Monday, October 31, 2005

Touched by a Beagle?

I think I’m going to build a shrine to my lucky jar of dog biscuits.

Which of the following statements are true?

A. I won $1,535 on a California Lotto ticket Saturday.
B. I won $2,000 at a charity event I emceed on Saturday.
C. Robin Williams walked in off the street at The Comedy Store in La Jolla at midnight on
Saturday and did an impromptu set for anyone who was there and then he stayed and hung out with the comedians after the show.
D. I will have to wear my watch one hour fast for the next year because I have absolutely no idea how to change the time on it.
E. Daylight Savings Time is stupid.
F. All of the Above.

If you guessed “F” you would be correct.

So I guess there was no Grandma Melba toast curse after all.

I had an amaaaazzzzing weekend.

Now back to the dog biscuit, TV reporter thing that started it all. I did not want to name the TV reporter from Friday but now I have no choice. His last name......... You’re not going to believe this..... is ........... “Luck”.


I ate a dog biscuit given to me by a reporter named “Luck” and won $3,535. I ate a dog biscuit given to me by a reporter named “Luck” and saw Robin Williams perform an impromptu set live and then got to “hang out” with him afterwards. I ate a dog biscuit given to me by a reporter named “Luck” and now I can’t change the time on my f&*^%)g watch.


By the way I donated $1,000 back to the Iris Auxiliary of The San Diego Center for Children, which was the charity I did the event for on Saturday.

Oh I kept $1,000.

I’m not crazy.

Um….Anybody want to buy a watch?

Friday, October 28, 2005

I think I've been cursed by grandmothers!!!

Okay, I’m not a superstitious man but something happened today that makes me think there is definitely strange “Mojo” out there.

In my last post I made a reference to grandmothers confusing dog biscuits with Melba toast. A harmless reference which in hindsight is only marginally funny, unless of course you have a dog… and a grandmother... who comes over to your house and raids the kitchen cabinets looking for Melba Toast.

I can honestly say that I don’t use the words “dog” and “biscuit” in the same sentence very often. Hmmm…. Probably less than four times a year, let’s call it three times.

This morning I was interviewed “live” by a local television news station. Now I don’t personally know the news “reporter” that interviewed me. We have met before at different local events but he is not what I would call a close personal friend.

The first words out of his mouth were, “Hey paisan, How U doin?”

I’m Italian.

I use that phrase all the time. So I’m okay with this, it’s just not what I expected from a news “reporter”.

He then says, “Hey, Calabreeez, you lost a lot of weight, you look good.”

“Um…. Thanks?”

“You know I keep in shape myself. I do my own modified Atkins diet.”

“Hey… that’s great… thanks for sharing.”

“I’ll let you in on a little secret.”

“No really, don’t tell me, I can’t keep a secret.”

“Seriously, it will help you stay in shape. I got this stuff. It’s in my car.”

(What in the hell is going on here? Am I being punked? This is a gag; it has to be a gag.)

“Shouldn’t we do the interview first?”

“Oh we’ve got time. We don’t go live for another 45 minutes.”

We got outside to his car, (royal blue corvette with chrome rims) and he opens the trunk.

“I know this is going to sound weird but I snack on these babies all day.”

“Uhh…those are dog biscuits.”

“Yeah I know, totally organic, no meat byproducts, they taste like peanut butter, try one they’re addictive.”


“Trust me. Just try one.”

At this point I’m thinking, do I throw away a television opportunity or piss off Lassie?

“Boy…they’re a little dry.”

“I know, I think dogs have more saliva than humans so they munch em right down. But they taste great don’t they?”

I am now faced with insulting a local television legend or saying that my next food addiction is going to be dog biscuits.

“Yeah… they’re like “Lays” potato chips.”

“Ha! I know. Bet you can’t eat just one. HA!”

“I could try.”

“I don’t think these babies have any calories. There’s no calories listed on the jar. I’m hooked on these. Plus I think they’re good for your teeth.”

(Come on jump out from wherever you are and tell me I’m on candid camera or something.)

“Here, go ahead have another one.”

“I…uh…have to go to a luncheon…I don’t want to fill up. I might offend the host if I don’t eat.”

“No problem, take this jar with you. I have more at home. I watch late night TV and just snack em right out of the jar.”

There are surreal times in your life when you have to make split second decisions.

Decisions that may change your destiny.

I am now typing this while staring at a jar of organic dog biscuits.

Peanut butter flavored organic dog biscuits.

Oh I did the TV interview.

Because apparently I have no dignity and crave attention.

I did the interview with dog biscuit parts stuck in my teeth.

That’s a flavor you will never forget.

I’m supposed to let him know when I run out of dog biscuits. He’ll “hook me up” with his supplier.

I think I may have been doing doggy drugs from the trunk of a corvette.

Is this what stardom is really like?

I am convinced this is happened because I picked on grandmothers in my last post.

I would like to apologize to all Melba toast eating grandmothers everywhere.

