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Entries in wine (12)


The Journey To A Warm Sunny Morning

Last night was just hard parenting night.

The boy was studying for his science test, which to us seemed like he was studying for his MCATs.

The daughter? She was spouting sentences beginning with “Can I have…”faster than Lindsay Lohan’s right hand in a jewelry store.

The wife? She was looking at me with a tear in one eye.


I tried to find my happy place.

And once I’m there, I just know that one day…

I’ll slide into my favorite chair on the back porch, in the sun, placed in just the right spot where I perch my feet perfectly enough to rest my head back just enough to feel the warmth of the morning sun.

The smell of coffee and the amazing sounds of South San Gabriel engulf me.

It’s the year 2022, my youngest left for college a week earlier.

The dining room is filled with family picture books, empty bottles of wine, wet floor-boards from last night’s tears, and the wife is still sleeping upstairs comfortably.

When I open my eyes I see the boy walking towards me with his bike, sporting his grey helmet saying, “come on dad!! Let’s go for a ride!”

His innocence and love to share life with good people immediately warms me.

And when I close them I see my daughter in her pretty fancy red dress running up to me, turning around and saying “zip me up daddy!”

Her raw emotion, passion and love makes me want to just hold her.

I’ll reach down, grab my cell and send them both just simple text knowing damn well they’ll see it hours later when they finally creep out of their college, stank-filled beds. They’ll probably shrug it off, maybe take a second to respond, possibly post it on a future “I wish my parents didn’t have a damn cell phone” blog site.

But the hope is that when they see my text: “I love you. Rock life and make yourself proud. We already are.” – they remember…

The tall goofy bastard who tickled them early in the morning until they peed themselves.

The stories I made-up late at night based on any three things they wanted.

The fact their mother and I were there…for everything…proudly.

And I’ll miss them.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ll be glad they’ve moved on and badly wishing they took the damn dog with them.

But I’ll miss them.

Everything leading up to that warm sunny morning…is the shaping of lives and the creation of memories.



It's A Brand New Year!

Well…I’m back after a two-week hiatus.

The fam and I took a little trip to North Carolina to recharge, enjoy some family and friends during the holidays, and to ditch the kids for multi-night excursions of gallivanting, drinking, thumb-wrestling, and graffiti by moon-light.

I thought about boring you with a play-by-play of our 12.5-hour trip from Chicago to North Carolina with a young nipper in the back who decided to grace us with the puke bug three hours into the trip.

But, I’m just not talented enough to pull off a puke story that doesn’t involve Bobcat Goldthwait, a tiger, a cage-match with two moles, and the Sanford and Son intro song as background music.

So, instead… I’m going to do what we all must do this time every year and toss out a snippet from the much longer version of…

My New Year’s Resolutions

I only ran just over 500 miles last year. The lowest mileage I’ve had since Brett Farve first realized he could pic text the contents of his jockstrap to sideline hotties. This year…I WILL break 1,000 miles by December 31.

I’m going to finally stop giving a fuck what other people think!! I mean…if…if it’s cool with you? If not, I could always postpone it another year or so, or something like that. I don’t know. Hey, I just found $5 on the ground. Want it?!!

When I finally shave my beard I will keep a handlebar mustache for longer than two hours!

To finally get my half-sleeve tattoo finished…without going bankrupt.

I will not sleep, eat, or read to my children until I make it to the Presidential debate, earn the right to hold a mic, and ask the question: “Mr. President. You have made it clear in previous campaigns for your current position that you are opposed to the war in Iraq. You worked hard to repeal the “don’t ask don’t tell” military policy, and are working closely with other UN constituents to keep North Korea at bay despite Sarah Palin’s belief they are our ally. So I ask you…will you vehemently support the growing Pants Optional Friday movement?!!”

To go to bed each night having my kids tell me they love me…unsolicited.

This year I will support the grape farmers! I will go above and beyond the call of duty to make sure grape farmers far and wide who just so happen to provide the wine industry its much needed ingredient are given their due during hard times!

To tell my wife one more time than necessary every day that I love her.

That’s the short short version. The longer version is anonymously hand written on a paper that’s been mailed to an unsuspecting gentleman in Arizona I’ve never met.

It’s my annual ritual, it works for me and I’m pretty sure once the guy finishes reading them he’s going to pour a stiff drink and thank his maker he’s not me.

Happy New Year world! Make this one count.



The Age of Not Listening

It’s starting to happen.

The boy is getting the taste of the tragic disease which doctors call the “I’M NOT LISTENING” syndrome. What does it stand for?

The horrific I’M NOT LISTENING syndrome is an acronym for “I May Not Open These Listening Instruments So Try Elling Nomeone Ielse Noure Guff!” (screw you!!! I tried to come up with an explanation for the acronym but damn all those n’s and ending with a g!!! Think you can do better?  Leave it in the comments!!!)

Anyway, the I’M NOT LISTENING syndrome is basically where a kid, usually a teenager, completely, totally and blatantly ignores and defies your commands whilst in a public arena.

As with most kids these days, the syndrome seems to be hitting kids at a younger age. And…well, our boy has been infected.

It first starts out with him ignoring your first request while looking at the other adults for approval remarks that tell him "yes…yes I am being a bad-ass."

All it takes is one misread gesture and it all goes downhill from there.

You want examples don’t you?

Example #1

Standing with a group of neighbors enjoying the afternoon, a few beers and riveting conversation when all of a sudden the boy decides it would be genius to show the world his razor like precision of a soccer ball kick in our direction.

Me: “Grayson! Please don’t kick the ball in our…”

*The ball goes flying and I stop it mere inches from destroying the face of a neighbor.

Me: “Seriously Grayson!!! Really!!?! Come on, you know better.”

