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.



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.


The Hitching Post

It has been a week since I have last hitched a post to this space.

During the minutes, hours and days that have passed…a lot has happened.

Let’s look back at the week that was-

1- I returned to AA after an absence of over a year. It began with a weekend long anniversary conference at a group up the road from where I live. I hooked back up with my sponsor and am in the process of working a 4th step…..I get gone for a year, maintain my sobriety and start my integration back into the program with figuring out what made me get gone. Lucky me.

2-My stepson crashed his truck into dumpsters that somehow managed to jump out in front of him as he traveled at a safe and elderly speed of about 25 miles an hour…..he made the situation better by leaving the scene at a much higher rate of speed….with people watching him. After informing my wife, she called the police….because….that’s what was supposed to be done…duh. No police report was filed, no charges were brought. The others involved just wanted the fence fixed that was damaged.

3-We fixed the fence.

4-My stepson did not crash his truck. He was not even in the truck. His friend, who doesn’t even possess a license, was driving. My stepson took the fall to prevent his buddy from getting into trouble.

5-The trouble caused by saving trouble for another brought on more trouble. He will have to fix the truck with his own funds. He will have to now get insurance for himself on the truck he will be paying to get fixed. Independence has taken on new meaning for him.

6-I returned to work after an absence of over a month due to injury. It’s August. I live in Texas. It’s hot. I’M MELTING!!

7-My wife and I had a sit down with my stepson and his 19 year old girlfriend about drama, safe sex, lying, gossip, and all kinds of other crap I could done without talking about…..but it was my brilliant idea so I had to do it without being an ass.

8-There is no 8. Seven days in a week, 7 items hitched to the post.

I’m getting horse.

Reply Deny

Being left out of things is not good, but adding being a teenager into that equation, equals disaster.

My stepson feels left out. He text me to inquire why he wasn’t being let in.

It’s a small thing, but it was big to him. I knew he would figure it out.

He is very bright and had a knack for technology,

Unlucky for him that I knew what would happen once he added his number to the list.

The glory of iMessage is that once you activate the number and leave it checked off, every other phone on the family plan gets sent all text messages sent from said checked number.

All I had to do is sit and wait for the fun to begin.

First was a message to his sister.


Next a few messages to friends.


I already had the hook baited and was prepared to make his life in the sea REAL uncomfortable because he should have been paying attention in class instead of texting, but I was waiting for the big catch before I started to reel it in…..

And then it happened.

I was so caught off guard that I was in complete disbelief.

He began to text his girlfriend.

The reel spun in anticipation of the catch.

I seriously considered not doing anything. I mean….he deserves his privacy and being a teenager is hard enough without having your stepdad butting into conversations that he wasn’t invited in to….


I almost sounded rational for a second.

Who am I trying to kid? I pay the bill and can butt in whenever the opportunity arises. Here was my reply-

And just for good measure when he thought he could back out I sent this-

For some odd reason I received no reply….no reply at all.

Like most things in life, it takes a few lessons to learn that being left out is sometimes not a bad Ithing after all.

The P’s and Q’s of Stepdad 101


The joys of being a stepparent projecting principles for prom on post pubescent people is problematic.

Wow. I think I just P’ed a little.

My stepson went to prom last night.

Just our luck, it is his weekend to stay at his Dad’s. So we didn’t have the opportunity to stay up and hound him about his night when he got home.

Luckily, I am hip to the technology of today and realize that teens would much rather text than actually have to talk to the adults in their lives…or anyone else for that matter.

Pre prom, we talked to him about being a gentleman, tipping after dinner, and making it a night to remember for both of them…but more for her, since it was “her” prom.

It is now post prom. I needed to check in with my little man to see how things worked out-

(giggy….jiggy….as long as he doesn’t get all wiggy I’m sure he understood)

(I couldn’t help it…..really.)

(I probably need etiquette training)

I’m out of p’s and q’s….

Time for r and r.

One in 48

I am a few short hours away from my wife returning from her weekend long conference.