Please… I beg you…lift this curse.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

'Tis the season. I swear, it really is.

The holiday season is upon us.

Actually I think it was upon us at the end of August because that’s when they started selling Halloween candy in the grocery stores.

Next to the day the Girl Scout Cookies come out (Which should be a national holiday) Halloween is my favorite day.

It’s the only time of the year you can actually get your kids to willingly go outside and get some exercise.

I used to send my kids out with king size pillowcases.

Then after they walk door to door for hours begging…

I’d steal their candy.

Um… I mean I would confiscate the dangerous candy.

Because I’m a responsible parent.

I would just take the candy that might have needles or razor blades in them, which in my house were always those delectable little Nestlé’s crunch bars.

And maybe the Three Musketeers Bars.

And Snickers.

And Sweet Tarts. They could be poisonous so I may have taken those as well.

For my kids safety.

That’s what I’d tell them.

It was for their safety.

I don’t understand why they don’t make Halloween National Homeless Peoples Day. Here’s the perfect opportunity for them to get free food.

And they don’t need costumes.

I don’t know who started Halloween. I’ve heard it was the Boston Celtics or the Druids. I think I saw that on the Discovery Channel. It was probably the Egyptians since they already had that whole mummy costume thing going on and if you watch the Discovery Channel you’ll see that they discovered everything, everything except basketball, which was discovered by the Celtics. One of these days they’ll figure out that Stonehenge was the first sports arena.

It wouldn’t surprise me if a woman created Halloween.

I think we all know that at certain times of the month women will kill for candy.

That’s been my personal experience anyway.

The reality is that Halloween was probably created by a fat guy, who was later diagnosed with the first known case of diabetes.

They have different holidays in the Christian world than they do in other religions.

The Muslims just celebrated the opening of the first “Ramada Inn”.

The Jews just celebrated the anniversary of the first album by the band “Sha Na Na”.

I could be wrong.

Christians celebrate holidays like Easter, by eating chocolate rabbits.

This is how they celebrate the death and resurrection of their Lord Jesus Christ.

By biting the heads off chocolate rabbits.

I have my own religion.

I’m a Foodist.

It’s more of a Zen Foodism sort of thing actually.

On Sunday’s, our collection plate comes with mashed potatoes and gravy.


Super sized.

So anyway it’s the holiday season.

Guys trust me on this one.

Start figuring out what you are going to get your woman for Christmas right now.

Do not wait until the last minute and then come home with a hummingbird feeder.

I’ve gotten pretty damn good at picking out a gift for my wife. I didn’t start out that way though. I had to be trained.

For example, I once bought her a trophy, a cup. I had it engraved and everything. I thought it was cool. Unique. Different.

This was not a good idea.

In hindsight, it was just plain stupid.

Never give a woman a trophy.

Unless she’s won something.

But I learned my lesson.

I now know all of her sizes. (By the way guys, always guess sizes on the low side by at least two sizes. Under no circumstance should you ever guess your wife’s size by judging her against the size of a saleswoman. Particularly when sizing the… uh… top.)

Here’s some more advice.

Just in time for the holidays they have come out with the new bankruptcy law, which makes it harder to use bankruptcy to get out of paying your credit cards.

Personally, I’ve always tried to stay away from bankruptcy

‘Cause I’ve heard that it kinda… screws up your credit.

So here’s what I recommend.

Keep not paying your credit cards.

That seems to be working out okay so far.

‘Cause you wouldn’t want to ruin your credit.

They say that this new law will be okay because “after” people get into financial trouble they’ll send them to credit counseling.



Hey! Here’s an idea….


No we’ll teaching the following crap:

If a train is traveling ninety miles an hour carrying four apples, and it’s headed to Chicago which is 300 miles away, and if “X” equals 5.44456 and “Y” equals 8yx, how many dog biscuits will your grandmother eat before she realizes it’s not Melba toast?

I have to stop now before I get political.

Happy Halloween!!

Monday, October 24, 2005

The Rating Game

A young comedian friend of mine who has achieved some level of fame has been lamenting lately about how hard it is to find the “right” woman.

“Tony I’m spending the next year on a quest to find the right girl to settle down with.”

“A quest? Like a Holy Grail kind of thing? Maybe we could get a bunch of us to dress up as knights and go to Pure Platinum and…”

“I’m serious. If women think you’re famous it’s hard to find one who isn’t just after your money.”

“Uh... I’m actually okay with that.”


“A century? You think I’ve been married a century? My life is done? Are you trying to set me up for a “It just "seems" like a hundred years” joke?”

“You know what I mean. You’re old. You’ve already found the right woman. You don’t know what it’s like out there.”

“I’m old? I don’t know what it’s like out there?”

“Seriously, I’m trying to find like a 9.5 or a 9.6, and it’s hard.”

“You rate women on a scale that’s broken down into tenths? What the hell is the difference between a 9.5 and a 9.6?”

