On Christmas We Eat Oranges
So, I come from a decently large family (5 kids plus the parents) and at Christmas we have the tree in the corner of the living room, surrounded by presents, with stockings hanging from the mantel in front of the fireplace.
Anyways, my parents never wanted anyone to feel like they were getting the short end of the stick with presents, and while it was pretty even it was usually hard to tell who got how much or whatever. However, they were still worried about someone feeling left out…even when it came to stocking stuffers.
On Christmas while one of my parents was making breakfast, the rest of us would sit around and watch TV and go through our stockings while we waited to open presents.
To make all the stockings seem equally full my parents would drop at the bottom of them a big ass orange, making all the stockings heavy and fill the rest with whatever random stuff they decided to through in there (one special year I got Willenium in my stocking…it was glorious).
Anyways, so on christmas morning everyone would eat big oranges…that were stuffed at the bottom of glorified socks.
When I was younger my babysitter’s favorite show was Perry Mason
For the record, she was a really nice 70 some year old lady.
Anyways, as you may or may not have figured out by now… I was essentially a functioning mentally handicapped child and it was a miracle that I made it to puberty.
Watching Perry Mason everyday I realized that he was a lawyer and he was cool as ice, so I decided that I wanted to be a lawyer when I grew up. However, once I got past that discovery the episodes sort of blended into each other in one big boring blur and I was forced to distract myself through other means. Namely the Perry Mason show hair game.
It was a game that would take place when I would watch Perry Mason with Mrs. O (my babysitter). Whenever a new person would walk onto the screen I would guess what hair color they had. Since this was a black and white show I would assume that white meant blonde hair and black meant any other color ever.
-Hey, Mrs. O! Do you think he has brown hair…or, or blue hair?!
-Maybe green hair hahahaha
- Why don’t you just eat your Hydrox and Vienna sausages and try not to bump your big head into anything?
- hahaha purple hair. Purple.
QUESTIONABLE PARENTING TACTICS:
So, when I was a young chap I was the ever sought after combination of being clumsy and for all intents and purposes a dummy. I would fall, all the time. I once walked head first into a wall, had to get stitches, and then came home and walked head first into the garage door. There is literally still a scar on my forehead.
Like, seriously? How does that happen.
Anyways, most of this took place before I learned that men are tough and men don’t cry. So, everytime I tripped, fell down the stairs, dropped something on myself, or got bit by any number of animals I would bawl my eyes out.
My parents, however, quickly grew hip to my crying game and came up with a solution. Grape Dimetapp. I got grape dimetapp all. the. time. Trip and fall? Dimetapp. Accidentally hit yourself in the head with a basketball? Dimetapp. Once I even got stung right on the bridge of my nose by a wasp (both my eyes swelled shut. It was a special time.) and the only words they could make out in between my tears and what were almost assuredly high pitched shrieks were “Dimetapp! Dimetapp!”
Anyways, no moral, but I totally hate wasps.
I used to have a Star Fox Watch like this. I can tell you the last day I wore it too.
But how, Josh? How could you possibly remember the last day that you wore a watch over a decade ago?
I’ll tell you how, because trauma stamped it in my mind for all of eternity!
So, I got this watch one year when I was a kid as a throw-in birthday present and I wore that thing everywhere. I played nonstop,I was a veritable star fox watchgame prodigy. My fingers becoming a flesh-colored blur as I worked my magic, zooming through rings with ease. There was nothing that could keep me from completing my missions. Unfortunately for me, that included singing the praises of Jesus during a performance at Vacation Bible School.
Vacation Bible School was a week every year that I got to spend with kids I didn’t go to school with doing things that I didn’t like to do. Namely singing and hanging out with kids I didn’t know. So, I did my best to just blend into the crowd and did a pretty admirable job, managing to secure a spot in the back during all songs where I could just be the asocial little bastard that I was and play on my watch.