That gives me time to reflect on my weekend without her but with the step kids.

That is…if I can actually call it “time” with the step kids.

Let me begin with the 17 year old young man that resides at our house.

He got out of school at 3:30 on Friday. Called me to say something is wrong with his truck and may not be able to drive it to work.

Returned here at approximately 3:45. I informed him he should use my truck. I have his Mom’s vehicle while she is whooping it up out of town.

Got into shower to clean up for work at 3:55.

Got out of shower at 4:45 to be able to screech in and clock into work at 5.

Called from work to ask if he could stay at a friends house after he got off work. I said, “yes”. Time 10:30.

Came home Saturday at 4 with a gift for me and a request to stay at his friends house again.

I said, “yes”. Bribing the step dad with gifts is always a good idea.

At 4:15 I text my wife saying I have changed the bulbs in the ceiling fan in our room to black lights and have placed the gift from our son on our ceiling.

Total weekend time spent with my stepson- probably around 9 minutes in 48 hours.

Next, my 15 year old stepdaughter.

She get out from school at 2:50. We get home about 3. She heads to kitchen to eat because she is starving to death.

By 3:30, she is in her room with the door closed.

At approximately 9 pm, she comes out of the teenage girl cave and asks, “Are you cooking dinner or is it fend for yourself night?”

I just smile.

Her reply, “uggggh.” She makes herself a meal of crackers, cheese, a bowl of cereal, and a hot chocolate.

My reply, “Uggh”

The next time I see her is Saturday at 9:15 am, as she is leaving to go work at her grandparents store.

She gets home at 7:15 pm exclaiming, “I have money and I have to spend it!”

I reply, “uggggh.”

And grab the keys to head to the “cool kids store”.

She buys a top that I will never let her wear in public and 2 bottles of nail polish that would make Cyndy Lauper jealous.

I find a pair of Chuck Taylor knockoffs for $5.

I am convinced that the cash register attendant was quite aware that my “cool kid” days were left far behind me. She rings me up with a smile and asks with a twinge of sarcasm of I want to be added to their mailing list.

My reply, “uggggh. No.”

I send my wife a text with picture of said shoes.

She still thinks I am a cool kid.

8:15 we return to home. She changes into a sun dress for a party she is attending. I drop her off at 8:45.

At 9:20 she calls and says she is ready to come home. The party was mainly attended by older girls who find no time to hang out with one of the freshman girls.

By 9:45 we at the Sonic drive thru so I can purchase her “it’s gonna be alright dinner”.

At 10:30 is when the drunk neighbor came over to ask for a ride to the bar.

When I got back she was asleep.

Total time with my stepdaughter this weekend-probably around 51 minutes in the last 48 hours.

It is Sunday 2 pm. I have not seen or heard from either of them.

That is a weekend timeline of life without the wife.

Honey, how I wish….how I wish you were here.

Law and Order….S’D’U

“In the parental justice system, fabricating the truth based offenses are considered especially heinous. In the home, one dedicated parent who investigates these vicious fibs is a member of an elite squad, known as the Step Dad Unit. This is his story.”

(I know you read that and hear the tv voice as you did….don’t deny it)


My wife and I work with the honor system in our household.

If the kids honor our rules….we honor their requests for extra curricular crap n things.

More often then not….our honor is disregarded, while their crap n things are allowed.

The deal with that is when they don’t get what they want…they hover around us like leeches in a swamp sucking the lifeblood out of us until we give in.

We like to have our rules abided by…but sometimes it better to have our piece of mind.

Enough sniveling already!

Here is the crime that has been committed.

Actually it’s the solving of a crime that led to the discovery of another crime which when solved will almost certainly get me promoted to General Stepdad or some awe inspiring title such as that.

Lemme break it down for ya…

Crime 1-“The Disappearing Socks”

As a married man….I have few things I can call mine. It all about the share. Luckily I have abnormally large feet. So, the socks I buy….are mine and mind alone!