“A 9.5 is a 9.6 that doesn’t like camping?”

“Have you ever even been camping?”

“That’s not the point. If I ever wanted to go camping and I’m dating this hot chick and she didn’t want to go camping then that would knock her down a tenth.”

“You’ve been on the road way too long.”

“Well then how do you rate women?”

“I don’t remember. I’m too old. I’ve been married for a century.”

“So if you were single and younger how would you rate women?”

“You didn’t get the sarcasm in my last remark?”

“I got it. So answer the question.”

“Well the first thing that I find attractive about a woman is her mind.”

“You’re not going to help me are you?”

“I am helping, I’m forty eight, the first thing I would need to find out is if she’d “mind” going out with me.”

“Not funny.”

“I know, but it was worth a shot.”

“How would you rate your wife?”

“She’s a 10.”

“You’re wife is a 10?”

“Yep, she’s a perfect 10.”

“What makes you think your wife’s a perfect 10?”

“She reads my blog.”


"Never mind, you'll find out later."

“Actually she’s a 9.5 that thinks camping is staying at the Bellagio with my sorry ass. That makes her a perfect 10. Any woman that would put up with me for over thirty years is a perfect 10. Hell she’s an 11.”

“You are no help.”

“Look, first of all I’m not stupid enough to publicly announce I’m spending the next year looking for the ideal mate. Secondly SHUT THE HELL UP about your “rating” system. All you need is for the woman of your dreams to find out she was a 9.3.”

“I wouldn’t marry a 9.3”


“A 9.3 is a 9.4 that complains about my snoring.”

“Have you ever considered the possibility that women are rating you?”

“Um… no…not really.”

“And using your rating system how would you rate yourself?”

“I’m a perfect 10.”

“A short Vietnamese comic is a perfect 10?”

“It’s my system.”

“Here’s a little advice. I don’t care if she’s a 1.1 with a glass eye and a clubfoot or a 9.9 Playboy Playmate of the Year. If you fall in love you fall in love. You can’t use a system to find the girl of your dreams. There’s no system to love. Love makes you stupid. Love makes you dream. Love makes you rich and poor at the same time. Love makes you wake up feeling alive and in an instant kicks you in the nuts. You can’t plan it, buy it or build it. It just is. So stop trying so damn hard and just let it happen.”

“Dude, I would never go out with a girl that had a club foot.”

“Not even if she liked camping?”

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Call me Ishmael.

Who the hell names their kid Ishmael?

No wonder the kid ran off to sea.

Half the people reading this have no idea where that came from.

The other half has no idea where I’m going with this.

Well I’ll tell you.

There’s an expression, “Our children are our future.”

I’m just a tad worried.

Yesterday my twenty two year old son bought fifty orders of french-fries from McDonalds.

He said he wanted to see if he could win a prize.

He won twenty-six more orders of french-fries.

So much for the “Intelligent Design” theory.

Then I remembered my oldest son spending over a thousand dollars at Sea World cracking open oysters to get pearls.

He said it made him feel like a pirate looking for treasure.

So much for a “private education”.

Which reminded me of when they were little, and I’d take them to 7-11 with me. While they were getting Slurpees, I was buying California Lottery Scratchers.

They would watch me scratch and swear, scratch and swear, scratch and swear…..

At least they ended up with some fries and some pearls.

All I got was grey shavings from Lottery Scratchers all over the kitchen counter.

It might have been different if I hadn’t lost my lucky quarter.

I think I used it to buy french-fries.

Thank god I set a good example.

Because someone needs to help the next generation out.

So I’m here to help.

I’ll start with the music.

Um… Here are a few rules.

First of all it has to actually have a “tune”.

Secondly, if you “say” it it’s not a “song.”

Third, if you’re six miles away from me, I don’t need to hear it.

Although I must admit I think there were a few times my father blasted “Tchaikovsky’s 1812 Overture” or Wagners "Ride of the Valkyries" as we drove around the Safeway parking lot looking for a space up close.

“I love the smell of Safeway in the morning. It smells like…. bakery.”

Oh god…..

I am turning into my father.

So I guess it’s true.

Our children are our future.

So I would like to take this opportunity to apologize to my sons.

I am your future.

Paybacks a bitch.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

"You make me feel like a natural moron...."

I was taking a long hot shower this morning when out of my mouth came the following:

"R. E. S. P. E. C. T. FIND OUT WHAT IT MEANS TO... Lawrence... Lawrence of Arabia... He was an English guy... He came to fight the Turkish... because someone left the cake out ina goddaveeda baby don't you know that you make me FEEEEL... you make me FEEEEL... You make me FEEEEEEL LIKE A NATURAL WOOOMAN..."


Oh God.

I think I found my feminine side.

It's bad enough that I don't know the correct lyrics to a single song, so I make them up as I go along, but I have to sing out loud in the shower about feeling like a natural woman?

I was naked in the shower singing about feeling like a natural woman?