However, my plan had a fatal flaw that I didn’t discover until it was far too late. You see, at the end of the week there was a performance before our parents and whoever else decided to show up, where we would sing our songs and the older kids would do skits and whatnot. Well, one of our songs was about fishing… and came included with hand gestures. Hand gestures and swaying. And bobbing. These were the things that we were practicing when I was doing my best to be invisible while I cruised through the stars and these were the things that were part of our presentation before our parents.
So, when the fishing number began I’ll give you one guess who wasn’t bobbing or swaying or reeling in fish. Josh and his starfox watch that’s who, too busy zooming through space. Needless to say my mother wasn’t terribly thrilled with the whole thing and I got my wings clipped.
So, I used to be a cub scout (troop 1273 holla).
We met in the basement of one of the local churches and despite all odds, it was hellaciously boring on the reg. I used to dread going to cub scouts, I would have straight up bitch fits, all the good those did me. I probably deserved to be slapped a few times during my complaining about going but there I’d be, every Wednesday night, brown button up shirt on, neckerchief (I wish I was making that up) at the ready.
I remember one fall evening in particular because my husky* ass was munching on a bag of Doritos that was Halloween themed. What made this bag Halloween themed (with the exception of the decor of the bag itself) was that within the bag was a special Dorito-exclusive mini-goosebumps book by R.L. himself.
So, the goosebumps book was about this kid (a real class clown) who got abducted by aliens. The aliens said they would execute him unless the kid made them laugh, so the kid tried and tried to no avail so the aliens said they were gonna kill him. The kid starts bawling and that cracks the aliens up, they are literally rolling on the floor with uproarious laughter. However, in a Pre-Shyamalan Shyamalan-style twist, the aliens start crying because laughing hurts too much. So, they kill the kid dead.
The moral of the story is I think Doritos are kinda overrated.
*Husky Wrangler jeans, that is.
AKA Why I No Longer Eat Honeycomb Cereal
It was sophomore or junior year of college, I was working at the school’s computer lab at the time and was working til close at midnight. I had a routine of coming home from work, grabbing something from the kitchen and chill out for a while on the couch and watch the food network (Ace of Cakes, Good Eats, and Chopped, if you were wondering) until I felt like going to sleep.
At the time I was living with one of my older sisters and due to the fact that I was (am) immensely immature, I rarely if ever went out to buy food for the house so sometimes we would be more stocked on ‘real’ food like salad and pasta and shit that requires cooking, and less stocked on stuff I can munch on at 1 in the morning.
This story was one such occasion when we had very little snackable items. I scoured through the pantry for a while and came across a box of Honeycomb Cereal. I rarely ate cereal and I don’t believe my sister liked Honeycomb so the box had been there for awhile, and by this point I believe you can tell where this story is going but I am gonna keep going anyways.
So, I took the box with me out to the living room and flipped on the television, Good Eats being the only light in the room. I grabbed a handful of cereal and tossed it into my mouth and was a little bummed out by how stale it was. However, I persevered. As I reached into the box a second time a light came on from the staircase and my sister came down, I guess I woke her up. She flipped the lights on in the living room right as I was pulling my hand from the box, only to see it covered in spider webs as I pulled it out. At that point I very quickly realized that there were spiderwebs in my mouth and made my way to the bathroom for some unpleasant vomiting.
It was around that time that I decided that I hate Honeycomb Cereal.
However, I still like it more than Pops.
It also was 11th birthday. I didn’t really get into Seinfeld until I was a lot older than that but even being in the 5th grade I had my finger on the pulse of entertainment enough to know it was a big deal. Enough of a deal that it caused me to permanently remember this birthday.
On this birthday we grilled burgers and hot dogs and had dinner outside on a picnic table in our back yard. I got some weird plastic tennis racket looking things that made a big THUNG noise when you hit them.
