So my dad and I flew into Memphis, picked up my cousin Cara in Tupelo, MS, and headed on down Highway 61, aka the Blues Highway. We made plans to stay at the Ground Zero Blues Club — an old, rundown juke joint co-owned by Morgan Freeman, and little less than a mile from the exact spot where famed blues musician Robert Johnson supposedly sold his soul to the devil in exchange for a gift of guitar. Prior to flying out of Kansas City, a small convo between TOM and I:
Dad: Tina, if I don’t come home one night, do you want me to call you?
Me: I mean, I guess. Just so I don’t worry.
Dad: OK, because that very well may happen. I brought two Viagra.
Dad: I’m serious. I’m 62 years old.
Me: OK. I don’t care. I just don’t want to hear about it.
Dad: You don’t want to hear about your ol’ man and his Viagra prescription?
TOM felt so proud of his little blue pills that he felt the need to declare it in capital letters on the plastic tablecloth of the Blues Club (above).
Reason #147 why I don’t want to give up my (718) Brooklyn phone number: Getting a call from a very angry New Yorker who yelled for five minutes something to the effect of, “YOU THINK YOU CAN SHOVE YOUR TONGUE UP MY ASS AND THAT’S OKAY?! YOUR TONGUE IS SHOVED UP MY ASS SO FAR! YOU OWE ME AN APOLOGY! YOUR TONGUE IS UP MY ASS, AND I WON’T ACCEPT IT! YOU APOLOGIZE RIGHT NOW!” I mentally went through the things I did this weekend, trying to figure out if I offended anyone on the East Coast or licked any asses. She wouldn’t let me get a word in edgewise or stop yelling for long enough to even notice that I was trying to speak (“I think maybe you have the wrong number,” “Who is this?” “But… what did I do?” “Don’t speak to me that way, Lady!”) She eventually hung up. So I called her back — no stranger goes off on me and gets away with it. (I get this confrontational quality from TOM.) She quickly apologized and confessed that she thought she was calling her daughter.
Nice to know my dad and I aren’t the only ones who have messy conversations. Photo via Tribe.
I flew in from a New York business trip last night, and being Mother’s Day and all, my dad and I decided to grab a bite on the way back from the airport.
TOM wanted breakfast for dinner, so we went to the Corner Cafe. It’s the kind of cafe that doesn’t have an accented é, and the male and female restrooms are named after various fowl. This posed a problem for me, because the bathrooms were marked “Roosters” and “Hens.” I didn’t know which bird I was, so I went in the “Roosters” door. I instantly realized my mistake. Upon my return to our table, TOM quickly informed me that I am indeed a “Hen.” Oops.
When it comes to my father, I will believe anything he says. Anything. Remember those boxes of mini chocolate chip cookies from McDonald’s? I loved them with all my heart and soul. When I was 5, TOM told me a kid up the street ate so many of those cookies that he turned into one. A cookie. I imagined a walking cookie with eyes and arms. This terrified me. For the next six months, I would not touch a cookie of any kind. Especially the McDonald’s ones.
Today at lunch, my dad and I somehow got on the subject of hunting. He said he could never shoot a deer. He then said he wrestled a bear once.
Me: You’re lying.
Dad: I am not.
Me: I just saw you smile!
Dad: Yea… because it was one of the proudest moments of my life!
Dad: Yes! An 8-foot-tall grizzly bear. I won. It was a big ol’ bloodfest.
Me: OK, now you’re lying.
Dad: I also had sex with a bear once.
Dad: Yea, that mama bear sure did hate it.
Me: DAD! Can you please not go there, just once? I’m trying to eat.
Dad: OK. I’m sorry.
Sigh. Thirty minutes later… Continue reading
Let me preface the next blog post I am about to write by saying what just happened 30 seconds ago. I called my dad via FaceTime, because this is how he often likes to chat (his new iPad and all), to ask him permission to write about what I am about to write about. In case you don’t know, FaceTime is basically Apple’s version of Skype — you are talking face-to-face on camera. The moment he answered and I saw his face… I knew it. I know my old house well enough to recognize the cabinet above the toilet and the wooden beams on the ceiling. I have clearly interrupted his game of Angry Birds — his bathroom ritual. I instantly cringed.
Dad: Hi, can I call you back? I’m in the bathroom!
Me: I can see that! Grooooss.
Dad: Well, I’m naked as hell! You can’t see anything, can you?
Me: No! Just your face. Gross.
Dad: Well, if my phone rings, I’m going to answer it! Can I call you back?
Me: Well… I just have one question.
Dad: Well, hurry. I’m on the shitter.
Me: Do you care if I write about what you said yesterday?
Dad: I don’t give a rat’s ass what you write about. If it doesn’t embarrass you, it doesn’t embarrass me. Well… don’t put anything on there that would make me look bad. Like, don’t say you caught me screwin’ a dog or anything. Not that something like that would happen. I don’t do dogs. But if you’re over here and you catch me sleepwalking, and I’m humping the fireplace, don’t write about that. Now do you want me to call you back?
Me: No, that won’t be necessary.
I was chatting with my dad the other day, and as it often does, the conversation quickly turned south. As in the Ol’ Dirty South.
Dad: So, did I tell you I really like my new iPad?
Me: Yes. I’m glad you like it.
Dad: Oh! I didn’t tell you. I was looking at YouTube the other day. And I found animal sex!
Me: Why were you looking up animal sex?!
Dad: I wasn’t looking it up! You know how when you watch a video, it suggests more similar videos for you to watch? Well, I kept clicking and watching a bunch of stuff until eventually I found these dirty videos!
Me: Gross. Continue reading
My dad came over tonight for Chipotle and a friendly game of Rummy. When we play Rummy, we play for a dime a point. When one of us hits 500 points, the game ends. Tonight I won $12.50.
Towards the end of the night, I asked my dad if he wanted to help me fold clothes. I hate laundry. Hate it. I thought I would enjoy it now that I don’t have to lug it five blocks to the laundromat, but nope. Being the helpful guy that he is, of course he assisted me with this horrid chore. Immediately, I realized this was a mistake. I quickly gathered all of my undergarments and stuffed them in their respective drawers. My dad felt the need to inspect every item very closely. The white bleach spots on my 2003 Sigma Chi Assault Ball T-shirt. The perma-stains on the bottom of my workout socks. My lone pair of black panty hose that I failed to grab. Ooooh, fuuuuudge. As he turned the feet inside out, he tangled them around his neck and began to strike various poses like he was about to go into battle with the Karate Kid. “Please give me my tights back,” I begged. “Please.” And then he saw that little bit of extra fabric that all pairs of tights and panty hose have in the, um, groin area.
Dad: What the f*ck is this little area?
Me: I don’t know! All tights have it. Just give them back to me.
Dad: Why do girls’ panties have that bit of extra fabric there? Guys don’t have that in their tighty whities!
Me: I don’t know why!
Dad: What, is it to help the stench? To stop leakage? Did the panty-hose makers just have extra rags lying around and they thought they’d slap them in the crotch?
Me: Dad. Give me back my tights.
Before leaving my apartment, my dad used the restroom. Upon his return, of course he just had to comment on my lady products.
Dad: That’s some top-shelf deodorant you have in there!
Dad: That Chanel Number 5? It smells real good on my pits!
Me: DAD! You can go home now.