In the shower.



About feeling "like" a natural woman.

Not "feeling" a natural woman.


At least no one was home to hear me.


Is that the vacuum cleaner?

No one was home to hear me except...the MAID!!!


I forgot it was Wednesday.

At least she doesn't speak English.

I dry off, get dressed and go downstairs.

"Meester Tony you have a good voice. I love Aretha Franklin. I need a new toilet brush."

I don't have a shred of dignity left.

I can't even be cool in front of my maid.

My maid, who I had no idea speaks English.

What's the world coming to when you hire an illegal alien that speaks English?

I give up.


NOTE: (For those of you that have never heard the Lawrence of Arabia song go out and buy or rent "Hollywood Knights". Women will hate it, men will think it's one of the top ten funniest movies of all time.)

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

I am an Idiot. I need... "The Rules".

I am an idiot.

It's true.

I have done some stupid things in my life.

Hard to believe?

Read my last post.

Go on... read it.

See what I mean?

You would think that after twenty seven years of marriage I would start to "get it".


I am an idiot.

A very lucky idiot, but an idiot nonetheless.

I think the problem is that...

Never mind.

I'm just and idiot. (The first step is admitting you have a problem.)

So I have started a list.

A list of rules.

Sort of the beginning of a survival guide for married men.

In writing.

So I won't ever forget.

Because we men do much better when we know the rules.

So here are the first three.

Rule Number One - Fall in love and marry a woman you can call your best friend. You can do a lot of stupid things around, and to, your best friend and your best friend will always be there for you and will forgive you... every time.

Do not marry your best friend if your best friend is a guy with a hairy back named Larry.

Not that there's anything wrong with that.

Rule Number Two - Fall in love and marry a woman with lousy aim, particularly with marble coasters.

Rule Number Three - Never, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, ever, post in it's entirety, the contents of an e-mail your wife sends you. Especially if you haven't married Rule Number Two.

I will continue to add new rules as I do more and more stupid things.

Because let's face it.

If I haven't learned by now I'm sure to screw up again.

Gentlemen I will accept nominations for new rules from you as well. I know that each of us in his own special way is a walking encyclopedia of stupidity.

Ladies if your own special idiot inspires a new rule I'd love to hear about it. Mainly because the odds are that if I haven't already done it I am probably going to do it real soon.

Either way I could use a warning.

Because I'm too old to "bob and weave".

Plus I don't want to do anything to hurt my best friend.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

THIS MAY SAVE YOUR LIFE!!!!! I on the other hand am a dead man.

I received the following e-mail from my wife. I just cut and pasted it word for word. I realize that I have taken my life, and probably my sex life, into my own hands (no pun intended) by doing this, but right now I feel the need to share.

Here it is unedited.

I'm pretty sure I have a bad case of PMS today. Absolutely "everything" is bugging me! This morning I thought I was jittery from too much coffee. Earlier this afternoon I blamed it on my lunch (NOTE: I had half a tuna sandwich, no mayo, and a cup of fresh fruit). Now I'm thinking it's just plain ol' PMS! And that damn chocolate ice cream, just sitting there, in the fridge, taunting me, all the way from home!

So... if I were "you", I'd make sure I got home AFTER 6PM and leave for your show before I get home from the gym. I promise to go straight to bed when I get home. With any luck and some strategic timing, you may not have to see me until tomorrow when I'll try to be over this.

If you encounter me before then:

Do NOT ask "why".
Do NOT make stupid-ass jokes.
Do NOT tell me I'm pretty or thin - it's bullshit!
Realize you CANNOT make it better, or make it go away AND NEITHER CAN I!! Do NOT offer me ice cream or fast food - I have no willpower and will only be mad at both of us after I eat them!

Okay, so have a good show tonight, break a leg (in a good way), drive safely, and I love you.


I think that there should be a law that requires all women to post warnings like this before we men become stupid at home.

Trust me we will be stupid.

We can't help it.

Because we don't know what stupid is until after we've done it.

Because that's when you women will tell us about it.

A lot...

So I must applaud my wife for her e-mail.

She has created the PMS early warning system.

(I was going to suggest to her to make the font color the same as the terrorist threat advisory colors from the Dept. of Homeland Security but I didn't want to get kicked in the nuts.)

I now make this available to all women.

Just cut, paste and edit it to fit your own situation and e-mail it to your beloved idiot.

Gentlemen I would suggest you cut this out and give it to your wife, girlfriend, weekend fling or whatever and have her send it to you at the appropriate time because the life you save may be your own.

See honey... I can be sensitive.

By the way I'm nominating my wife for the Nordstrom Peace Prize.

Thursday, October 13, 2005

Provolone....The stuff that dreams are made of....

Last night I had a dream about cheese.

Provolone cheese.

I don't know why I had a provolone cheese dream.

It wasn't like it was an erotic provolone cheese fantasy dream.

At least I don't think it was although for some reason I still woke up with....



Never mind.