I also got a skateboard (along with a wide assortment of embarrassing stories that came with me trying to skateboard). I really really wanted that skateboard. I was really into Green Day at the time. You see 1998 brought with it the end of my 5th grade year and the move from elementary school to middle school, it also brought with it me knowingly listening to Time Of Your Life as I contemplated where my 11 year old life had brought me to that point. You know, real cool, normal stuff. Needless to say I was ecstatic about the skateboard and was furiously trying on an assortment of shin,knee, elbow, and wrist pads (wrist pads? yes, wrist pads) as people began to wander into my house for the coming finale. After it was over most people were more confused and disappointed about the episode than they were psyched about the skateboard, like I was (It had a dragon on the bottom, btw). It was also by that point too dark to take it out for a …spin? ride? I dunno, all I remember was that 11 year old me thought one thing that night
Fuck you Jerry Seinfeld, I wanted to ride my skateboard.
AKA Tragedy Strikes the Batmen Meeting
My Grandmother on my mom’s side (horrendous person) used to have a beach house in Delaware (Hi, We’re in Delaware…) and was the destination of many a family vacation.
Short Tangent: We used to have this gigantic bright yellow van, essentially a small school bus, that midway through the drive back from grandma’s broke it’s sliding door while on the highway. This resulted in having to keep the door pulled shut with bungee cords and many a red face within the van.
Anyhoo, we were at grandma’s one year and took a trip to one of the beaches. Rehobath I think. Now, believe it or not I was a bit of a nerd in my younger years and brought with me to the beach my collection of Batman action figures. No Robins. No Nightwings. Just Batmans (Batmen?). All varieties, orange and black camo Batman, Snow gear Batman, Yellow Glow In The Dark Batman, the works.
So, once we got to the beach, instead of playing in the water or making a sandcastle like a normal kid I promptly got to work on making a Sand Bat Cave. Which, upon completion, was the setting of the 1st Annual Meeting of the Batmen. However, this meeting was cut short by super villainry (aka my parents wanted me to come get a sandwich). So, I ran to where we set up and chowed down. Leaving the Batmen unprotected from the ocean. When I returned to where the Batcave used to be all that remained was dark, wet sand. Ensuing searches of the ocean proved fruitless.
Tears. Were. Shed.
AKA The Worst Sandwich I Ever Ate
Any of you goons ever see that episode of Full House where Michelle is cooking food and ends up making some kinda nasty fish and cookie ice cream concoction? She serves it to one of the adult males on the show, who then teach her the valuable lesson of “Just cause two things are great doesn’t mean that they are great together”.
Anyways, apparently the message of that episode didn’t quite stick with Young Josh.
It was the day of a hot air balloon festival and my family and I were going to go see the balloons take off and then drive to where they were landing. I was… 4th gradish at the time (based on my memory of reading an Animorph book in the car) and was being a real bitch about what I was gonna have for lunch. So, my mother left it up to me to pack my own lunch… I had 2 favorite kinds of sandwiches at the time, turkey with Miracle Whip (and I will NOT tone down) and PB&J’s (obviously). Well, finally getting the green light to prepare my own feast I went to work on what would surely be my masterpiece.
Of course, what seems like a masterpiece to a 4th grader can also appear to be a borderline Health Code violation to most people. My masterpiece, in this case ended up being the latter. A double decker sandwich designed as follows: bread, peanut butter, jelly, bread, turkey, miracle whip, bread.
I determined after one bite that I had made a big mistake in my calculations and learned an important rule: When presented with the option of having your mother make you lunch, take it.
When I younger my first album was Black Street’s Another Level (fuck yeah it was, deal with it) anyways I would sit, with pencil and notebook in hand rewinding and playing the tape as I furiously scribbled down the lyrics. This was before the wide popularity of the internet, mind you. I think we had like a dial-up american online thing that I didn’t know how to use. Anyways, I’d have this notebook filled with Black Street lyrics (and the lyrics of my next album - Puff Daddy and the Family - No Way Out, natch). Anyways, the real mystery behind all this is why? Why was I spending so much time figuring out just what Queen Pen was rapping about on No Diggity?
Honestly, I don’t know. I don’t know the reasoning, but I know I had a compulsion to do it. There’s no moral to this story.