Monday, June 29, 2015

Eli's Swamp

I know this story is going to sound exaggerated but I swear to you it is not. You guys. I'm a mess. My life is a mess. The decisions I make? A mess. The ways in which I attempt to correct the messes I make? A mess.

This weekend I was exhausted. The Boulder Ironman is now somehow only a month away. Hashtag what the hell. Hashtag I don't deserve this I didn't do anything wrong. Hashtag dark magic.

Because it is somehow right around the corner AGAIN, I have been frantically trying to cram an entire year's worth of training into every single day because I am terrified. I shouldn't be as terrified as I am. I've been training extremely hard. But as you may have gathered if you've read Stranger before, Ironman and I have sort of a rocky history and I'm not really convinced that it isn't intentionally trying to kill me.

So, because of the above-mentioned, I got up every day last week before most of you even went to bed three days before (don't think about that too hard or I'll lose all credibility and then I'll have literally nothing). I woke up early for excessively long training runs or swims or bike rides and by the time the weekend hit, I was no longer a normal functioning adult human. And that's probably how the below happened.

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Musical Cars and Meth Labs

At any given time there are eleventy cars in my driveway. This is mostly because at any given time Young Wade owns eleventy cars. I'm not kidding you about this. He has this hobby where he buys cars at auction, drives them for a hot minute, and then sells them.

I have no idea whether this is profitable or whether it is worth the hassle, but he seems to enjoy it. So much so that I get eleventy texts from him every single day with pictures of vehicles and a series of emoticons I have no idea how he accesses because nobody has ever shown me an emoticon manual and BACK IN MY DAY if you wanted to learn how to use something, you had to look at the manual.

Nowadays, everything is just intuitive for the kids. You go buy a phone or an i-thingy or a mac-a-something and there are absolutely no instructions on how to use it. The kids just pick it up and immediately know how to navigate the universe on their touch screen. WHILE DRIVING.

When I was a kid we found out that the library computers had this unbelievable technology where you could tap on the computer screen to navigate the book selections. So we, the children of the '90s, BEGGED our respective Bobs and Cathies to take us. This was only a few years after my entire family gathered around an answering machine one evening, excitedly, to watch Bob nervously record the outgoing message. Then we called Aunt Diana and asked her to call us back to see if it worked and when it did we JUMPED up and down and screamed.

Monday, June 22, 2015


My friend and I were sitting in a bookstore a few hours ago watching a hipster play a violin (quite well, I might add). He interrupted his own music every once in a while to give a very long explanation about how we are all "connected" and something about "use things, love people, and don't mix those up."

This was clearly an event for a crowd I only vacation in occasionally, usually wishing that I could find a way to stay longer. Just like real vacations. And, just like in real vacations, my quick glimpses into hippie-ville are interrupted by these things called REALITY. And RESPONSIBILITY. And sometimes LAZY. 

The hipster went on for while until he was interrupted by the extremely dramatic entrance of a man quoting poetry in his loudest voice and from the back of the room. He sauntered in, yelling words that nobody was listening to because none of us were quite sure whether someone else had called security already or whether nobody had called security because everyone had assumed that someone else had. 

This is why I always call 911 when Glee comes on TV. I never want us to fall in that "someone else is probably taking care of this" trap.

Things I've Heard the Plumber Say from the Other Room So Far this Morning

"Hahahahahahahahaha. Well THAT was unexpected."

"There's one thing I know for sure and that's that you can't beat the price of bread!"

"It wouldn't be a big deal if Mary would just stop feeding everything that walks up to the house."

"I could have been an artist, you know! A real artist!"

"Of course the whole country went to pot when ol' what's-his-name took over. Thanks Obama."

[Lots of drill sounds] "The only difference between me and the dentist is that I don't give you a toothbrush at the end. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!"

"Maybe if washing machines came with a garbage disposal we wouldn't even need kitchen sinks anymore."

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

Rebecca has been out of my life for two weeks now and I'M NOT PLEASED. I haven't heard much from her. But last weekend she called me at some probably illegal hour, because that's the only time she ever calls me, and left a very long and confusing voicemail in which I heard such phrases as "flood!" and "excessive water damage!" and "my hair is very pretty!" and "and don't you dare say this is a girl who cried wolf situation!"

I waited 48 hours to text her, asking if she was ok. She responded that whatever the crisis was, she got it all worked out and not to worry.

You guys. Why did it take me this many years to figure out the trick to avoiding Rebecca's disasters?