Is it wrong to think of something your mother said to when you were a kid at this point?

"Put that down, you'll poke your eye out with that thing."

Granted she was talking about the fireplace poker.

(I always wondered why we had a fireplace in San Diego that we never used but still had that stupid shovel, brush and poker hanging next to it. Maybe it's an Italian thing. An Italian mother never knows when she'll need a shovel, a broom or something to knock the sense into you with.)

Anyway, I was dreaming about provolone cheese and when I woke up, I thought I was in Costco, and then I started screaming because they were out of salami.

Then I realized I was still dreaming.

I was dreaming about dreaming.

Which made me think about whether or not reality was a dream and maybe, I was in fact, a 24 year old single wealthy Italian male in tremendous physical shape with a large penis and that I dated seven playboy centerfolds, one for each day of the week and that I drove a Ferrari and lived in a villa north of Milan....and....and....

Never mind.

That's too much work.

So I must have been dreaming about dreaming about dreaming.

I may have been dreaming about cheese because of what I saw earlier in Vons grocery store.

As I was standing in the checkout line the woman in front of me was wrestling with her three kids, all boys, under six or seven years old.

I don't know who the sadistic bastard was that decided that candy was the ideal thing to separate check out lines with but he or she should be beaten to death with a three foot Tootsie Roll.

Hey asshole how about some carrot sticks at the checkout stand??? Maybe an apple or some celery???

NO! Let's put people into a diabetic coma on the way out to their cars!!!

Let's put every kind of candy crap imaginable within arms reach of screaming children. Candy crap and RAZOR BLADES!!!!!

So as I'm watching, one kid would grab a candy, and as mom was putting it back, another one would grab another candy. It was kind of fun to watch actually until I started getting hungry.

Anyway it reminded me of when I committed my first and only crime.

I was six years old.

My parents dragged us to this Italian restaurant in "Little Italy" where you had to walk through the store/deli in the front to get to the restaurant in the back.

After dinner my dad stopped to talk to the owner.

Italians males don't really say that much when we talk to each other. We kind of shrug our shoulders a lot and gesture with our hands while making grunting noises.

This can go on for what seems like an hour when your six years old.

Here's the thing, at six years old my "eye level" was different than my mom and dad's.

At my eye level was cheese.

Lot's and lots of cheese.

Neatly packaged in little triangles wrapped in foil.


The perfect after dinner snack.

Right there for the taking.


We pile the family into the Cadillac and I hunker down behind the seat and crack open my stash.

Even at age six I know I need to share the cheese with my little brothers because one of them would rat me out if they felt cheated.

Especially my middle brother.

He'd squeal in a heart beat.

Rat bastards.

Now any of you that are Italian know that Italian mothers have super powers. One of their super powers is their sense of smell.

My mom was amazing.

She could tell from thirty feet away whether or not I had washed behind my ears just by raising her nose.

I had just taken a bite when my mom says.



My mother turned around to find me with about a dozen opened triangles of cheese.

I couldn't tell you what my mother was saying at that point because when Italian mothers are pissed off they yell so fast it sounds like one big long Italian word.

I didn't cry.


I knew if my mom left punishment up to my dad I was off the hook. My dad never hit me or spanked me. He would pretend to be pissed, take off "the belt" in front of my mom, and then close the door to my room and whack the bed a few times. I'd fake crying loud enough so she could hear and then we'd sit down and talk about it.

We never discussed why he did that. Not once. It was just assumed from the first time it happened that that's the way it was always going to be. He did that with all four of us.

Worse case I'm going to have to share my cheese with my dad.

My mom on the other hand loved to use the "wooden spoon". Which is why, to this day, I'm afraid of trees.

So I figure I was getting the spoon. I could handle the spoon.

Not this time.

My parents drove back to the Italian restaurant and decided I was going to confess to the owner what I had done.

Then I was going to have to pay for the cheese.

I got hysterical.

What if the owner has me whacked?

I was only six.

I didn't have a job yet.

How was I going to pay for this cheese?

My rat bastard brothers offered no help.

I was on my own.

Six years old.

Already a criminal.

Who's gonna hire me now?

My mother dragged me into the restaurant by my shirt collar still yelling that one long word in Italian to me.

I watched my dad whisper something to the owner who started to laugh and then got this real stern look on his face.

Then the owner walked over to me.

The pressure was too much to bear.

I dropped to my knees sobbing, begging for forgiveness.


"Howa u gonna pay for da provolone?"


"Maybe u shoulda wash da dishes?"


"A tell u wat u gonna do. U gonna clean your room when your momma tells u. Capiche? U gonna help u momma and poppa whenever they say, no questions asked. Capiche? U ain't gonna cause no problems. Capiche? When uze get old enough u gonna come here and buy all da cheese I tell u. Capiche?"

"I CAPICHE....Sob."

I remember my parents holding back the laughter on the way to the car.

If you're wondering how I remember a story from when I was six years old it was easy.