At least I thought they were until they started disappearing.

There is really only one suspect who could possible be guilty of this senseless crime…..

My stepson.

I usually have 1 pair missing……


But over the course of 3 weeks I have had 4 pair missing.

I waited for him to leave for work this morning and put “Operation Sock Back” into motion.

First I went to the Judge known as my wife and ask for a search warrant for his room.

Her reply,

“You sure you want to go in there without a hazmat suit?”

My reply,

“If I can find the evidence needed to bring in the perp… will he worth it.”

She signed the document and sent me on my way….down the hall to his room.

After 20 minutes and 2 exits to come out for fresh air, I went back to the living room with 2 1/2 pairs of my socks.


Once the Judge left for a meeting later that afternoon, I continued my search in areas not covered by the warrant.


I went all rogue cop n stuff…..yeah.

There was a trash bag of dirty clothes in the garage that had been there for about a month that I had a hunch might contain more evidence.

I had asked the suspect to do his laundry. He, in classic teenage boy fashion, took all his dirty clothes and dumped them in the garage….where they have stayed for approximately 4 weeks. I placed them into a trash bag to prevent the unsavory odors from traveling any further.

The inspection of the trash bag led to……

Crime #2-“License to Drive”

The foul odor emanating from the clothes trapped in plastic was almost too much to bear.

I dumped the contents and quickly began shoving them back in one by one, hoping for traces of white that would most certainly be my socks.

I came up empty handed. No socks….just my hands that smelled like socks.

But wait…

What is this camouflaged rectangle on the floor…..

Is it?….Could it be?……IT IS!

My stepsons wallet….complete with drivers license.

My superior powers of deduction has led me to the fact that for the last month he has been driving his truck….without a license.

Time to go to the judge with the evidence…..


I’m a rogue. I will go straight to the source.

Here is how that little dramatic event unfolded…


I asked him if he had his license…..he said he hadn’t had it for about 2 weeks.

I gave it back.

The socks….he denied it.

Life…it’s never as dramatic as TV



During my tenure of being a stepfather-

I have struggled.

I have failed.

I have been frustrated.

I have been cranky.

I have laughed.

Subsequently, I have cried.

Every once in a while….I get it right.

It is important to document not only the parental miscues I have made…but also the successes.

The following text conversation is from my stepson and I. Before replying to his request (which I did in typical good2begone fashion) it needed to be deciphered because-

1- The Logistical leaders of Generation Y has decided that prepositions are not necessary while texting, which accounts for the leaving out of the word “with” which would normally be placed after the word “out” yet before the word “getaldo”.

2- the craft of spelling proper names using the first letter as a capital letter is also a no no with the “y’s”. That extra pushed button wastes valuable time. Especially when auto correct doesn’t even know what the hell he was trying to spell. getaldo is not only not a name it is not even a word.


I am a stepfather. The art of deciphering is old hat. Take the time to get to know the kids and you learn what they mean when they make no sense.


Here is the texting conversation with my stepson to which I have dubbed-

“I win”

Full decipher of said text-

He asked if he could hang out with Gerardo…..

Not the Rico Suave guy from back in the day…..

(Note- blue letters indicate link to Rico Suave guy….hit the link.)

My stepson was not around back in the day….and he certainly didn’t think I was cool when I did the dance and sing the song from the rico suave guy name Gerardo when he and his friend named getaldo stopped by before commencing to hang out.

But it’s all good….because….

I win.

Geography…by Generation Y

The world has changed since I was in high school. I don’t know how…or when it changed but it has none the less.

My stepdaughter, who is a freshman in high school, has a shirt she wears that says “PARIS” with a bow tie to dot the “I”.


I consistently ask her, when she chooses to wear it-

“Why do you wear a shirt that says ‘parts’ on it?”

Her reply,


Tonight I added another question-

“Do you even know what country Paris is in?”

Her reply….


Duh indeed.

The Plan to Cure The 17 Year Old Itch

To sum up my last post-

My 17 year old stepson has asked 3…yes 3, girls to marry him in the last 6 months.