*As he launches ball #2 towards the group nailing the wife in the butt.

Me: “Grayson!!! Do you hear the words that are coming out of my mouth, son!!?!”

The Boy: “Can I have the balls back? I want to kick them again?”

Me: “You must be insane!!!”

The Boy: “What? It’s just soccer.”

Me: “I told you twice to not kick them at us and you didn’t listen and kicked them anyway.”

*Two minutes later ball #3 slams into my back causing me to drop my beer. I turn with “that look” and the boy takes off in a sprint that would make Hussein Bolt look like a chump.

Example #2

 Me: “Grayson, go brush your teeth.”

*The boy plays with the dog.

Me: “Grayson…seriously man! Go brush your teeth for bed!”

*The boy glances at dinner guests in the next room sipping their wine, then continues to play with the dog.

Me: “You know I know where you sleep right? You know that there’s no way you could possibly stay awake longer than me EVER! Right!!?!”

*The boy talks over me calling for the dog to do a trick.

Me: “You know you’ve told me the girl you think is cute in your class and I could rat you out with one simple little Facebook posting right?”

The Boy: “Love you dad! Goodnight! I’m off to go brush my teeth!”

And that’s my new weapon against the syndrome. “Humiliation.”

I didn’t just spend eight years of my life wiping his butt, picking his boogers, and cleaning his puke just to raise a delightful well-rounded boy.

No, I did it so I could have a life-time of memories which could be used against him at the right moment to get what I want!! In this case…it’s to get him to do what I say the first time.

So stand back Grayson, daddy’s going to win this public war.

Go ahead, ignore me when I ask if you to brush your teeth or go put your shoes on. I just might have a picture of you reading a book while sitting on the baby shitter in the playroom.

Bring it on buddy!!



The Kids' Stuff

When we first moved into our house we immediately decided to give the kids the basement as “their space.”

We high-fived, renovated, threw shelves and cool shit down there, popped-in a couple space heaters, and dreamed the high-life dream of kids playing gleefully in the basement while we sipped wine, watched adult shows and chased each other around the house with sex toys.

Ok…that last part was only in my high-life dream…but regardless, we dreamt.

Then reality hit.

The girl….loves playing by herself. Dollies, house, school, and her favorite game “my brother’s evil and let’s plot to kill him.”

The boy? Well, he basically hates to be alone. NEVER wants to play alone, and ALWAYS wants to be involved in anything happening within a 50-yard radius.

So throwing him in the basement to play army, Legos, or whatever little dudes do these days is NEVER going to happen. He won’t do it.

Then, to make matters worse, we had a tween come visit us this summer from North Carolina. Basements are a rare thing in the south so when she was confronted with our decked-out underground awesomeness, all she saw was a dark, cold, dungeon of terror.

And she made it known. She refused to go down there unless all the lights were on and an adult was with her.

Ever since then…our kids feel the same way.

As a result, the adult space has become romper-room. Dollies, stuffed animals, plastic frogs and insects, Play-Doh, and little itty-bitty microscopic toys that can only be found by stepping on them with your bare feet at 4 a.m. have now entered into the adult “love palace.”

The daughter wins the biggest prize for being the most obnoxious about it. She brings arm-loads at a time of stuffed animals, dolly houses, and hooker boots to “our” area.

So, I guess the purpose of this post is to say, I miss you adult space.

I miss the gap in time when the Mrs. and I could have spontaneous sex once a year, throwing clothes to and fro without them landing on a fake full-sized cat causing it to meow and purr.

I miss watching watching “Cops” and yelling “get the fucker!!!!” without little ears and eyes being present.

I miss coming home from work and seeing a clean, relaxed space child-free of Barbie houses and army men.

But I know it’s a phase. And…I focus on the positive. Maybe now is the time I put the pool table and bar in the basement and shove all the kids’ shit into their rooms?

I mean…they do have light up there…& a boogie man’s never been sighted there! At least not yet…



The Panicked Cry Of Our Children



At least five, six, eighteen times a day we hear this.

It’s the panicked call from our children freaked out over the fact they currently cannot hear or see us.

So, naturally in their minds, the wife and I have grabbed the car keys, robbed a bank of a few C-notes and headed to the bar to suck-back a few ice-cold-coke-colas whilst leaving our beloved-children to wallow in an empty house.

Meanwhile, in reality, we’re no less than 30 feet away cooking their dinner, washing their clothes, or cleaning up their mess.

Just last night I walked upstairs to pee and noticed the hallway light, both their room lights, and our room light was on.

It was enticing enough to walk outside and give a wave to the Space Station to at least give me comfort enough that the $500 electric bill coming up was spent in becoming an astronaut’s BFF.

We have no idea what created this panic in our children to make them freak the hell out if they don’t hear us creak the wood floors every four minutes. But it’s out of control.

Again, last night I stood in the hallway and proclaimed, “children of my seed listen to my words!!! I shall never leave you alone in the house. The Wife and I shall never depart you un-attended, fending on your own and proclaiming you fit to handle the world.”

Ten minutes later as I was busy explaining to my wife that the “Man vs. Wild” dude was a total fucking wuss, the kids screamed, “Mommy!!!!!?!!!! Daddy???!!!!!!!” while a cricket landed two feet from me and caused me to jump on a table top and throw pillows.

The solution? I have no clue. Maybe do what my mom did back in the early 80s when she accidentally left my brother in a shopping cart at the grocery? Some sort of shock therapy like that?

Now that I think of it, that won’t work. To this date whenever my brother sees or touches a shopping card he pees himself and screams for his mommy.

No, we’ll just continue to hope they outgrow it and in the meantime chalk it up to another insanity I can hold over their heads until they’re parents.

Then, I’ll just laugh and say, “I’ll take some more wine please!”