But gosh I miss her.

And now, your Pictures and Distractions:
"Bad Influence"

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Mega Drought

Dispatch: 911. What's your emergency?

Eli: Ok. So real quick--I'm not sure that this is an emergency.

Dispatch: Eli. Seriously? Again?

Eli: There is water BILLOWING down the street. BILLOWING.

Dispatch: And what is your concern?

Eli: Well, maybe you haven't heard about the MEGA DROUGHT!?

Dispatch: So you are worried that water is being wasted?

Eli: Yes.

Dispatch: And you called 911 over this?

Monday, June 15, 2015

Jurassic World: Is America Getting Dumber?

You guys.

I saw Jurassic World this weekend. And oh my gosh. YOU GUYS.


Seriously. Are we getting dumber? Is America getting dumber?!

I know the entire Internets are already full of people complaining about things and tearing apart whatever you love. And I know that I don't need to be yet another one of those voices of hate. But I'm going to be right this minute. Because I sat through all 247 hours of Jurassic World this weekend AND THIS IS MY ONLY OUTLET OK?!

I would warn you that this post is going to be a spoiler for the movie. But I don't think it actually is a spoiler. Because a movie has to have a plot in order for one to spoil it. And Jurassic World HAS NO PLOT.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

Last night I returned home from work to find Young Wade curled up in the fetal position on the couch, clammy, and possibly moments from death. He looked like someone with Typhoid fever on the pioneer trail and I wondered for a moment whether we were going to have to leave him behind.

Eli: Have you done anything today?

Wade: Siiiiiiiiick.

Eli: Laaaaaaazy.

I hope the Department of Child and Family Services doesn't take him away from me.

And now, your Pictures and Distractions:
I made a cheesecake from scratch for Young Wade's birthday. And it was the most difficult thing I've ever done in my life.

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Ms. Painter

The year was 1993. It was a warm Spring day. I was in Ms. Painter's 3rd grade class. Torie Thomas and I were both required to sit at the front of the classroom because, as was noted on our report cards, "behavioral issues."

I was easily influenced by Torie's too-cool-for-school reputation. She had a leather jacket. Her voice was slightly raspy, in the "I beat up kids on the playground" kind of way. My homemade MC Hammer Pants (hashtag Cathie) and practice of wandering the playground talking to myself were no match for Torie's rebellious popularity.

But she chose me. For some reason, she chose me as her class ally. Her partner in crime. Her number two. Her sidekick. I was the Grover Dill to her Scut Farkus. And I was in no position to turn down this relationship.

Torie had started a game with me earlier in the school year wherein we would each take a turn making a beeping sound with our voices during reading time. Each beeping sound had to be louder than the last. The first person to get in trouble by the teacher would lose the game. On more than one occasion, we were both sent to the principal's office.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Wake-Up Call

Mr. Ollie Pants stayed at my house this weekend. This was a wonderful thing. Mr. Pants hasn't slept over for many weeks and I have had major withdrawals. Like a heroin addict who suddenly has to quit cold turkey because he ends up in the slammer.


As usual, I scooped Mr. Pants into my loving arms and the two of us fell into one another's souls, forgetting that anyone on Earth existed besides us. We spent the next two hours exactly like this:

Photo shamelessly stolen from Matt.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Pictures from my Phone & Weekly Distractions

It's Wade's birthday. He's turning 9. Or something. I'm not sure anymore. All I know is that he wasn't even alive when Seinfeld debuted. Which makes all the rest of us exactly 1,000 years old.

I kept asking him what he wanted to do for his birthday and he kept not giving me an answer. So I am now thrusting a dinner party on him. A very obsessively-planned dinner party, which has caused me to be extremely tightly wound the last few days, making me a most uncomfortable person to be around at the moment.

I swear to you guys that I am so uptight right now that, in what I think may have been a really embarrassing overreaction, I actually called 911 yesterday. I am reserving that story for my next time on The Porch, though, because the train wreck that was my life yesterday afternoon needs to be explained in person.

Until then, here are your Pictures and Distractions:
Last week's bike ride near home.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Murderers in the Backyard

Ring ring.

Wade: Hello.


Wade: Huh?


Wade: Care to elaborate?

Rebecca: I heard large crashing sounds in the backyard and now I know there are murderers back there trying to kill me and I don't know what to do!

Wade: How can I help you?

Rebecca: Can you please come to my house right now? But please don't tell Eli because of that whole boy who cried wolf thing that he's always complaining about.