My parents told everyone.

All the time.

Until I got married. I actually think they told that story at my wedding.

Sometimes these really are just for me.

So anyway...

I had a dream about cheese.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Mark this one down as my most embarrassing moment...this week...

This morning I rolled out of bed, threw on my bathrobe, opened the front door to get my newspaper and walked right into.... A SPIDER WEB!!!!!


IT WAS ON ME!!!!!!

There are only two things that scare the hell out of me.

Old people at buffets.... and SPIDERS!!!!!

I'm flailing my arms, kicking my feet trying to do anything to get this thing off of me.

I looked like a white ninja on crack!!!

What would they do on Animal Planet?

STOP, DROP and ROLL!!! (Not a good idea on a cement walkway by the way.)

Isn't that what you are supposed to do?

Hell I don't know but I'm trying anything.

I start beating myself with the newspaper.

With my neighbors watching me...

Across the street from me is a house rented by five college girls that go to the Christian college up the street from us. They like to get up early and go surfing, pray, part the sea, whatever...

I don't think they're used to seeing a 48-year-old man rolling around on the cement beating himself with a newspaper wearing nothing but his bathrobe.

That's just a guess.

In my panic I thought the spider was "in" my bathrobe.

What would you do if you thought you had a spider "in" your bathrobe?

That's right I tore the bathrobe off OKAY???

I'm not ashamed to admit it.

One of the girls across the street dropped to her knees and started praying

The others were laughing.

Hey! It was a cold morning!

I wish I were making this up.

I casually picked up my paper like nothing was wrong and headed back into the house.


It's kind of hard to explain to your wife why you are coming into the house with nothing on but the business section of the newspaper.

"Do I even want to know?"


"Where is your robe?"


"You left your robe outside?"

"Yes I did."

"And there's a good reason for leaving your robe outside?"

"Yes there is."

"And that reason would be?"

"I was attacked by Brown Recluse Spiders."


"I think there were three of them, some sort of gang, they threw me down and tried to bite me. I managed to beat them off with the paper and my robe."

"Idiot. Put some clothes on and go get your robe."

"You go get my robe."

"You want your wife to go get your robe off the sidewalk because you're afraid of a spider?"

"Noooooo. I want you to set my robe on fire or give it to a homeless person because I'm never wearing that robe again."

"What did you do to those Christian girls across the street?"

"I think they're giving funeral rites to one of the spiders. I may have killed him with the sports section."

"Tell me again why I married you."

"Because you saw me without my robe on a "warm" day?"

"Try again."

"Because I complete you?"

Friday, October 07, 2005

Show Me Crane Technique: Episode II

I get kind of a kick watching my oldest son spending his days in a confused stupor dealing with the effects of his wife's pregnancy. Part of me thinks "paybacks a bitch" but the other part of me thinks as a weathered veteran it is my duty to try to save him.

When he talks to me now I've noticed his brain is so fried that he has lost all semblance of punctuation when he speaks.

"Yes grasshopper, how can I help you my son?"

"Dad please help me I don't know what to do Kim wants a meatball sandwich and orange sherbet from 31 Flavors If I get the meatball sandwich first and then get the orange sherbet by the time I get home the bread from the sandwich will be soggy and she hates soggy bread If I get the orange sherbet first and then get the meatball sandwich by the time I get home the orange sherbet will have started to melt and she hates it when her sherbet melts So I told her I would get the meatball sandwich first drop it off and then go get the sherbet but she wants them at the same time and that if I really loved her I would just do it and then she starts to cry"

"Cinderella, Cinderella, night and day it's Cinderella."

"Please dad not now. I'm in trouble. There is no way to make her happy."

"Look eye, always look eye!"

"I'm afraid to look her in the eye. If I look her in the eye she'll ask me to do something and no matter what it is I'll get it wrong."

"Man who catch fly with chopsticks accomplish anything."

"Dad do we have to do the Mr. Miyagi thing again?"

"No my son, we don't have to..."

"Please dad, I'm afraid she's going to kill me in my sleep. Does this last for the whole nine months? How long do I have to deal with these mood swings?"

"How old are you my son?"

"I'm 25 years old."

"As far as I know, that's how long it lasts."

"Oh my god! I can't do this pregnancy thing. I'm going insane dad. I tried to compliment her the other night and even that got me in trouble."

"What did you say?"

"I told her that her boobs looked bigger."

"Nice. You told her that her boobs looked bigger? Those were your exact words?"

"Umm... Not exactly."

"What EXACTLY did you say?"

"Exactly? Well... I... umm... I held up my arms like I'd scored a touchdown and went, "Woohoo! Your boobs are getting bigger."

I hugged him.

"You are my son."

"Then she got crazy. "So you didn't like my boobs before. I always knew you liked big boobs. Why don't you just admit it you like big boobs. Do you like HER boobs? I'll bet you do. Why don't you call her up and go WOOHOO big boobs?"

