Baggage Accents

I hear somewhere that Sunday is supposed to be a day of rest….

That somewhere is not here.

Sunday is the day where I do all the crap I can’t do when I’m working.

So there’s no rest for the…..


That’s right,  not here….get to steppin’ you gonna have to get a job eventually teenager that thinks there’s a promising future in laying around the house all weekend!

Sorry….where was I?

Oh, yeah…crap I can’t do during the week….

Sunday is my doing the laundry day. I have been doing this grand task every week since before we got married.

Why, you must be asking is the man doing all the laundry?…..

Because it bring me FREAKING PEACE.


That’s how our family tumbles and dries ’round here.

I usually have around 5 loads to do. That is, as long as I remember to look under the bed, sofas, behind doors, on the ceiling fans, etc.

If you do laundry regularly, then you know the drill.

Sunday is also weekly grocery shopping day.

My wife and I experience this together.

Mainly because, if she goes by herself…I end up placing a missing persons report, due to the fact that there are TOO MANY LABLES TO READ throughout the store. She has multiple food allergies and wants everything….she just can’t have everything.

If I go by myself…..

I will get back so fast that I end up going back MULTIPLE times in order to get what we need.

It just works out better of we do it together.


We get to our local chain grocery store and begin the slow one wheel is always clunky ride down the aisles with the cart.

About 45 minutes later we are at the checkout…..ready to deplete our bank account significantly.

Cashier – Paper or plastic?

Me– Plastic….I’m allergic to paper.

My wife – No your not. Plastic, please.

Grocery Bagger Guy– How would you like this sacked.

Cashier– He always asks that.

My wife– I want it sacked perfectly. Meats with meat. Cleaning stuff with cleaning stuff and so on.

Grocery Bagger Guy– Yes maam.

Me– I want it bagged alphabetically….and repeated back to me as it is done….with a European accent.

Grocery Bagger Guy– Ummm what…..sir

Me– You asked me how we wanted it bagged. I want it bagged alphabetically and repeated back with a European accent.

Grocery Bagger Guy– …….I’ve never been to Europe……

Sunday…..if ya can’t rest….at least make it worth it.

Double Vision

I am the speaker of truth in our household.

Oh no….its true…its true.

If you want a flowery, politically correct, I care about your feelings answer then the person to go to is….not me.

I ain’t got time for feelings.

Ain’t nobody got time for that.

I get asked questions all the time.

My answers are direct and to the point.

Not too long ago, my teenage stepdaughter had a question that needed a decisive answer.

Naturally, she came to me…….

“Why can’t boys look me in the eyes when they talk to me?” She inquired.

I looked up from the book I was reading, which was entitled-

“Magic Tricks For Dummies”

I was completely entranced with the how to make a quarter dissappear and make it reappear behind someone’s ear trick when she approached me.

I wasn’t quite sure what she said.

I placed the book aside and said,

” Ummm….wha?”

A bit frustrated that I didn’t hear her the first time, she hastily repeated the question, although in different form.


She accented her verbage by pointing to space at the center of her chest.

“CLEAVLAGE! Why do boys stare at my cleavlage instead of my eyes when they talk?”

My honesty sometimes gets the best of me…..

“Well honey….boys…wait a sec….did you say cleavlage?”

“Yes, of course I did. They always stare right here.” She said as she reaffirmed her previous pointing motion.

“Well honey, that’s not cleavlage. Cleavlage is a city in Ohio.”

Like I said…..

Direct and to the point.

The answers come to me……like magic.


Anatomy Of A Mom


To some…..this is probably an odd family photo.

Not all of the individuals….look… family.

But alas, they are family.

My family.

This is a tribute to my Mom.

After her and my father got married. They yearned to start a family.


doctors told her there was a higher than likely chance that she would not be able to.

That was not a deterrence in their quest.

The love of motherhood did not have to emanate from her womb, it could blossom from adoption.

My older brother, sitting next to her in the photo, would be their first child.

Fast forward a bit more than a year later.

The higher than likely chance of not conceiving a child turned out to be a false prophesy……

I was born.

That’s me in the top left of the photo…..kind of.

Now she was Mom to 2.

A year and a half later……

2 became 3 with the birth of my younger brother. That’s him with the bewildered look in the Grey shirt that matches my Dad’s shirt.

Raising 3 boys all similar in age was challenging I am sure.

We were more than a handful.


my Mother always longed to have a daughter.

She was an only child.

She has lots of knowledge to pass on that her dirty muddy always breaking things boys just wouldn’t understand.

Fast forward 9 long years after the birth of her last child.

Her and my father turned to adoption, once again.

Through friends of friends they learned of a couple that was having a child that they could not keep.

They and there 4 other children were living in rough conditions and could not afford another child.

