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Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Come Together

Thank you to Marybeth for inspiring the name of this post.

I am completely aware that my writing has been shit lately. I apologize for any of you who thought you were coming here to read some good shit and didn't. I've been rushed a lot more lately than usual, summer beginning, the road trip, the in-laws visiting, the pet death, the baby bunny arriving, my birthday and Father's Day all have been quite distracting. Next week isn't looking so great either as I will officially have a teenager. That's right folks, Sunday, Lane 1 will be 13-years-old. If you are new here, welcome to Home Fires. Please checkout my post from yesterday, the following is part two.

At dinner, the owner of the restaurant was flirting with Katey big time. He gave her the "any friend of Lois" treatment. He and his staff did treat us like royalty, which is just how they do things there. You can't take the last bite or sip of anything without having someone standing beside you offering you more, within three seconds. Of course I like to play the "last bite" game, watching them out of the corner of my eye, slowly put it to my mouth, stop to talk, raise my hand toward my mouth again, then stop and what I get to see is a waiter or bus boy or the owner himself doing a Paula Abdul, two steps forward, two steps back dance, while they await the final bite to be gone. Yes, I am easily amused.

In a very Lane 2 manner, I showed Katey the framed business story I wrote a year ago that they still have hanging on the entryway wall. They also have a newspaper column of mine from a few years ago, hanging by the register. I still smile when I see people stop to read either one. "Hey Katey, look what I can do!" Is pretty much how Lane 2 and I treated the poor woman.

Mr. Lane's dad insisted on buying dinner for all of us. Can you say bonus?

After dinner Katey and I took off in my car, the old man, his dad and the kids were in Mr. Lane's truck. When we got back to the house, we got some chitchat time while the kids and guys watched TV. I showed her the pictures from our little road trip, which I still plan on posting. Because it was already late, the guys thought Katey was spending the night. They just went to bed thinking they would see her in the morning. I didn't say anything at the time but I thought, "Damn that was rude of them to just go to bed and not say good bye to my friend. Bastards." My father in-law curled his ass up on the bottom bunk in Lane 1's room so Katey could sleep on the couch, which was just too cute. Fine bastards they aren't.

It's true that my son has a wood burning picture in his room like Katey said. It was a gift from the man who is illustrating my series of children's books. His father also is an artist and the one who made the picture. Truth is, it's his father's rendition of what I might look like. His son has described me to him as, "a totally hot cat lady". The picture shows cleavage and nude legs. The rest of the body is covered with a leopard who happens to be smiling and is standing in front of "me". So, technically, there is no nudity and I never posed for the picture. It is merely what one man's imagination drummed up. Sorry Dante, I know you were hoping for something a little more exciting.

My visit with Katey was just much too short. But at least she is in the same state and knows how to take country directions. "Katey, make sure you watch the intersection over the hill. And make sure you turn at the first street on your right. I'm not sure what the name of it is because it's not marked but it is the first street you come up to off of that other road that isn't marked. And then make another right after the soybean field." She is smart like that and didn't even get lost.

Sunday just seemed to come much too fast. I dragged my tired old ass out of bed to make breakfast, only to find Mr. Lane had already been up and started cooking. Bonus! After all of the Father's Day hoopla at home, we all got ready to go visit my mom. In a way I was dreading going. As it turned out, I wasn't sad. As we pulled into a parking spot, nieces and nephews popped out of the bushes to wish me a happy birthday. They are really cute kids when they aren't being brats.

We sat around shooting the shit for an hour or so and then my mother said, "I wanted to buy you something and ran out of shopping time."

"That's okay Mom. I don't need anything."

"But I want you to get a nice grill. I know yours isn't the best and it's small and dangerous. You need one of those really big ones with the burners."

"Mom, those are much too expensive and I really don't need one. Just because the ignition switch is out on my grill doesn't mean it's really broken. I cook on it all the time."

"It can be dangerous. What about your husband clicking that thing like crazy and burning all of his arm hair off? See? That's dangerous."

"It's only dangerous to him because he is a jackass. I know how to light it without the switch. Besides, I do most of the cooking on the grill anyhow. You really don't need to get me a new one."

"I know but you deserve a big, nice and shiny one." She handed me a wad of cash. I'm not one to argue with a wad of cash, so I took it graciously and shut my mouth.

Like a good, obedient daughter, it was all sorts of cash & dash. We headed for Mr. Lane's sister's house for a barbeque. Little did we know that her neighborhood friends were going to be there. We hung in our corner of the yard and they hung in their corner. Not very much interaction going on. The food was great but like a good sister in-law that I am, it was all about dine & dash.

My aunt and uncle live a couple of blocks from my sister in-law's house. I told Mr. Lane I wanted to stop by and say hello since we were in their neck of the woods, which is what I told my aunt I would do the next time I am in her town.

Unannounced, we show up. Auntie Shorty and Uncle Giant are surprised but happy to see us. They welcome us in with open arms because they are just cool like that. My aunt offers us something to drink or eat, repeatedly. We tell her to relax. We'd just come from a barbeque and we were in need of nothing. She ignores us and gets sodas for us and bottled water for the kids.

She and my cousin Joey, took off for the kitchen again. As I think, "Doesn't she ever sit still?" she and Joey come back with a fiery paper plate. They began to sing, "Happy birthday to you..." the rest of them chimed in singing. I looked on the plate as saw the cutest thing ever, a Little Debbie Snack Cake with candles in it. The look on Auntie Shorty and Joey's faces were priceless. They are just too friggin' cute for their own good.

I let the kids eat my "birthday cake" as we grownups talked about anything and everything. We talked about all sorts of things and I found out, they read this blog. That really cracked me up. Who knew? Auntie Shorty also let me know that she e-mails my stories to people some times. Joey also sent out a story about Comcast sucking donkey balls to one of his friends who used to work there. How cool is that?

All and all, Friday through Sunday, it was a wonderful weekend. I really wanted to go into detail about Angie telling me about her bald eagle but now that I know her God parents, Auntie Shorty and Uncle Giant, read this here blog, maybe I oughta just let your imaginations run wild with that thought.

Thank you all again for making my birthday so special!