Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Judge not, lest yeast be judged

Any time my family and I embark on a little road trip, as we did this past long weekend, we encounter a period of re-acquainting ourselves with each other. As is the case with most families, our separate lives behave like free radical particles, loosely orbiting a nucleus, otherwise known as our brick rambler.

But this weekend, the chickens came home to roost as we piled into the awesome, sporty and dirty 2003 Kia minivan for a little weekend junket to our time-share condo in Port Townsend, Washington. It's a trip we've made scores of times in the past, but each trip is a bit lighter—no more portable high chairs, strollers, playpens, bibs or baby monitors—than the time before. It's also more contentious each time, as my older daughter struggles mightily with those in her presence. She's at that age where the worst day with a friend beats the best day with a parent. I've been meaning to tell her how much I appreciate her willingness to go out to dinner and watch cable TV. Please remind me to do that.

Since my wife can actually balance 17 plates in the air at once, while I can hold one with two hands at the same time, she utilized the three-hour drive to grade papers and instruct the girls to write thank you notes for their Valentine's Day money from the grandparents and aunt (By the way, when did kids start receiving greenbacks for VDay?).

They whipped out the notes in record time, so Terri decided to give them a once-over. Lauryn, our nine-year-old, simply wrote "Thanks, Love You," three times. Zoe, the fourteen year-old, expressed herself a bit further, writing, "Thanks for the money. I'm going to use it to buy food."

Hmmm. I guess that's a good way to get more money next time. Just play the old hunger card.

We arrived and settled into the small condo outside Port Townsend, and it didn't take the kids long to find the trashiest shows on the telly. The Real Housewives of New Jersey, as much as I hate to admit it, has unseated The Bachelor as the absolute king of swill. I decided, after viewing a mere three, one-hour episodes, that this show was invading our brain synapses like LCD methamphetamine. Then we saw previews for other "Real Housewife" shows from New York and Orange County, and Lauryn wondered out loud if Real Housewives of Montana would contain as much venom.

After dinner, Terri and I decided to leave the girls to the trappings of the television, while we headed into town for a screening of Crazy Heart.

"Hey, Zoe, want to wrestle after they leave?" inquired Lauryn.

"Okay, but I have to pluck my eyebrows first." Zoe has a knack for being both twenty-four and four at the same time.

Terri and I left without further comment.

We arrived at the small movie house in downtown Port Townsend, a Victorian burgh brimming with bohemian charm, if not full-blown hippie. I love the place, and I'm certain there's a Woodstock groupie itching to burst out of me, but some of the traits of the inhabitants of this hamlet are even a little over-the-top for this old, tie-dyed soul.

I must have seen at least four grey-haired "skullets," or bald men with ponytails. In addition as we walked through the concession area of the theater, we noticed a jar at the condiment table that appeared to be Parmesan cheese. Upon further examination, however, we discovered that the stuff was yeast. Yes, yeast. Yeast to sprinkle on your popcorn. Gross. That's like putting wheat on your rice.

At that point, I told myself, "Stop being so judgmental. You preach to your kids about jumping to conclusions regarding people you don't know, and here you are, doing just that."

Then I saw the dog with dreadlocks.

1 comment :

  1. Nice one. My girlfriend laughed out loud at the 'skullets' part.

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