My parents were contacted and told them they would be there for the birth and if the child was a female they would adopt her.

Enter my youngest brother, standing next to me and above my Father.

When he was born, my Mother held him and looked into his eyes his newly opened eyes and couldn’t…..not…..adopt him.

That’s how 3 became 4.

Discouraged to be daughterless but overjoyed with her new son, life continued on………

For 1 month and 1 day.

With a single phone call, 4 would become 5.

We have family friends that live in Chihuahua, Mexico.

They knew of my Mother’s desire to have a daughter.

I’m not sure if it is still true or not, but, back then having a child out of wedlock was a big no no in Mexico.

The phone call told the story of a prominent doctor who had a daughter who gave birth to a daughter out of wedlock. She would not be allowed to keep her.  They preferred to have the child grow up in America.

Before my parents could hang up the phone, they were loading up the car and driving to receive the gift she always wanted.

A daughter, standing at the far right of the photo.

A photo may be worth a thousand words.

To the 5 kids surrounding the woman in the center of this one, it only says one-



A history lesson on Honest Abe from a 12 year old who cares not for learning history.


Middle school and history class. 2 phrases that don’t get along.

I enjoy history. Not just American history but World History. To know where your going, you have have to know where you’ve been as a nation.

When my middle school aged step daughter comes home with History homework I like to help try to engage her in conversation to see what she is learning.

One particular topic that she was studying this past year was Abraham Lincoln. One of my favorite subjects and most fascinating to me. It was time to engage…..

Me- tell me what you know about Pres. Lincoln.

Her- he had a beard….but no mustache, wore that hat that looked like the one that guitar guy you like wears, he was famous for some address he lived at-

Me- address he lived it? You mean The White house?

Her- no, he gave some speech about some…

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Out Of Shape

Being a stepfather means being willing to help the kids with homework……

There are other important aspects of the commitment, but, in order to be involved in their lives, I  have to do things that I wasn’t willing to do when I was their age.

Like homework.

I may been released from the wonder years known as high school almost 30 years ago, but I think have a few brain cells left that weren’t destroyed by keg stands and the everlasting bong hit.

I haven’t touched the sauce or the wacky weed in over 8 years….but I’m sure the inside of my skull is still caked with resin.

Anyway, back to the topic-

My stepdaughter needed help with with algebra….or geometry… or whatever subject that has shapes, letters and numbers….

And she came to me for help.

Me….the homework king.

“I need help with some math. I left my book at school and I need definitions for these shapes.” She politely asked.

I quickly looked at the odd looking multisided objects on the page, flipped a few pages to see what sort of trouble I was getting into and said,

“Hmm..why don’t you Google the definitions….”

She looked up at me and said,

“The storm has knocked the Internet out.”

“CRAP!!!” I yelled from inside my head.

“Ok, I will give it my best shot.” I replied aloud with no confidence whatsoever.

“The first one is polygon.”


“Hello!! Do you know or not?”

“A polygon is something that leaves multiple times.”

“WHAT? That doesn’t even have anything to do with any of the shapes.”

“Sure it does….the more times it leaves, the worse shape it’s in each time it comes back….” I reply with a even less confident smile.

Without writing down my brilliant answer she hits me with another one.

“That’s ridiculous….what about an octagon?”

I crack the tension out of my neck and answer,

“2 men enter… man leaves….”

“Uggh..let’s try another one….What is a tetrahedron?”

“That’s an easy one…A tetrahedron is a male robot that is a master at Tetris. He’s like the Darth Vader of shapes. He stacks them up and knocks them down….”


She frustratingly interrupted me during my epic rant.

“You know absolutely nothing about any of this… you?”

I stare back at her and reply,

“Look, I took 1/2 a semester of geometric shapes in college. I know what I’m talkin’ about, Willis. If you don’t want want my  help then I will be unigon.”

She looked at me with what had to be the classic teenage “WTF” look that’s all the rage, as I confidently walked away.

I had to get in one last definition before I left the room-


It’s good to be da king.


Family Ties

My wife’s older sister’s daughter’s daughter is staying with us for a while….she is 2 years old.

Not my wife…

Or her older sister…

Or her older sister’s  daughter….

The last daughter of the first equation is 2 years old.

I guess in family relations to me, it makes her my grand….neice….in law?

I have successfully avoided diaper duty for over 48 hours.

Which works out good for me.

Mainly because, no matter what she is fed….it comes back out smelling like pork rinds basted in dijon mustard.

It’s quite disturbing.

Other than that she’s quite cute and entertaining.


Here she is….sporting my shades.

She likes to bring me things….




She has brought me a book called “Learning A Different Language Book” about 987 times.

I keep telling her-

“Usted necesita aprender antes elglish español”

And then I put the book back.