"Sweetheart I don't even know her, she's some actress on TV, she's not going to let me check out her boobs."

"But you would if you could, admit it. GO ON ADMIT IT!!!"

"So I said I liked her boobs before but I also like them now that they're bigger. I was trapped, no matter what I said I was a dead man."

"Then she made me go buy Cocoa Puffs and "ham". When I got back she yelled at me for forgetting the milk. So I had to go to 7-11 and get milk and then get home before Lost came on."

"So my son everything turned out okay and you learned a valuable lesson."

"NO! Everything did not turn out okay! She started crying because I bought whole milk! She said if I loved her I would know that she never drank whole milk she only drank 1% milk. So I run back up to 7-11 to get the right milk. When I get home she's eating "Pizza Pockets" and "ham". She doesn't want the Cocoa Puffs anymore. She wanted them at "the time" and I missed "the time."

"What do I do dad? What do I do?"

"Tell her you love her."

"What? That's it? That's your great advice? I've already done that like a million times!!!"

"Tell her you love her for no reason. Tell her you love her when she's brushing her hair. Tell her you love her when she's eating her ham. Tell her you love her when there's no milk. Tell her you love her when you're out of Cocoa Puffs. Tell her you love her before she asks you to do anything."

"Oh... and apologize at the same time. Just wake up and say, "I love you, I'm sorry."

"Seriously dad, were you scared of mom when she was pregnant."

"Always scare, Miyagi hate fighting."

"I knew you couldn't do it without Karate Kid quotes."

"Just one more thing son."


"It gets better. It really does. Then someday you may be standing in this same place telling the same thing to your son."

"You good?"

"Yeah I'm good. Thank you sensei."

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

If At First You Don't Conceive...Try Try Again...

I think that's what the nuns used to tell me.

I could be wrong.

One of the joys of having grown kids is watching them go through all the same crap you had to deal with at that age.

Listening to my oldest son talk about how he and his wife wanted to find out if she was pregnant confirmed, without a shadow of a doubt, that he was my son.

He took the pregnancy test with her.

That's right.

He piddled on a stick.

He's definitely my son because midstream he asks her, "Nothing is going to happen to me if I do this right?"

Oh yes... He's my son.

I would have piddled on a stick but we didn't have piddle sticks back then, but then again, I always new when my wife was pregnant.

It was within five minutes (okay it was longer than that... maybe 20 minutes) of deciding we wanted children.

I never got good "let's get pregnant sex".

When we wanted to be pregnant the pregnancy fairy granted that wish the same damn day.

My wife could pretty much just do the laundry and she'd end up pregnant.

My wife never got the pickle and peanut butter sandwich craving. Nope, she wanted Coca Cola.... from Jack in the Box. It had to be from a particular Jack in the Box. Coke everywhere else "tasted funny".

She also wanted Mexican food. But "real" Mexican food, you know... the kind that comes from restaurants with names that end in "bertos".

And she wanted them both at 3:00am.

And she wanted them... in a hurry.

Well I wasn't going to argue.

I was afraid.

They don't tell you about the super powers women have when they are pregnant.

Like the ability to tear the hair off or your body with the flick of a wrist just to get your attention.

It was just wrong to be a twenty three year old Italian male with bald spots on your chest and legs and holes in your sideburns.

After a while she made a game of it.

"Odd or even?"

I hated that game.

Pregnant women are psychotic.

My wife would cry for no reason.

"Babe is something wrong with your enchilada?"


"Is it the Coke? I swear I went to the Jack in the Box on Rosecrans St."


"Well what is it babe?"


It's bad enough when a woman asks how they look when they're not pregnant but when they are....

"I'm fat. I'm so fat. Do you think I look fat?"

"You're not fat."

"Yes I am I'm fat."

"No, you're pregnant."

"You're just saying that to make me feel better."

"Um...I'm pretty sure you're pregnant."

"So you admit that I'm fat."

"I...uh...I never said that you were fat, OUCH!!!"

"Odd or even?"

Both of my sons were born seven weeks premature. Which means the only thing we learned about Lamaze was how to spell it. We went to one class, the first class, for my first son.

I decided right then and there that Lamaze classes were designed to keep your mind off the fact that you're wife is about to squeeze a bowling ball through the eye of a needle.

We never even got to the "breathe" part. All I remembered was something about "ice chips."

Before we went into the delivery room they had me "scrub". I put on a gown and mask and surgical cap.

I was arguing the whole time, "I'm not a doctor."

"I only had one class."

"This is a huge mistake we need people with training. I never took the final."

"Someone tear sheets and boil water!!!"

My wife had an "epidural" for the pain.

They didn't give her enough.

I'm not sure what they mean about the "miracle" of childbirth. By the time I got into the delivery room my wife was slurring her speech and mumbling something about how it was all my fault.

Then I watched her tear the sideburns off of the anesthesiologist.

"Do you want to hold your wife's hand Tony?"

