none of us ever got to see them. I gather that this is because as soon as his folks arrive, Li'l McEvil chains them to his yard, forcing them to weed and plant and chop down trees and such, until he's worked them near to death and allows them to escape back to Arkansas before their next round of enforced labor. . . although, since I never have seen hide nor hair of his parents even after many, many visits, I have started to suspect that they're just figments of his imagination, and that Li'l Random was not born like a normal man but just sprang randomly from some dark and twisty hole in the ground.

I was hanging out at Li'l Random's place on Thursday afternoon as we were both waiting for our respective parental units to arrive in town when a contractor he had called to inspect the hail damage on his roof rang the doorbell. When The Random One answered the door, the contractor asked "Is Li'l Random home?" I immediately suspected that the contractor's question was due to his assuming that Li'l Random was actually the teenaged son of the house's owner; when Li'l Random told him that he was Li'l Random there was a pause before the contractor blurted out "No way you're old enough to own a house." I cried out "I knew it!" at which point the contractor poked his head around the corner to see me, recognized that I was most assuredly not teenaged, and asked if I was really Li'l Random, assuming that we were trying to prank him. Somehow the joy of mocking Li'l Babyface lost a little bit of its luster with the realization that I was visibly recognizable as being "the old guy"; didn't stop me from doing it, though.

That last bit reminds me; my former college roomie The Old Man recently started up a Facebook page; after I added him as a friend I told him that I was now in the same position he was in in college, surrounded by a social circle who are a few years younger and who insist on rubbing it in my face -- I told him I thought that was probably what they called "karma."

I had been planning on introducing Cap'n Peanut to my folks as "one of those bad influences you always warned me about," but dad went up and introduced himself before I got a chance. However, when Li'l Random met them, I was able to reference the fact that a while back mom had asked if my adopting him as my Li'l Brother meant that he was replacing our old cat that we always referred to as my little brother when I was younger by introducing him thusly: "Mom, Dad, this is Itty Bitty."

Last night my parents capped off their visit by taking my best buds PigPen and Li'l Random out to dinner with us; wish Cap'n Shack-Fu could have been there to make the set complete, but at least they got to meet him when he was deployed to Miamuh. As it was, I had a good time seeing two of my Best Friends interacting with the parental units. I really enjoyed seeing just how often my mom was able to fluster Li'l Random; the best was probably when the waitress was about to take his order, and mom interrupted to ask if he'd found anything on the kiddie menu. Don't think she ever really managed to get PigPen, sadly, but he is pretty hard to fluster, and she was on good behavior and didn't bring her full complement to bear.

*Shoving the coffee table up against the couch is pretty much the universal sign at our place that someone's about to get their ass kicked; 99% of the time it's me.
**Note to self: update the will.