She looks at me for a few seconds and then heads right back over and picks out the same book and gives it to me.

I then say to her-

“Vous devez apprendre avant elglish français”

Same drill….same response.

I’m running out of languages before she runs out of energy.

She also likes to have animated stuff running in the TV…..whether she is watching it or not.

Things I have learned from this exercise in insanity-

“Sunset Shimmer will never wear the princess crown from Equestria because Twilight Sparkle knows that the power of friendship will keep the band together.”

If anyone can decipher what that means,  please fill me in.

The Awesomeness Of Awkwardness

The monetary outlook for this holiday season remains on the bleak side. In order to compensate I have taken on doing family photos in our community.

The problem with that is…..


I should have known better than to carry on my wayward son when this was my first client-


Then came the Reese family where honesty is always the best policy-


I’m not one to complain but it got a little weird when I was asked to create an homage to “puss n boots”-


My next client wanted a natural photo for their session, I decided to incorporate nature….since you know…nothing says Christmas like a coconut bra and big leaves-


My frustration started to boil over from the lunatic fringe when this one family wanted the usual picture with Santa…..I said, “Flip that frown, not flip the bird!”


My last session….for obvious reasons, didn’t go as well as they wanted but it’s not my fault….the little brat heard Santa wasn’t real…..I felt it was my job to show her he was…..At least until 2000 that is-


So….I can scratch family photography from my list of job options….

Maybe I should try wedding planner next…

Disclaimer – not my photos. Blame the people who actually posted them on the Internet not the guy who is making (more) fun of them.

The Pointless Midpoint Pointer

The high school sophomore brings home 18 geometry problems that need to be properly equated and turned in the following day.

The stepfather, who is 27 years removed from anything and everything high school, has just worked 10 hours a day for 5 days in 103 degree heat.

Using “x” for the stepfather

(Since he has been dubbed the homework helper which means he has to EXplain why letters in math are very much vital to further enhancement in life after high school)


Using “y” for the stepdaughter

(Since the only question she will be asking over the next 3 hours is WHY am I solving letters when math is numbers)

Solve how long it will take “y” to reach his boiling point with the questions from “x” and resort to cheating by googling all the answers, which results in “z”.

Use the midpoint system to find X-Y,
Y-Z and use those to solutions to solute X-Z.

Show all work to receive full credit.

For me the only letters that really matter in this process are-



A Tale Of Two Siblings

The days of rock n roll all night and partying all day are officially over.

School is back in session.

I, for one, couldn’t be happier.

No longer will I come home from work to find kids in pajamas….or not up at all.

Cereal will be reserved for the morning…except for me…I do what I want.

They will be in bed by 10pm and up and gone before 8am.

No more teen movies or video game marathons.

The first day was today.

My stepson is a senior.

My stepdaughter a sophomore.

I had to leave by 7:35 in order to make it to work on time.

My stepdaughter got up at 6:45.

My stepson…7:28.

She came out dressed in her new clothes, looking fresh and ready to go.

He came out in the jeans he had worn for the last 3 days, a t shirt and ball cap.

She had her backpack, which had notebooks, binder, pens, pencils and a daily planner, already filled out with upcoming events.

He had his headphones plugged into his phone… pen, paper or anything remotely school related.

As we left and drove toward the school I couldn’t help but wonder how one could be so prepared while the other was so….not.

They grew up in the same house, with the same rules and same emphasis put on their studies.

My thought was interrupted by an outburst from my stepdaughter right as we pulled into the school parking lot.

“I forgot my drill team stuff.”

My reply,

“You mean…the stuff that you have used for two a day practices every day for the last 2 weeks to prepare you for this weeks performance and today’s practice?”



It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way – in short, the period was so far like the present period, that some of its noisiest authorities insisted on its being received, for good or for evil, in the superlative degree of comparison only.

Another school year has begun.

Quote from “A Tale Of Two Cities” by Charles Dickens

The Growing Pains

The suck-o-fi-cation of the realization that being a stepfather, has brought forth the stupification that even though he is not a product of my spermification, the process of his maturization has smacked me upside the head with the identification that we are one…and…the…same.

For the last few days, we have been going at it over curfew, sex, money, telling the truth…you know…all the great things parents love to talk to their kids about.

He wants all the independence but none of the responsibility that just happens to go along with it.

That’s a strangely familiar memory to me….

Our battle of wills, which, bizarredly, resembles me arguing with a younger version of myself, ended with a mutual understanding.

And me putting in my final 2 cents.

“Now that we understand one another, I just have one more thing to say….don’t EVER forget that even though I am a pain in the ass….. I love you…and nothing will ever change that.”

No matter how you go about it….parenting is worth all the growing pains that come along with it.