Posts Tagged ‘Holidays’

Dear Folks Who Are Wondering What It’s Like To Go To A Theme Park That Just Reopened:

It’s weird. Every bit of it is weird.

As indicated in my last post, we took Eddie to Six Flags for Father’s Day. “We” meaning “Gideon and I” because Dominic didn’t get off work.


Anyway, I had to make a reservation for us to go. That’s new.

Also new:

路 Hand-washing stations outside the entrance

路 Temperature scans on the way in (not sure that helps if people are asymptomatic, but ok)

路 The requirement for everyone to wear a mask at all times

路 Social distancing in the queue

路 Social distancing on the rides themselves

路 Having to scream/laugh through a mask (but that might just be my problem)

路 Hand sanitizer everywhere

So yeah, plenty of changes.

There are some things that haven’t changed:

路 Crappy attitudes of the teenaged staff

路 Skin-boiling heat with no shade in sight

路 Unappetizing food such as a burger with the bun literally dripping butter

路 The potential for ride malfunction

Here are the mechanics working on the ride we just exited — the one we were stuck on for 15 minutes.

So it was different, but not so much so that I would stay away. We have to get our membership money’s worth!

Yours in thrills,

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Dear Eddie,

Happy Father’s Day! Yeah, you aren’t my daddy (gross), but you are my baby daddy.

You helped me make these two:

But let me tell you: They challenge me. Regularly.

You know my favorite Christmas special? Let me help you: It’s “The Year Without a Santa Claus.”

I feel like Mother Nature with Heat Miser and Snow Miser.

I’ll explain.

They are old enough to handle Father’s Day on their own, but ignorant enough that I felt they needed reminders. And it had to be over text so you wouldn’t know.

But, as you know, they fought Friday night. As you also know, Gideon holds a grudge.

So this was the exchange yesterday:

Not only am I bothered by the unfortunate and consistent lack of punctuation and correct capitalization, I’m outraged at the fighting over text.

I know today ultimately will be a good day for you (I’ve got some things in reserve to make sure), but I wanted you to know what happened behind the scenes.

We still made it snow in Southtown.

Mother Nature (aka Yo’ Baby Mama)

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Dear Boys of Mine (all three),

Thank you for making this Mother’s Day the best ever. For real.

You know last year I wasn’t happy at all. It was not because you didn’t do the “right” thing. It was because you didn’t do anything on the day at all.

But this year, you made it right, and then some.

First, breakfast in bed with a side of “Hoarders” on the TV (you know how I feel about that show).

Then a treasure hunt with gifts, including my new food obsession: Flamin’ hot popcorn. (No surprise there, I’m sure.)

The hunt culminated in a homemade movie that made me cry. Twice.

Finally? Lunch based on a tomato soup commercial I saw yesterday. (You know the one: It features grilled cheese.)

So thank you for making me feel loved.

I love you too.

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Dear Cupid,

Your big day is over. Thank you for your service.

I know you worked overtime with my sons. Each has a girlfriend.

Dominic has been with Anica a little while — long enough to get into trouble for skipping class to kiss her in the multipurpose room at school.

(The phone call with the assistant principal was mortifying for both of us.)

Now he wants to take it to the next level.


Not just no. HELL no.

I have to hand it to him: He was brave to ask.

But not THAT brave as he asked his father, not me.

Thankfully, Gideon is still in the kiddie pool. But he’s practicing his strokes.






This is new — very new — for him. In fact, it almost didn’t happen.

Him: There’s a girl at school who likes me.
Me: Yeah? Do you like her?
Him: Yeah.
Me (Spidey senses tingling): So what’s the problem?
Him: I don’t know if I have time for a girlfriend with jujitsu and baseball and homework.
Me: Well, just talk to her about it. Let her know.
Him: Okay.
(Waits a beat.)
Him: I’m glad I can talk to you about relationship stuff.

Anyway, you did your thing. And now I have to do my mom thing — the thing where I notice everything but pretend not to, let alone say anything.

They’re feral cats: I have to let them come to me.

Thanks again. I think.


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Dear Simon, Rob and Nick, aka Jesse’s Divide,

It was exactly a year ago that you played Smith’s Olde Bar in Atlanta as part of the U.S. leg of your Space Wolf tour — a leg I planned with no prior tour-planning experience.

(Good GOD. WHAT were we thinking? A leap of faith all around.)

One year ago, I badgered all my friends to come hear you play.

One year ago, these friends seemed surprised I had good taste.

One year ago, these friends bought you all tequila shots.

Photographic evidence

And one year ago, Rob drank so much tequila, he still had the liquor sweats 24 hours later.

More evidence

Now the four of us are talking about U.S. Tour 2: Electric Boogaloo for October, and I couldn’t be more excited.

This tour will be fortified with more Jesus, more vegan food, more gigs, more fans and likely more tequila.

Crucially, this tour also will feature less driving, less crappy equipment and (I hope) less barfing on the side of the road.

I am forever grateful to Clair for inviting me to go with her to see you that February night in 2018.

Love you guys! You’re simply the best.

Happy Valentine’s Day and Touriversary!
Your No. 1 American Fan

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Dear Dominic and Gideon,

I’ve enjoyed spending time with you this winter break.

Gideon and I have developed a call and response that makes me giggle every single time.

Person 1: Good news!
Person 2: I saw a dog today.

(Side note to readers: If you are confused, watch this.)

At one point, I walked into the room where Gideon was playing “Call of Duty: Modern Warfare” in time to hear him yell:

My bullets are made in Arabia, so they never work!

I started laughing and couldn’t stop.