"Who's going to catch the baby?"

"Just hold her hand to comfort her."

"Um... Can't I just throw her some her some ice chips?"

I don't remember a lot of breathing and pushing.

I remember the doctor saying something about "a piece of automy" or something like that then all of a sudden they were talking about the head.

Then he grabbed a spatula or a crow bar.

The next thing you know my son was out.

Um.... You know how they say all babies are beautiful?

They're wrong, very, very wrong.

My son had a cone head.


Dan Aykroyd was my baby's father!!!!

The doctor and nurses were all saying how beautiful and perfect he was and how he had ten fingers and toes and HE HAD A CONE HEAD!!! DIDN'T SOMEONE SEE HE HAD A CONE HEAD???

I asked the question.

"Um... Is it just me or is head kind know...cone shaped?"

Have you ever had one of those moments were everyone in a room just pauses and looks at you like you are from another planet before they continue with what they are doing?

That was one of those moments.

They never answered my question. All of a sudden I didn't exist. My wife was holding the baby and the doctor was doing something "down there".

At first I got a little jealous. All I was thinking was hey sport, kids out, what the hell are you doing down there? Shouldn't you be dealing with the cone head problem up top here?

Then they gave me my son.

The fruit of my loins.

With his cone head.

He fit in one hand.

All I could think of is how much I loved him and we would deal with the whole cone head problem.

Maybe with hats.

He could be a cowboy.

A champion bull rider.

Maybe all the champion bull riders were kids that had cone heads.

One of the nurses whispered in my ear, "That's normal. His head will be okay."

Then I looked at my wife. It was at this moment that I knew how truly grateful I was. I looked to the heavens and said, "Thank you God. Thank you for giving me a penis."


He only weighed around, I don't know, thirty pounds or something at birth, but jeez that had to hurt like hell.

Holy crap we are not going through this again!!

But then one morning I mumble something about giving him a baby brother and by that afternoon I was buying Coke and Mexican food.

Our second son was a Caesarean.

I was hoping for a Catholic.

They didn't tell me what a Caesarean was.

When they brought me into the delivery room his foot was sticking out of her stomach.

It was like watching "Alien."

But at least he had a normal head.

I don't think my wife has ever forgiven me for not picking her up from the hospital until the Charger game was over. was January, 1983, the Chargers were playing the Steelers in the playoffs.

We could have more children.

But how many times would the Chargers be in the playoffs?

Hindsight being 20/20....

I made the right decision.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

The Aliens Have LANDED!!!!

The aliens have landed.

No, really, they have.

At first I thought they were Ooompa Loompas but now I'm sure they're from another planet.

I saw them myself.

I'm an eyewitness.

They had to be aliens.

There isn't a human on the planet that has a foot and toes that shape.

They were five of them in a pack or herd or flock or whatever they call it. Short, fat, possibly female, with these weird shoes that had a one-inch heel and this long pointy end.

I mean loooong pointy end.

I think they use their feet as a weapon.

They were probably a warrior scout party, possibly some sort of Ninja.

They were speaking a language that sounded vaguely familiar. I think I've heard it at fast food restaurants before but I wasn't close enough to confirm it.

They kind of waddled when they walked. They also snarled a lot. They had this odd expression on their faces. Like they were in pain but they wouldn't admit it.

They had what could only be explained as huge purses but I think they were actually storage packs for specimens they were collecting.

It was frightening but if I ran away no one would believe me. I had to find their source and report back to the authorities.

Using all the skills I learned from watching the Discovery Channel and Animal Planet I followed at a safe distance.


In my head I was talking to myself with an Australian accent.

I don't know how to type with an Australian accent so you'll just have to imagine it in your heads as well.

Whenever they would turn and look my way I would freeze.

"Stay perfectly still", that's what they tell you, "Stay perfectly still."

"Crikey that was close." (Okay I can type a little Australian.)

I didn't want to anger them. They might have been hunting...or looking for a mate.

Either way my life was at risk.

Dodging in and out of doorways and at times pretending I was a tree I managed track them to......Neiman Marcus?

"What the hell are you doing?"


"Why are you jumping around like John Belushi in Animal House?"

"I'm um....tracking....aliens?"

"Aliens? At the Fashion Valley Mall? You can't just go shopping with me you have to make a scene?"

"Look at those women honey they're aliens. Look at their feet. Those shoes. No one has a foot that shape."

"Idiot. Knock it off."

"Can't I just go hang out at Sharper Image and play with the gadgets no one has any real use for until you're done?"

"Five minutes, you can't behave for five minutes?"

"I'm bored out of my mind. Can I at least window shop at Cinnabon?"

"No stay out of the food court. It's embarrassing the way you press you face up to the glass."

"Honey can I ask you a question?"


"Why do women were those shoes?"

"To make us angry enough to kill you quickly."

"I actually understand that. Crikey!!! I CAN communicate with women."

"Go sit in the car."

"Thank you honey... You complete me."