The most current proposal (3rd verse same as the 1st), was by text message.

We stalk his phone. Don’t judge me.

It said,

“Will you marry me?”

Her reply was


His response,

“Let’s run away and get married.”

I devised a plan.

My plan (much to my wife’s disapproval) was to encourage him to follow through on getting married.

Here is how it went-

He arrived home from school and my wife and I asked him to take a seat on the

“Sofa of Consequence”

After we stared each other down for approximately 2 minutes (pure dramatic effect), I spoke.

The bait-

“Son, we…umm….I would like to have an adult conversation with you. You are allowed to reply as an adult with whatever tone you see fit. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind….as I will be doing the same.”

His reply as he sat up straighter was-


The Hook-

“So why do you want to get out of here so bad. Do we treat you that harshly?”

“I don’t want to leave here….why would you ask that?”

The yank on the line-

“Well…you know we read your text messages after you go to bed. Last night you texted your girlfriend and not only asked her to marry you, which makes the third girl in 6 months to be honored with that special request, but you stated that you both should run away and get married.”

Dramatic pause…..

“I was just joking.” He sheepishly smiled as he blushed during his reply.


“Really? I might have believed that the first proposal was a joke….the second one, to a different girl, I possibly might have believed was a joke, if you gave me World Series tickets as you said it….but time number 3? Nope, not a joke. You want to get married…..and I am not mad. I support you 100% in your decision.”

Wide smile from me,

Dramatic pause as I wait for a response.

“You do?” He said.

“Yup. But there are a few things we have to iron out before hand.”

Fish in the net, ready to be pulled into the boat.

“So first, you need to quit being such a pussy and propose in person like a man. You aren’t a kid anymore. 3rd time is the charm. You are officially an adult.”

The word pussy took him by surprise. I guess it did the same for my wife as her elbow jammed into my side.

I was hitting full stride so I kept laying it on.

“But….you are not 18 and I am quite sure that she is not either. So….before you propose to her, you need to go to her Father and ask him for her hand in marriage…..that is what men do….are you man enough to talk to her Father about that?”

I gave him a second to reply, but quickly cut in before he could answer.

“Once you get that approval. You are going to need a ring. An engagement ring. The wedding ring comes later.”

I pulled out my smartphone which had already been preset to and showed him this-

“You make what…$150 a week? Better start saving now. You are an adult now. Adults pay for things themselves….ohh and once you get married you and your bride have to live somewhere….and it ain’t gonna be here. Lol $150 a week.”

He tried to cut in again but I was on a roll.

“Oh….but wait. To be married in Texas you have to be 18 or have your parents consent. Even if we and your Dad give consent… think her parents will? No worries…I will check the states adjacent to ours to see if they are any help…

Arkansas- 18


New Mexico-18

What about Mexico?…sorry, bubba 18. Even if you could run away to get married you got no place to go and your $150 a week won’t get you far anyway.”

He finally got fed up and got a few words in.

“I was just joking. I don’t want to get married…I’m just a kid.”

I had a comeback for that one also.

“Really. Kids don’t bring their girlfriends home in the middle of the afternoon to fudge them in their parents house. No….you are an adult.”

Silence set in.

I quickly recovered.

“Since you are an adult. We will no longer treat you as a child. Unfortunately, you are an adult who lives in our house and has to abide by our rules….so technically…we can treat you like a child. BUT we will non longer be holding on to your money to save it for any reason. It’s your money. You need to start saving for that joke ring and joke wedding that you plan with every girl that gives you the time a day. Eventually one of them is going to say yes. You need to get financially prepared. That’s all. Unless you have some adult words of wisdom for us…..if not… can go play your games…..son.”

My wife hands him the money.

He gets up quietly, walks down the hall and slams his door.

I look at my wife and smile triumphantly.

She smirks and said,

“You never asked my Dad if you could marry me…”

I replied,

“I never tried to have sex with you in their house either.”