The next day, Gideon called Ryder for PS4 tech support. These kids either FaceTime or talk to each other on speaker.

Gideon started to leave the room with Ryder still on speaker.

Me: Hey! Don’t leave Ryder on the bed with me!
Ryder: Ew!
Me: (starts laughing)
Gideon: Mama!

Later that day, Dominic and I had an interesting conversation:

Him: Of Gideon and me, which of us is the funniest?
Me: A few months ago, I would have said you. But now, Gideon is giving you a run for your money.

But Dominic and I do have one thing in common: We are not party people.

Yes, we are both extroverts. But parties filled with people we don’t know can be overwhelming.

We were at my five-year-old great niece’s birthday party. It became too much. Dominic and I hid in the living room and laughed together.

The birthday girl’s older sister kept trying to lure Dominic out of hiding.

Very cute, but it was no use.

Anyway, our winter break bonding came to an end today. Back to the mutual grind.

But I am looking forward to spring break!


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Dear Highway Convenience Stores:

You are the great equalizer. You bring all travelers together, and do not discriminate.

Everyone will need to get gas.

Everyone will need to pee.

Everyone will need a snack.

Perhaps this:

I am addicted to Slim Jims, preferably the Tabasco-flavored ones. At Al’s Market in Forsyth, only a few original flavored remained.

Of course I picked up the empty boxes of the other flavors, and asked the cashier.

Me: Any more of these anywhere?
Her: They all got gone yesterday when everyone was traveling.

Ah yes. Everyone traveling over the holidays, including me. I drove back and forth to Savannah twice.

So I saw plenty in your environs.

Some things to brand me as the redneck I can be:

Some things to confuse me:

Who flushes part of the way and why?

Many things, actually.

I really am not that close with someone to make full use of this bathroom.

And some that annoy:

Should I also notify the cashier about missing punctuation?

Thank you for your existence, and for your capacity to amuse me.

Happy New Year!

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Dear Santa,

Though you didn’t come through with anything on my previous list (in fact, my eye is worse), you worked through my family to ensure I had a great Christmas.

Just look:

I coveted this shirt. Eddie has one from his pals at CrossFit Steadfast in Savannah. I donate to Goat Yoga Lisa‘s fundraising campaign every year. Now I have a shirt of my own!

This is the gift that will keep on giving. Not only am I excited about learning how to do this art at the February class, but I can write about it. I’m going with Revell, the guy who cuts my hair. So that should be a hoot.

Behold a perfect gift for any Murderino.

That gift is from the kids. They know I listen to “My Favorite Murder” as I walk to work. Eddie reports the following conversation.

Him: Those are really expensive.
Dominic: They are for someone who deserves it. She deserves it. Plus, I’ve been a jerk.

And suddenly both my eyes had issues.

So thank you, Santa. Like Bono’s girl, you move in mysterious ways.

Love and kisses to you and the missus,

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Dear Beer and Wine:

I know I’ve been MIA. There was no inciting incident; I just thought we needed a break.

It was a real break — a Ross break not a Rachel one.

Just look at this screenshot of my Dry January app.

Yeah. It’s called Dry January, but it tracks drinking for the whole year. My wino friend Goat Yoga Lisa suggested it. (The icon is a cup of tea, not a duck. British developers, I guess.)

It wasn’t just last month, though. Here’s October:

  • Oct. 5 was an ill-advised night out.
  • Oct. 19 was the Decatur Brew Fest.
  • Oct. 24 was the Big Freedia concert (one beer).
  • Oct. 28 was a glass of wine after a spectacularly difficult day at work.

My life has been kind of great without you.

Coffee and water are good company.

I’m not sure how long I’ll want to stay away from you and your friend liquor, though. Christmas is coming up, and I love a good spiked eggnog.

So maybe I’ll see you soon.


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Dear Organizers of the Atlanta Oddities and Curiosities Expo:

Thank you from the bottom of my freaky little heart. It’s like you planned the event just for me.

Taxidermy? Check.
Jewelry made from animal parts? Check.
Human sideshows? Check.

One of the first things I saw when I walked in (by myself of course because who’s going with me to this?) was this array:

I think my strange little heart skipped a beat.

Then I saw this:

Sadly, he was not for sale.

But creations featuring Ouija boards were.

I am not allowed to come home with occult material. I’m not even allowed to remind Eddie that we have a Ouija board in the house.

But I almost came home with this:

I decided against the leg. I’m ok with having things that might have been roadkill. But a giraffe is an unlikely candidate for that.

Instead, I bought a coyote face.

That’s right.

And I actually uttered this sentence:

How much is the face?

That was my only Buffalo Bill moment, I promise.

I didn’t buy the jars of teeth that looked like corn niblets.

I also passed up the pelts.

I even declined the dicks.

You know what I did buy? Mouse paw metal horns.

And a glow-in-the-dark necklace featuring a spiderweb.

Note: That’s quite a job title. Is there a degree in that? Or maybe a certificate?

I also bought some leggings.

The ones on the right will be my Murderino lure.

Sadly, I did not come home with an IV stand.

Or a sheep skin.

Or any of the many hot bearded and tattooed men in attendance. You couldn’t swing a (dead) cat in there without hitting one of those.

Note to self: If you find yourself single, don’t troll bars. Clearly, you’ll find life among the dead instead.

My potential Hinge pic!

Look, I know that photo isn’t as sexy as the glamour shots of someone’s monkey, but I do what I can.

Anyway, thank you for bringing this event to Atlanta. You’ve given me new ways to torture my family — just in time for the holidays.

All my love,

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